EVGA SuperNOVA 1600 P2 Power Supply Review

EVGA recently introduced its flagship power supply, the SuperNOVA 1600 P2. In addition to monstrous capacity, it also features 80 PLUS Platinum efficiency, promises top performance levels and offers silent operation in semi-passive mode.

EVGA is quite active in the power supply market; in a rather short period, the company managed to earn itself a good reputation. Surely, EVGA's close cooperation with Super Flower played a big role in this, providing the opportunity to release high-performing products at modest prices. EVGA already had an 80 PLUS Gold-rated offering with 1.6kW capacity. But it seems this wasn't enough, so the company released a Platinum-rated version, too. And according to our sources, EVGA won't stop at Platinum; once Super Flower has its high-power Titanium platform ready for production, it will join EVGA's portfolio (the 1600 T2 is already available).

Currently, the only other high-capacity Titanium-rated PSU is Corsair's AX1500i, and it will be interesting to see how Super Flower's implementation scores against that compelling product.

The 1600 P2, which we're reviewing today, promises 1600W of continuous power under high operating temperatures and up to 92 percent efficiency (with 115V input). On top of that, it employs a fully modular cabling design, which makes its installation much easier.

Internally, only Japanese capacitors are used, according to EVGA. Capacitor choice is crucial in a power supply, since it affects not only the unit's reliability, but also its performance over time. Today, Japanese caps are considered the best, with the Taiwanese versions following and Chinese models coming in last.

Most enthusiasts won't need such a powerful PSU, especially now that the glory days of cryptocurrency mining are over. However, this category carries lots of prestige, since only elite companies have products worthy enough to enter it. In addition, the most extreme users with enough cash to buy four high-end graphics cards (and overclock them) may need all of the 1600 P2's output. Under overclocked conditions, the energy consumption of components like GPUs and CPUs goes sky-high, stressing even the strongest of PSUs. This is why world-class overclockers prefer to use dedicated power for their video cards.

Again, the efficiency of the Platinum rating shouldn't be taken lightly, since it's extremely difficult for a PSU with such high capacity to meet the 80 PLUS requirements. As output increases, energy losses become more difficult to control. On top of that, the 115V input and 1600W ceiling put this model on the edge of a 15A breaker's tolerance. Even if we assume that the mains voltage with 15A current will remain stable, the maximum input to the PSU is 1725W (115V * 15A). This means that the PSU should have close to 93 percent efficiency at full load in order to avoid exceeding the breaker's 15A limit. This is close to impossible, of course, even for a Platinum-rated PSU, so we expect the current output to be a little higher under full load, at around 16A. EVGA thankfully thought of this and provides a thick power cord that should have no problem at such high amperage.

The protection features list looks poor for a high-end PSU like this one, but the only crucial deficiency is a lack of over-temperature protection (OTP). We strongly believe that such safeguards are essential for every PSU, especially a high-capacity one that utilizes a semi-passive mode. If anything goes wrong and the fan stops spinning, the only mechanism protecting the PSU (and possibly the rest of the platform) is OTP. Thus, it should be present in every power supply, regardless of price or capacity.

For cooling, a double-ball-bearing fan is used. It is of good quality and strong enough to move heat out of the PSU's internals. In contrast to the 1600 G2, this unit features a semi-passive mode. Once selected, it keeps the fan from spinning under light loads or low internal temperatures.

The 1600 P2 is huge, both in dimensions and weight, though this is to be expected since this unit is a real powerhouse. EVGA's warranty currently is the longest provided for a PSU product, spanning 10 years (you can find EVGA's terms here). At the time of writing, the price difference between the 1600 P2 and the 1600 G2 was $30, the 1600 P2 being more expensive since it features higher efficiency. This is a small amount given the high purchase prices and the fact that the 1600 P2 not only sports Platinum efficiency but also a semi-passive mode.

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