A Detailed Look
The Corsair AX1600i Digital power supply enclosure is painted matte black with white labeling. The chassis measures 200mm (7.9”) deep and comes with extra side labels in three different colors: red, white or blue. The labels have magnetic backings to hold them in place.
The AX1600i uses a single 140mm Corsair labeled fan on the top for cooling that incorporates a high-quality fluid dynamic bearing. The fan speed is automatically controlled via PWM by the internal component temperature and load (optionally configured through the Corsair Link software). However the fan doesn’t start spinning until the PSU reaches ~40% load (640W) depending on the ambient temperature. Up until that point the AX1600i is silent.
The fan blades were designed by Corsair to maximize airflow and minimize noise. The fan is rated for up to 1,800 rpm and 0.22A (2.6 watts) at 12 VDC.
The back panel includes an On-Off switch and heavy duty AC receptacle along with an open honeycomb grill that allows the exhaust air to exit the power supply with minimal resistance and turbulence.
The front panel incorporates eighteen modular cable connectors, all nicely labeled. The six 6-pin connectors on the right are for the peripheral cables and there are ten 8-pin connectors on the left for PCI-E and CPU cables. The 24-pin mobo cable uses two connectors. The small connector in the upper left is where the Corsair Link serial cable plugs in.
Note the Self-Test push-button and two LED indicators in the upper left corner. The self-test feature can be activated by pressing the self-test button (power applied to the PSU, main power switch “ON” and no cables attached). The LED on the left should turn green when the PSU completes the self-test (a red LED would signify a fault). The other LED on the right represents USB data communication for Corsair Link. This LED should turn green when communication is first established and then alternate between green and amber to signify normal operation.
The Corsair AX1600i Digital power supply comes with a large assortment of all modular, cables and connectors. The power cables all have black sleeving while the peripheral cables are flat ribbon-style to help facilitate installation with a clean look.
Under the Hood
Here are a few pictures showing the layout and components inside the AX1600i Digital power supply. As with previous AXi digital power supplies, Corsair continues to partner with Flextronics to build the AX1600i. Flextronics isn’t as well known as some of the other big-name OEMs like Seasonic and Superflower, but they definitely know how to build a state-of-the-art power supply. The overall layout looks very good with components neatly organized and excellent soldering on the PCBs.
The following illustration and table identifies some of the AX1500i’s main components with their location and function, courtesy of Corsair.
(Courtesy of Corsair)
In Corsair’s own words: “The circuit in a modern PSU that generates the most heat is the PFC circuit, especially at lower mains voltages. CORSAIR’s new AX1600i 1600W power supply uses a bridgeless totem-pole PFC circuit utilizing GaN power FETs from Transphorm. This is quite an improvement over AX1500i’s already advanced bridgeless, 2-phase interleaved PFC circuit. While the AX1500i’s interleaved PFC circuit is around 93% efficient, the Transphorm GaN totem-pole PFC circuit is 99% efficient AND takes up less space on the PCB. By replacing standard silicon transistors with cutting edge Totem-pole GaN models, we were able to crank up the efficiency, boost heat dissipation, and improve overall reliability of the AX1600i all while shrinking it 20mm in length from the AX1500i’s size, despite being able to output 100W more power.”
Corsair Link Monitoring and Control Software
The digital design of the AX1600i allows for a full suite of telemetry to be communicated from the PSU to the PC over USB. After downloading and installing the free Corsair Link software, you can monitor a large range of performance variables, including power input and output, efficiency, fan speed, and internal temperature. You can also configure and customize some features, including selecting fan speed modes, select between single-rail or multi-rail modes for the +12V outputs, and apply selectable OCP trip points if desired. You can download the latest Corsair Link software from the Corsair website (version 188.8.131.52).
Once installed and running, you will be presented with the Corsair Link dashboard, which features tabs across the top for navigation to different screens. The Home Tab is shown in the screenshot above.