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The M12-II retains the matte black paint job of the original M12 line and looks
very similar. A few details have changed: The 60mm fan is gone, of course, as
are all other vents. The main fan vent on the bottom is the only place for air
to get in, and the back panel is the only exhaust. A couple aesthetic changes
have been made: There is now a blue Seasonic badge over the fan hub on the bottom,
and the specification label has been redesigned in orange and black. These are
small touches, but they leave an impression of attention to detail and quality
a marketing trick to be sure, but one that will be appreciated by the
image-conscious builders who make up the M12-II's target market.
Like the original M12 (and most other modular power supplies), the M12-II is
slightly longer than a standard power supply to make room for the plugs on the
inner panel. It's 160mm long rather than 140mm not a big difference,
but something to consider in the confines of a tight case.
No supplementary air vents a change from previous Seasonics.
Seasonic has used the space freed up by eliminating the rear fan to space out
the sockets for the detachable cables a bit. They are now arranged in a neat
row along the bottom edge of the back panel, where they are easy to access even
when installed in a system. This is an improvement: The original M12 wedged
all the connectors against the far wall of the case.
A splash of blue over the fan hub gives the M12-II a high-end appearance.
The usual open hex venting.
CABLES AND CONNECTORS
There are seven detachable cable sets, plus a floppy adapter and the main ATX
and AUX cables, which are permanently attached. All cables are sleeved in black
plastic mesh, and the IDE connectors have grips that make them easy to remove.
- 20" permanently attached cable for main 20+4-pin ATX connector
- 20" permanently attached cable for 4-pin AUX12V connector
- 20" permanently attached cable for 8-pin AUX12V connector
- 2 x 30" detachable cables with three SATA drive connectors
- 3 x 27" detachable cables with two 4-pin IDE drive connectors
- 2 x 21" detachable cables with two 6-pin PCIe graphics connectors
- 1 x 6" splitter from one 4-pin IDE connector to two floppy connectors
There is no possibility of plugging the cables sets in the wrong way; the PCIe
and the drive cable sets use completely different connectors. IDE and SATA cables
share the same type of connector, but are wired so that they are compatible
with the same ports on the power supply. Any well-designed modular cables should
be this way, but it's surprising the number of power supplies we've seen that
allow serious electrical faults because the connections aren't clear.
The 430W model comes standard with two 6-pin PCIe connectors for SLI or Crossfire
configurations (it's officially Crossfire certified). The new 8-pin connectors
are not supplied. Seasonic does list one 8-pin connector for the 500W model,
but the 500W sample we looked at did not include one.
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