Antec CP-850: Unique PSU with Top Performance

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The casing is a bit different from most PSUs. Instead of the usual dual [-shaped clamshell, the bottom panel opens up with the removal of four screws.

Opening up the bottom panel reveals a bit of a surprise, pointed out by the green arrow. It's an airflow guide.

The curved bump, made of semi-rubbery, plastic sheet material, is meant to force more of the fan's airflow to pass closer to the heatsinks, the black aluminum extrusions visible in the open PSU above. The second PCB can now be seen for what it is: A rectangular part covering perhaps a quarter of the available area.

This view shows both the main PCB with heatsinks oriented to take advantage of the fan's airflow direction, as well as the smaller PCB.

Here's the same angle as the previous photo, but with the small PCB unscrewed and flipped a bit to show its populated components. It was identified by Antec as the transient filter circuit. One thought is whether the extra wiring and soldering between the two PCBs could cause current losses or voltage drops, compared to single PCB designs. Certainly, resistance would be lower with one PCB.

The green arrow above points to a 4-pin connector whose wires go to the PWM fan from a peripheral PCB. This must be the fan controller circuit — at least partly. The main portion of the PCB is difficult to examine without taking the entire unit apart, so let's refer you to the review by OklahomaWolf at for all the gory details. (Hint: The Wolf really geek-drooled over his sample. lol!)

Protechnic / Magic is a fan brand Antec has not used in the past. The geometry of the 7-blade 120x25mm 0.52A fan looks good; the trailing edges of the blades are not parallel to the struts, which usually helps to minimize tonal noise. (See Fan Blade Geometry on page 3 of the
Anatomy of the Silent Fan for more details.) The manufacturer states that it is a dual-ball bearing model rated for 12VDC, 93CFM, 2800 RPM, at 42 dBA.

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