During our visit in DeepCool's suite in CES we noticed a prototype liquid cooled PSU. There were some attempts in the past to build liquid cooled PSUs (e.g. the Koolance PSU-1200ATX-12S), but none of them was successful because the PSUs were very expensive, bulky and didn't offer good performance. This however didn't stop DeepCool from revisiting the whole liquid cooled PSU idea. The OEM behind their prototype is CWT, which also built the aforementioned Koolance PSU.
Some of you will probably wonder why to use liquid cooling into a PSU. The main reason is the lower noise, since with the proper design there is no need for a high-speed fan, which can be a loud noise source especially when the PSU is pushed hard. In addition, liquid cooling can offer lower temperatures which will lead to better performance and increased reliability, because the stress to the PSU's parts will be lower. However there is a catch here and this is depicted on the fact that you will still have to cool down the parts (e.g. electrolytic capacitors) that cannot be heatsink-mounted, so a fan will be needed, especially if the liquid-cooling block doesn't allow for a fanless design. In this case DeepCool used an FDB fan, which handles mostly the cooling of the PSU's passive components (capacitors).
According to DeepCool their liquid cooled PSU will be ready in 4-5 months, since they are still evaluating its performance and operation in general. As you can see from the provided photos the unit has a thick aluminum chassis which plays a significant role into removing the heat from the internals. This PSU features also a fully modular cabling design along with LED lighting. DeepCool's PR informed us that they are planning to release more than one models with most likely 650W and 750W capacities and that the efficiency certification will be 80 PLUS Gold, while they are also thinking to upgrade it to 80 PLUS Platinum. The price for the 650W model will be around $200, which is on the high side but if they manage to make this PSU whisper quiet even under full load operation and reliable at the same time, we believe that it will definitely be worthy this stiff price tag.
A table with the PSU's specifications, the ones that were available at least, is following.
|Efficiency||80 Plus Gold|
|Intel Haswell Ready||Yes (most likely)|
|Cooling||120 mm Fluid Dynamic Bearing Fan|
|Dimensions||150 mm (W) x 86 mm (H) x 140 mm (D)|
|Compliance||ATX12V v2.31, EPS 2.92|
I would rather use an EVGA P2 or T2 unit and get the same if not better cooling, performance, and quality.
1). "They can make it lower efficiency to save cost"
You could get away with making it bronze to save cost there, but then the savings are lost by adding this cooling loop. Remember the extra engineering time and QA needed for running water through a power converter reliably
2). "PSU fans are loud"
I've seen this thrown here and there. Personally I have a Corsair HX750i and the fan is off until 300 watts, or at 40% minimum (through Corsair Link) which is completely silent anyways. In my opinion, the PSU in your build should not be a budget item, and if you picked well, it should be pretty quiet.
Again, I like this idea, but I don't see the point of it. The compromises in what will probably price/performance will probably not be that great.
If you're building a silent mid-power (300-700W) there are already fanless (or semi-fanless) options available. If you're building some Tri-GPU monster that you want to keep quiet, dissipating the 1200 odd watts of heat from those graphics cards is going to take far noisier fans than those required to handle the ~100 watts worth of heat coming from a top tier PSU.
Am I missing a use-case here?
When is a PSU fan louder than the ones attached to radiators, or the pumps?
Maybe sometime, someone will also come up with a water-cooled fan, or a water-cooled radiator. Heck, why not a water-cooled water cooling loop?
I mean, it just seems like you're throwing more power (to drive the cooling) at a PSU in order to fix the problem that it's not efficient enough; seems like completely the wrong tactic to me.