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Corsair HX850 PSU Review

Packaging, Contents, Exterior & Cabling


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Corsair's box is large and heavy, similar to the other HX PSUs we've reviewed so far. Up front, we find the model number, a 10-year warranty badge, and the 80 PLUS Platinum badge. We also get a photo of the PSU with its modular panel exposed.

On the bottom, Corsair provides a graphical list of the available cables and connectors, while the back hosts a couple of graphs showing the efficiency and fan noise curves. On the same side, a diagram shows the HX850's dimensions. Right below it, there's a power specifications table.


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Protection inside the box is adequate, as usual for a Corsair product. Two pieces of packing foam surround the PSU, along with a cloth bag. The user's manual is on top in order to grab your attention right away. Still, we doubt many enthusiasts take the time to read it.

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Don't expect to find a USB stick in the bundle. This is only for reviewers, and it contains a detailed Chroma report. We don't need this, of course, since we already have two fully equipped Chroma stations in our lab. The rest of the bundle includes a case badge, several zip ties, a set of fixing bolts, an AC power cord, the manual, and a warranty leaflet.


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An exhaust grille up front sports the familiar honeycomb design. A power switch is installed next to the AC receptacle.

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Stickers on the sides depict the PSU's model number. Meanwhile, you'll find a power specifications label on the bottom of the chassis.

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Around back, the modular panel hosts 13 sockets. On its left side, a small switch sets the PSU to either multi- or single-rail mode. We favor the latter to avoid unexpected shut-downs during the overload test.

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Corsair uses the same fan grille design in all of its high-end offerings. They stand out from most of the crowd, though those parallel lines resemble be quiet!'s offerings a little.

The HX850's dimensions won't create compatibility problems with most ATX cases. However, given the compact Seasonic Focus models offering similar capacity (along with SilverStone's corresponding offerings), Corsair should probably think about shrinking its PSUs in the future. Then again, smaller dimensions and high power density usually lead to increased noise output, and this is a major problem for many users nowadays.


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As mentioned, the HX units employ Corsair's Type 4 cables, featuring extra ripple filtering caps. While those caps are effective, they make the modular cables less flexible, so plenty of folks dislike them. We have to agree that it'd be nice if all filtering caps were installed on the PSU's main PCB and not in its cables.

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Aris Mpitziopoulos
Aris Mpitziopoulos

Aris Mpitziopoulos is a Contributing Editor at Tom's Hardware US, covering PSUs.

  • ilogic450
  • derekullo
    Would it be possible to do a comparison between the Corsair HX850 and the AX860?

    All digital sounds nice on paper, but how does it translate into power supply performance?

    Does the extra $12 for the AX860 give you a quantifiable difference between them?

    And if the AX860 does turn out to be superior in some way then why does the HX850 even exist in the first place?

    Corsair AX860 $181.99

    Corsair HX850 $169.99

    I remember back in 2002 I blew my power supply while overclocking and playing Tron 2.0 .
    (The power supply didn't take out anything, just had to buy a new one.)

    Ever since then I've always used the highest priced AX line, with the rationale of never going cheap on my power supply again.
    (And being more conservative with my overclocks)
  • mauro2003_9
    The AX860 OEM is Seasonic.
  • Aris_Mp
    The AX860i has 1.42% higher overall performance score than the HX850 and the AX860 is very close to the AX860i. I would say that the performance of the AX860 and the HX850 is really close, however the second is much more silent.
  • Dark Lord of Tech
    Congrats to Corsair on another stellar PSU , and thanks for the review.
  • ElectrO_90
    The first paragraph talks about the HX850i and the new cables in this HX850.
    Where are the comparisons between the 2?
    Why even mention it, if you aren't going to show how much better the HX850 cables are, if at all?