Fractal Design Tesla R2 500W Power Supply Review

This is our first review of a Fractal Design computer power supply. This is not a new model and we just happened to get a really good deal on this one as it was on sale, so we figured we would give it a go. Fractal states it also has a contemporary Scandinavian design; black, check, square, check....alrighty.

Introduction

Fractal Design is a newer, Swedish, entrant into the enthusiast DIY hardware landscape having been founded in its current form in 2007. Early on in their existence, Fractal Design began offering a range of DIY quiet cooling and HTPC based products that today include fans, power supplies, cases, etc. Given the nature of their offerings, Fractal Design has become a choice among quiet cooling and HTPC aficionado's. Today, we are looking at our first power supply from Fractal Design. That power supply is the Tesla R2 500W which is made by ATNG.

ATNG Power Co. LTD (I Horng Power Co. LTD.) is one of the larger providers of power supplies in various markets including the United States and is fairly well known to many users. As a company ATNG has been in business since 1987 and currently has a production capacity of ~900,000 units a month. ATNG branded power supplies can be found under other brands such as Rosewill/ABS, older BFG Tech models, Coolmax, StarTech.com, Fractal Design, Nexus, the ATNG brand itself, and others. Typically ATNG power supplies have not been what most users have considered to be a premier product offering but with the increased competition in the power supply market of late ATNG has released a number of new products that are of great interest to us.

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Funny, It Doesn't Look Like a Car

The Tesla R2 500W is the 1st power supply we have seen from Fractal Design. At 500W, it is also the smallest in capacity of the Tesla R2 units that Fractal Designs has branded. As we have not reviewed a Fractal Design power supply before, we don't have much in the way of expectations for these units today save for perhaps that they will require less assembly than other, perhaps more famous, products from Swedish companies (not Volvo). That said, we also don't see many units down in the smaller output capacity range so we don't have much in the way of competition and a smaller capacity unit should be easier to do a decent job with out of the gate so long as the bean counters were not in charge of the project. So with a clean slate ahead of the Tesla R2 500W, a smallish capacity, and no expectations on our part let's see what Fractal Designs has to say about this unit today:

Fractal Design Tesla R2 Series power supply units provide clean power efficiently and quietly. The Tesla R2 is an excellent choice for demanding high-end gaming computers and powerful workstations.

The visual appearance of Tesla R2 Series PSUs is proof of Fractal Design’s commitment to providing innovative computer components infused with stylish, elegant, contemporary Scandinavian design.

It seems Fractal Designs is taking the minimalist Nordic design elements and not only applying them to their products but also to their marketing. No nonsense can be great if it is accompanied by performance and quality (so this definitely is not Ikea). So, let's move on to see what we have to look forward to when we purchase the Tesla R2 500W power supply in terms of documentation, accessories, cable count, rail layout, output characteristics, and general build quality to see if this minimalist nature also gets us good quality.