DC Load Regulation and AC Ripple
DC Output Load Regulation
To simulate real world and maximum loading conditions, the Corsair AX860i PSU was connected to the load testers and supplied with a constant 115 VAC. In this test we are interested in seeing how well a PSU can maintain the various output voltages while operating under different loads.
The ATX12V V2.2 tolerance for voltages states how much each output (rail) is allowed to fluctuate and has tighter tolerances now for the +12V outputs. I have also included a second table of expanded tolerances (±1% to ±6%) for reference.
The following tables list the DC voltage results at the different loads for the AX860i PSU while operating on 115 VAC, 60 Hz.
The AX860i produced outstanding load regulation on all of the outputs across a broad range of loads. All of the main outputs stayed well within ±2% of the nominal voltage instead of the recommended ±5% and complied with Corsair's claims of = ±1.5% for the three main outputs and = ±3% for the -12V and +5VSB. Well done!
AC Ripple and Noise on the DC Outputs
The amount of AC ripple and noise present on the DC outputs was checked using an oscilloscope. This AC component may be present in the KHz range where most switching power supplies operate or it may be more prevalent at the 60 Hz line frequency. We adjusted the O-scope time base to look for AC ripple at both low and high frequencies. The ATX12V V2.2 specification for DC output noise/ripple is defined in the ATX12V Power Supply Design Guide.
Ideally we would like to see no AC ripple (repetitive) or noise (random) on the DC outputs – the cleaner the better! But in reality there will always be some present. We measured the amplitude of the AC signal (in millivolts, peak-to-peak) to see how well the power supply complied with the ATX standard. The following table lists the ripple/noise results during all of the load tests for the main output voltages of interest.
The Corsair AX860i Digital power supply exhibited excellent AC ripple suppression across the entire load range; we're on a roll.