The XPG Core Reactor II 1200W PSU Review: XPG Goes for the Goldby E. Fylladitakis on December 19, 2023 8:00 AM EST
An increasingly common face in the power supply market, the bulk of XPG's work thus far has been on high-end, high-margin power supplies, such as their 80Plus Platinum-rated Cybercore II. But as the company has become better established in the PSU market on the back of multiple successful products, the company is looking to expand their footprint by venturing into the mid-range segment.
Spearheading that effort is the new XPG Core Reactor II series. Looking to maintain their competitive edge with, what's frankly, a cheaper power supply design, XPG needs to walk a very tight rope, where where the equilibrium between performance, quality, and cost is crucial. In this category, PSUs must support a range of computing setups while maintaining a focus on value for money. The Core Reactor II series represents XPG's dedication to this segment, illustrating their capability to cater to a broad spectrum of users who seek a blend of reliable performance and economic viability.
As an 80Plus Gold certified unit and without too many bells and whistles, the Core Reactor II stands out for its practical design, tailored to deliver consistent performance without the premium cost. In examining the details of the XPG Core Reactor II series, we will evaluate how well these PSUs align with XPG’s commitment to affordable quality and whether they meet the diverse needs of mid-range computing environments.
|XPG Core Reactor II 1200W
Power specifications ( Rated @ 50 °C )
|100 - 240 VAC, 50 - 60 Hz
Packaging and Bundle
The XPG Core Reactor II 1200W PSU is presented in robust and visually striking packaging. The box, crafted from strong cardboard, boasts a vivid red hue and prominently displays an image of the unit on the front. Ensuring protection during transport, the PSU is encased in dense packaging foam.
While the package contents are basic, they cover all necessities, including mounting screws and the essential AC power cable, complemented by a few decorative stickers for added flair.
The Core Reactor II 1200W PSU offers an array of cables, all uniformly colored in black, from connectors to wires. The majority of these cables are neatly sleeved, with the exception of the SATA, Molex, and the 12VHPWR to 8-pin PCIe cables.
|XPG Core Reactor II
|ATX 24 Pin
|EPS 4+4 Pin
|EPS 8 Pin
|PCI-E 8 Pin
The XPG Core Reactor II 1200W PSU
The XPG Core Reactor II 1200W PSU effectively manages a significant power output within its 160mm length, modestly exceeding the conventional ATX size. This deliberate sizing ensures it fits seamlessly into a diverse array of ATX-compliant cases, making it a versatile choice for different PC configurations, from desktop HTPCs to compact systems.
Avoiding a too flashy design, the Core Reactor II 1200W PSU is sprayed with a sleek matte black finish. This would be a very refined look if not for the embossed geometric patterns on the sides and an abstract geometric fan cutout, which add quite a bit of flair to the design. The top of the unit is covered with a comprehensive sticker that outlines its electrical specifications and certifications.
The front side of the XPG Core Reactor II 1200W PSU is home only to the standard on/off switch and AC receptacle. The modular cable connectors are thoughtfully arranged on the rear of the unit, designed for straightforward and error-free connections. These connectors, while not color-coded, are surrounded by a clearly printed, bright white legend on the chassis, aiding in accurate cable installation.
For cooling, the XPG Core Reactor II 1200W PSU employs a Hong Hua HA13525H12SF-Z fan, which is 135 mm in size, perfectly fitting within its slightly larger than standard ATX frame. This fan is of superior quality, featuring a Fluid Dynamic Bearing (FDB) engine. FDB fans are renowned for their good durability and quiet performance, frequently finding application in high-performance PSUs.
The XPG Core Reactor II 1200W PSU uses a Channel-Well Technologies (CWT) platform. CWT is a highly reputable OEM when it comes to mainstream and high-performance PC PSUs.
The filtering stage, commencing at the AC receptacle, extends onto the main PCB. It comprises four Y capacitors, two X capacitors, and two filtering inductors, offering a slightly better than standard configuration, followed by with two standard rectifying bridges attached to their dedicated heatsink. The APFC stage includes two MOSFETs (AOTF095A60L) and one diode on their own heatsink, along with a large filtering inductor and two Nippon Chemi-Con capacitors (470 μF and 820 μF). This design ensures robust power regulation and stability.
On the primary side, the Core Reactor II uses a typical half-bridge LLC topology with two IPA60R125P6 power MOSFETs, attached to a dedicated heatsink. It is a fairly basic topology for mid-range PC PSUs with no surprises.
The secondary stage is notable for its ten 014N06NS MOSFETs on a vertical daughterboard, generating the primary 12V line. Additionally, DC-to-DC converters on another vertical daughterboard produce the 3.3V and 5V lines. The capacitors on this side, primarily a mix of electrolytic and polymer types from Nippon Chemi-Con, with a few from Rubycon, are all sourced from reputable Japanese manufacturers, underscoring the unit’s quality and durability.