Today's Hard|Forum Post
Today's Hard|Forum Post

Enermax Platimax DF 1200W PSU Review

If you are looking for a powerhouse of a PSU that is shoehorned into what is a tiny ATX package for the wattage, the Platimax D.F. (Dust Free) PSU may be worthy of your short list. As the name suggests, this PSU sports excellent power efficiency and is fully modular and that could make your HEDT build a lot easier.

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Conclusions

Today we are looking at the Enermax Platimax DF 1200W which is the newest, and largest capacity unit, in Enermax' Platimax DF line of power supplies. Previously, we have seen the 600W model in this line of products and while it was a good enough unit it did not quite blow us away. Today, however, the Platimax DF 1200W not only doubles up the capacity but it also changes the platform completely. So, we certainly have high hopes that this Platimax DF is like previous solid performers we have seen from Enermax when it comes to their higher end products. How that turns out, though, is certainly not guaranteed. So, before we get ahead of ourselves, let's see what Enermax has for us today!


HardOCP’s testing methodology is intended to very much push power supplies to their advertised wattage rating in temperatures that will represent some of the hottest computer enthusiast cases. So if a unit passes all our testing it is definitely not something to take lightly. In fact we expect more power supplies to fail our testing than make it through unscathed.

Build Quality

The build quality of the Enermax Platimax DF 1200W starts things off today on a very good note. Externally, the Platimax DF 1200W starts off things with a fit and finish that is very much like with the Platimax DF 600W. As such, it is truly excellent with the exception of the individually sleeved cables which make each cable bulkier than necessary and prone to knotting, twisting, splaying, and generally making a mess. When we move to the interior of the unit, things look very good as well. The topology is very modern with a full bridge LLC primary and then synchronous rectification with DC-DC VRM's on the secondary. In general, the integration is very nice today and seems to look the part of a higher end product. Beyond that, our other high points should be the inclusion of an Enermax Twister Bearing fan as well as Nippon Chemi-con standard capacitors throughout (which is excellent). The solid capacitors we see don't quite match up as well as they are from Su'scon primarily (there are a few Apaq's as well though). This is all backed up documentation that is just not what we are used to seeing from Enermax in the past and a 5 year warranty.

Load Testing

Today, the load testing results for the Enermax Platimax DF 1200W were very good by absolute terms but, perhaps, even better than that in relative terms. The voltage regulation saw the 12v rails drop by up to 0.17v during testing while the minor rails dropped by 0.03v. Those minor rail numbers obviously look good but the 12v numbers and overall performance do not come completely into focus until we see that this unit walked away from the competition. In fact, this unit was better than the SilverStone ST1200-PT, GIGABYTE XP1200M, Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P, Enermax Platimax 1200W, and Thermaltake TPG-1200F which says a lot. When we look at this unit’s efficiency, we see that it was 88.49% to 93.91% efficient at 120v and 87.00% to 92.77% efficient at 100v during our tests today. Then, when we ran the 80 Plus tests, we saw efficiency values of 92.40%-91.92%-88.38% for the Platimax DF 1200W which put this unit a bit under its claimed 80 Plus Platinum category. Lastly for this section, the Platimax DF 1200W did pass the Torture Test so that part of testing is back on the plus side of the ledger.

The Transient Load Tests results for the Enermax Platimax DF 1200W are passing but they represent a rather significant change from what we saw in the regular load tests in both absolute and relative terms. When directly loaded, the 12v rail showed a peak change of ~270mV and the 5v rail had a peak change of ~230mV. The unloaded 5v peak change during the 12v load was ~40mV and the unloaded 12v peak change during the 12v load was ~35mV. Obviously, we have some good numbers in there and one bad number. That bad number was a real ball and chain, though, as it kept this unit stuck firmly mixed with the SilverStone ST1200-PT, GIGABYTE XP1200M, Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P, Enermax Platimax 1200W, Seasonic PLATINUM-1200, and Thermaltake TPG-1200F rather than leading the pack like this unit could have. However, the unit did end up passing, barely, so it isn't a total train wreck here but it could have been better.

DC Output Quality

Moving on to the DC Output Quality today, we see that the Platimax DF 1200W is posting passing values but it is not quite as well as it was in the above regular load testing in relative metrics perhaps. During our testing, the peak 12v trace amplitude was ~45mV while the peak 5v trace amplitude was ~20mV and the peak 3.3v trace amplitude was ~30mV. Each of these results fall within the ATX12v specification limits, but the minor rails are bracketing both sides of ~1/2 of the ATX12v specification limit. When we look at that competition, we see that this unit trails the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P and Seasonic PLATINUM-1200 while being mixed with SilverStone ST1200-PT, GIGABYTE XP1200M, Enermax Platimax 1200W, and Thermaltake TPG-1200F. These values make this unit competitive, but it feels like the unit is just not quite as competitive in this aspect as it was up above.

Noise

One should NOT expect a 1200W power supply to be quiet because it is a 1200W power supply. However, tons of people these days think that noise output is the be all and end all of a power supply so even products that should not be quiet, brands try to force to be quiet. Today, it felt like that was the case with the the Enermax Platimax DF 1200W as the unit has a number of features going for it, other than the capacity, that should make it a quiet unit. However, when we actually tested the unit we found a few issues in this regard. From the get go, we had a bit of funky fan controller operation that made the unit audible in Test #1 but that cleared up after a few seconds. After that, the unit would again become audible in Test #3, the Torture Test, and Test #4. By the end of Test #4 the unit was contributing a good bit of noise to our load testing environment. So, this is probably not the best quiet cooling option on the market but, regardless of the make and model, no 1200W unit probably would be.

Paul's Thoughts:

The Enermax Platimax DF 1200W is a good power supply. That said, with the 600W model I said that "I'm not sure what exactly it is supposed to be that invigorates the Platimax line," and that is sort of true again today. The reason being, where this unit comes up a bit short is in its ability to truly pull away from the competition and, to me, that seems like what you would need to reinvigorate the line if you were not introducing something truly transformative feature-wise (you can debate the Dust Free rotation if you want but I don't see it being transformative). It did start the day off like it was going to tear the competition up. However, after we got past our normal load tests each other facet of this unit was just more and more average. Average can be fine, especially when the competition is very good, but average means that you are just a face in the crowd. With a new product line it seems like you would want to be more than just a face in the crowd though and so, in that regard, the Platimax DF 1200W falls a bit flat. Not horribly flat as it is a good unit mind you, but just not something to get terribly excited about. I mean, I certainly would not pass this unit up if someone gave it to me or I found a deal on it, but I also would not go too far out of my way to ship it in from another country or anything like that.

The Bottom Line

The Enermax Platimax DF 1200W is a very good power supply that has definite high points and very few mediocre points. In testing today, we saw test results from the Platimax DF 1200W that showed us excellent voltage regulation in a relative sense, good Transient Load Test results, excellent efficiency (though a bit lower than advertised), and good DC Output Quality. On top of that, the unit is very well built and has a few extra features that many users will appreciate. However, one thing that can always trip a unit up is pricing. Today, we see that the Platimax DF 1200W is coming in at $263 with Free Shipping at Amazon. For a 1200W unit that is not a terrible price per se, but it is on the high end of current 1200W models that are similar and it is more than just about all of the units we compared it to today when they were released initially. The Platimax DF 1200W is a very solid performer in what is an extremely competitive market segment and if you find a deal that has it selling for a little less than what it is selling for today it will also be a great deal. That all said, the Platimax DF 1200W is one of the few high-end PSUs that we would be comfortable with in our own systems actually pushing a full 1200 watts for days on end.

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Enermax Platimax DF (Dust Free) 1200W PSU

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