Pros, Cons, And Final Verdict
The CX650M features killer performance per dollar thanks to its affordable price and good overall performance. It is based on a solid CWT platform that employs a synchronous design on the secondary side, along with a couple of DC-DC converters. We typically don't see any of that in 80 PLUS Bronze power supplies.
Corsair was clearly going after top performance as well though, and the final outcome is definitely worth noticing. Moreover, the platform looks to be reliable, otherwise Corsair wouldn't support it with a five-year warranty. The only compromise in this unit's reliability over time appears to be its sleeve-bearing fan, which has a rather high minimum speed. In our opinion, the fan's lowest speed should be around 500 RPM instead of 840 RPM. Aside from cutting noise output some, that'd also help the fan last longer. It wouldn't be wise to ask for a semi-passive mode in an 80 PLUS Bronze unit, given higher thermal loads, so we think Corsair made the right decision by not implementing one. Finally, the number of provided cables and connectors is sufficient for this unit's capacity. And although it isn't fully modular, the native cables are absolutely necessary anyway.
The CX650M's good performance and high tolerance to increased operating temperatures are attributes you don't often find in this price range. Besides the high-end categories, Corsair also wants to make its presence known in the mainstream and mid-range markets. And with products like the CX650M, this looks like an attainable goal.
Load regulation and ripple suppression on the CX650M are impressive, while its efficiency levels put other Bronze-rated units to shame. Although Corsair uses a powerful fan, its loose profile facilitates quiet-enough operation. Compact dimensions are a bonus, while transient response is satisfactory on all rails except 3.3V. Lastly, in the always-important protections suite, Corsair doesn't cut any corners. The CX650M is fully safe, not only for its own sake but also for the components behind it.
Taking all of that into account, if you don't want to invest a lot of money into your next PSU and you believe that 650W of max power is enough to cover your needs, the CX650M should be on top of your buying list. It offers very good performance and an affordable price, so it is highly recommended for users that aren't after the top efficiency levels, but still need a good and reliable PSU that doesn't cost a ton.
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