great review (and timely). Mike, any idea why Corsair didn't apply for 80Plus certification?
We have applied, it is pending. It will certainly be certified as it meets all the requirements as far as our internal tests can show so far. Our intent is to produce a wide-range of products that are best-in-the-field for quality, and part of our requirements is high efficiency.
For those wondering why it's not modular, simply price point. With the HX520W being <$100 at some online stores and modular, and the added cost of modular would mean that the price difference between the VX450W and the HX520W would be nearly nothing.
We wanted to launch a basic, single-GPU, non-modular PSU that was highly efficient and very quiet, and that's what the VX450W is. The VX550W is similar but for those who want a slightly higher-wattage product for low-end SLI compatibility, but still don't want to pay the difference for modular.
Ideally, the price delta between a modular and non-modular product would be $10-15 or so, retail, provided the internals are identical. That being said, we also upgrade the internal components to 105C rated caps in order to extend the MTBF and guarantee better operation at its rated 50C temps.
But fear not, we have not forsaken modular products.
We have higher-wattage products in the pipeline that are both modular and fixed cable. While you might wonder why, we've found that the market is large enough that not everyone wants the modular cables and yet everyone wants a power supply they can trust.
Our goal is to be the #1 manufacturer of quality power supplies, with an entire lineup for all sorts of consumers.
Right now, we're only about a year into our PSU business and the HX was a home run for us (and many of our customers as well), so my goal, as the power supply applications specialist, is to make sure that the PSU products are absolutely bulletproof for generations to come.
And this forum, as well as JonnyGuru's forum and some other forums, as well as the fantastic feedback we get from guys like Mike here at SPCR, Kyle & Paul at HardOCP, Jonny Guru, and a few other guys always gives me the best ideas of what you guys want to buy.
I see it like this:
--You guys want a power supply that meets your needs.
--We'd love to sell you a power supply.
--We need to know what your needs and desires are for products.
--We can build those products if there's enough interest.
Sometimes I don't think you guys believe you have that much impact. But trust me, there are basically a small handful of guys here at Corsair that are in charge of which PSUs get made and what the next generation will be like. I'm one of them. So when you guys have comments or suggestions, the next-generation can be directly affected by them.
Like Mike pointed out at the end of his review, he wanted a lower-wattage product with similar efficiency and a lower price point, and we delivered.
So for any PSU comments or questions, or more info on it, I'm the power guy, firstname.lastname@example.org
and I'll answer any questions you guys have.
Wow, that sounded like a sales pitch. Sorry.