How do you take something that was already good and make it better? It takes open ears and an open mind. Seasonic listened to our concerns and put its engineers to work with one goal: improve the already top-performing Prime platform as much as possible.
For starters, the issue of high noise output is finally solved thanks to a more relaxed fan profile. Since the fan uses a fluid dynamic bearing, which is much quieter than fans based on double ball bearings, this should have been a matter of dialing in the right curve without allowing heat to build up internally. Although that sounds easy, it's actually pretty hard to accomplish, especially in a PSU supported by a 12-year warranty. Obviously, Seasonic's engineers had to overcome whatever fears compel them to push the fan profiles in so many of their power supplies as hard as they do. But we still think there's room for improvement, since in some cases the transition to higher fan speeds sounds pretty rough.
The SSR-1000PD Ultra is one of the best PSUs you can buy today. It is clear proof that skilled engineers can extract performance from analog circuits that, years ago, we only thought would be possible using digital platforms. This power supply's +12V rail demonstrates some of the tightest load regulation we have ever measured, while its other rails also perform well. Ripple suppression is excellent, its transient response is top-notch, the hold-up time is plenty long, and you get all of the protection features you could want (even if the 5VSB rail's OCP point allows high ripple under taxing loads).
Seasonic wanted its Prime PSUs to prove that the company is king in performance comparisons, despite tougher competition now than we've ever seen before. With this superb platform, Seasonic is finally ready to outmaneuver Super Flower's potent Leadex II design. We're pretty sure that's going to push Super Flower to spend even more money on R&D, and we'll all benefit as a result.
Although Seasonic's top-selling PSUs come from the Focus series, combining good performance with affordable prices, its Prime Ultra line-up gets all of the prestige. The high noise output we observed from the original Prime PSUs is solved (the Platinum- and Gold-rated models benefit; the Titanium series was already much quieter). And the removal of capacitors from the modular cables, while maintaining super-low ripple, is a major step forward as well, enabling less-bulky modular cables. Speaking of cables, we should mention this unit's 180o SATA connectors and SATA 3.3 support, which could come in useful if you want to take advantage of the Power Disable (PWDIS) feature that some HDDs offer.
Thanks to its excellent performance, quiet operation, and high build quality, the SSR-1000PD Ultra impressed us enough to earn a rare Editor's Choice award. This is a great PSU, and it should be among your top choices if you need 1kW of power and have the money to spend.
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