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Fractal Design ION+ 860P Power Supply Review: Whisper Quiet

Our Verdict

The Fractal Design ION+ 860P has good performance and dead silent operation, along with highly flexible modular cables.

For

  • Full power at 47 degrees Celsius
  • High enough overall performance
  • Silent
  • Fully modular
  • Ultra-flexible cables
  • FDB fan
  • 2x & 6x PCIe connectors
  • 10-year warranty

Against

  • OCP is set high on all rails
  • Very low efficiency with 2% load
  • Not efficient 5VSB rail
  • High inrush with 230V input
  • Increased vampire power consumption
  • Small distance between the peripheral connectors

Specifications and Part Analysis

The Fractal Design ION+ 860P achieves excellent overall performance and quiet operation, even under high ambient temperatures and increased loads. The competition in this category includes strong opponents like the Seasonic SSR-850PX, FSP HPT850M, and Corsair HX850. But Fractal Design's offering hits an attractive price point, and it's quieter than the other PSUs in our comparison, too.

The last time we reviewed a Fractal Design PSU was in 2015, so it was a pleasant surprise to see the company revitalizing its power supply portfolio with new products. The ION+ series includes four models with capacities ranging from 560W to 860W. They're all 80 PLUS Platinum-certified. The highest-end implementation also has ETA-A efficiency and LAMBDA-A+ noise badges from Cybenetics. All ION+ units are fully modular and use a capable High Power platform.

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Cooling is handled by a 140mm fluid dynamic bearing fan. It features a semi-passive operating mode that can (thankfully) be deactivated. Fractal Design employs several tricks to reduce the noise level of its fans, including counter-balanced magnets and notched blade edges.

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The table below shows the MSRP of each ION+ PSU in all major regions.

ProductUSDGBPEUROSEKRMBYEN
Ion+ 560P99.9994.99106,99114979911900
Ion+ 660P109.99104.99117,99126989913400
Ion+ 760P119.99114.99129,99138996914900
Ion+ 860P129.99124.99139,991509104916400

Specifications

Manufacturer (OEM)High Power
Max. DC Output860W
Efficiency80 PLUS Platinum, ETA-A (88-91%)
NoiseLAMBDA-A+ (15-20 dB[A])
Modular✓ (Fully)
Intel C6/C7 Power State Support
Operating Temperature (Continuous Full Load)0 - 50°C
Over Voltage Protection
Under Voltage Protection
Over Power Protection
Over Current (+12V) Protection
Over Temperature Protection
Short Circuit Protection
Surge Protection
Inrush Current Protection
Fan Failure Protection
No Load Operation
Cooling140mm fluid dynamic bearing Fan (Dynamic X2 GP-14)
Semi-Passive Operation✓ (Selectable)
Dimensions (W x H x D)150 x 85 x 150mm
Weight1.67 kg (3.68 lb)
Form FactorATX12V v2.4, EPS 2.92
Warranty10 years

Power Specifications

Rail3.3V5V12V5VSB-12V
Max. PowerAmps222271.630.3
Watts120860153.6
Total Max. Power (W)860

Cables and Connectors

Modular Cables
DescriptionCable CountConnector Count (Total)GaugeIn-Cable Capacitors
ATX connector 20+4 pin (600mm)1118AWGNo
4+4 pin EPS12V (700mm)1116AWGNo
8 pin EPS12V (600mm)1116AWGNo
6+2 pin PCIe (560mm+120mm) 3616-18AWGNo
SATA (650mm+120mm)1218AWGNo
SATA (400mm+120mm+120mm+120mm)2818AWGNo
Four-pin Molex (400mm+120mm+120mm+120mm)1418AWGNo
AC Power Cord (1400mm) - C13 coupler1116AWG-

The cables are sufficiently long, and they include an adequate number of connectors. Fractal Design claims that its UltraFlex cables easily bend and twist to simplify installation in tight spaces. Indeed the cables are very flexible, although some of them use thicker wires to accommodate high amperage. The fact that there are no in-cable caps should also help during the routing and cable management processes. Our only complaint is that the main ATX cable isn't flat like the other ones. 

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Component Analysis

We strongly encourage you to have a look at our PSUs 101 article, which provides valuable information about power supplies and their operation, allowing you to better understand the components we're about to discuss.

General Data
Manufacturer (OEM)High Power
PCB TypeDouble Sided
Primary Side
Transient Filter4x Y caps, 2x X caps, 3x CM chokes, 1x MOV,1x Discharge IC
Inrush ProtectionNTC Thermistor & Relay
Bridge Rectifier(s)2x GBU1506 (600V, 15A @ 100°C)
APFC MOSFETs2x Infineon IPA60R099P7 (650V, 20A @ 100°C, 0.099Ohm)
APFC Boost Diode1x Infineon IDH08G65C5 (650V, 8A @ 145°C)
Hold-up Cap(s)2x Rubycon (400V, 470uF each or 940uF combined, 2,000h @ 105°C, MXH)
Main Switchers2x Infineon IPA60R099P7 (650V, 20A @ 100°C, 0.099Ohm)
APFC ControllerInfineon ICE3PCS01G
Resonant ControllersChampion CM6901X
TopologyPrimary side: Half-Bridge & LLC converter Secondary side: Synchronous Rectification & DC-DC converters
Secondary Side
+12V MOSFETs8x Infineon BSC010N04LS (40V, 100A @ 100°C, 1mOhm)
5V & 3.3VDC-DC Converters:8x Infineon BSC0906NS (30V, 40A @ 100°C, 4.5mOhm) PWM Controllers: ANPEC APW7159C
Filtering CapacitorsElectrolytics: 4x Nippon Chemi-Con (4-10,000h @ 105°C, KY), 5x Rubycon (3-6,000h @ 105°C, YXG), 1x Rubycon (6-10,000h @ 105°C, ZLH) Polymers: 31x FPCAP, 6x NIC
Supervisor ICSITI PS224 (OCP, OVP, UVP, SCP, PG)
Micro ControllerSTC 15W408AS
Fan ModelFractal Design DYNAMIC X2 GP-14 (140mm, 3-12V, 0.40A, Fluid Dynamic Bearing Fan )
Fan Power TransistorSTi 2SD882 (NPN)
5VSB Circuit
Rectifier1x PFC P10V45SP SBR (45V, 10A) & 2x Infineon BSC0906NS (30V, 40A @ 100°C, 4.5mΩ)
Standby PWM ControllerExcelliance MOS Corp EM8569
-12V Circuit
RectifierKEC KIA7912PI (-12V, 1A)
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We encountered this platform most recently in Thermaltake's 850W Toughpower Grand RGB Gold. Fractal Design asked for some modifications from High Power, so now it includes inrush current protection. That's an essential feature for any power supply.

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On the primary side, a half-bridge topology is used, along with an LLC resonant converter. We find typical stuff on the secondary side: a pair of DC-DC converters for the minor rails and synchronous rectification for the +12V rail.

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The filtering caps are of high quality. Ripple filtering is mostly handled by polymer caps, while a smaller number of electrolytic capacitors provide the capacitance necessary to handle transient loads.

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The soldering quality on the main PCB's business side is pretty good.

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The fluid dynamic bearing-based cooling fan bears Fractal Design's logo. It has a very low 3V start-up voltage.

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