Gigabyte has been a trusted name in the motherboard business for a long time, however, like most companies, they had to change and broaden their product ranges. Gigabyte now sell a range of graphics cards, power supplies, keyboards, mice and even pre-build PCs. Today we have the Sumo Platinum 1000W power supply from Gigabyte for review…

Firstly, we would like to thank Gigabyte for providing the power supply for our review, we hope to feature more of their products throughout the PC Build feature. The Sumo Platinum 1000W comes from Gigabyte’s premium power supply range. Their Platinum series, as the name suggests, are rated as 80 Plus Platinum efficiency, which is generally the highest consumer rating (in 2012, a server PSU reached Titanium efficiency, however, there are no consumer PSUs of this rating available). The company also manufactures their Sumo range at other 80 Plus ratings with a cheaper asking price.

For those of you who are unaware of the 80 Plus system, let us explain. The system mainly rates efficiency within power supplies (ie. the amount of power the PSU wastes when in use). The original standard was simply 80 Plus, which certified that the power supply was at least 80% efficient any given load. Following that, as technology and competition for efficiency progressed, the Bronze, Silver and Gold standards were added. Bronze requires the PSU perform at at least 82% efficiency at 20% load, 85% efficiency at 50% load and 82% efficiency at 100% load. The minimum efficiency for Silver stands at 85% (20% load), 88% (50% load) and 85% (100% load) while Gold must run at at least 87% efficiency (20% load), 90% efficiency (50% load) and 87% efficiency (100% load).

The 80 Plus certification team, again had to add to the standard for new technology and competition. They added the PLATINUM certification, which is where the Sumo Platinum gains its name. For a Platinum power supply, efficiency must equal or surpass 90% efficiency at 20% load, 92% efficiency at 50% load and 89% efficiency at 100% load. So, while buying a cheaper, lower rated power supply may lead to savings, in the long term, the power efficiency will bring you to save money on electricity bills. Impressively, the power supply also only uses 1W of power while it is in sleep mode.

Anyway, back to the Sumo Platinum 1000W. The power supply has a nice appearance, with a slightly brushed metal housing the premium inner components and the 135mm red fan which pulls air into the PSU. All the connections run on a single 12V rail, which is great as all your components will have ample power supplied to them. When a power supply has its connections split across multiple rails, users of such a supply need to ensure they aren’t drawing too much power from that rail. This concern is not an issue once all the power is delivered through a single rail.

Gigabyte have made the power supply full modular, which means you only need to the connect the cables you actually need. This is great for those who like a tidy, uncluttered case and don’t want excess wires lying around in your PC. Gigabyte’s products are usually very high quality offerings, and this power supply is no different. It features effective over voltage protection, under voltage protection, short circuit protection, over power protection and over current protection which should prevent damage to all other PC components in the event of one of the above occurring.

Now, on to the connectors and cables offered with this modular power supply. Firstly, the power supply includes the standard 20+4-pin motherboard power connector, which provides power to your motherboard and to all its connections and the standard 8-pin (4P+4P) CPU power connector, which provides additional power to the motherboard for the CPU. This connector can be pulled apart to use just 4 pins for older, or lower end motherboards. In addition to these two connections, this power supply also includes the EPS12V 8-pin connector.

In regards to peripherals, the Sumo Platinum offers a massive 12 SATA connectors, in addition to 4 Molex and 1 4-pin floppy connection. On the video card end of things, six 6+2-pin connections (can be used as a 6 pin or 8 pin connector) are available through the PSU, meaning that three graphics cards can be connected without using Molex or SATA adapters (this is assuming the 3 GPUs have two power connections each). To round up the specifications, the PSU weighs 3.12KG and measures up at 165mm x 150mm 86mm.

EFFICIENCY TESTING
Our main test for this power supply will be its efficiency, which is a very important part of power supplies. Generally speaking, the more efficient a power supply is, the higher quality its internal components and design. The 80 Plus Platinum rating almost ensures the power supply will be of excellent quality. We tested the power supply for energy efficiency from 100W to 1000W, going up in increments of 100W

100W – 86.4% efficient
200W – 90.8% efficient
300W – 91.1% efficient
400W – 92.0% efficient
500W – 93.1% efficient
600W – 92.7% efficient
700W – 92.1% efficient
800W – 91.7% efficient
900W – 91.2% efficient
1000W – 91.0% efficient

As you can see, the Sumo Platinum 1000W always stays above the rated efficiency, bar the 100W test. Even when we tested the power supply at low loads (1W-100W), we never saw the efficiency dip below 71%, and the average efficiency between 1W-100W rested at 78.9%. Using this power supply will result in a very significant saving of energy over a cheaper, lower quality power supply, but you also have the added bonus of the PSU being more reliable, and less likely to fail.

IDLE/SLEEP POWER CONSUMPTION
Our sample of the power supply used only 0.6W (average) while in sleep mode, sometimes reaching as low as 0.2W and never going higher than 0.86W. It definitely fits under the <1W usage while idle advertised by Gigabyte on their product page for the power supply.

FAN QUALITY & TEMPERATURES
The internal fan is 135mm in size and sports a nice red design. Gigabyte worked hard to make this power supply very quiet, and the fan is being advertised by the company as a “silent operation hydraulic dynamic bearing fan” which, according to Gigabyte, “ensures quieter operation”. We have to agree with them. Once the power supply is in the system, you have to place your head beside the power supply to hear the fan spinning. Even at heavy loads, the fan was still inaudible once the case was closed.

We tested the temperature of the power supply at different loads, going from 10% to 100%, increasing in increments of 10%. Here are the results we found from our sample of the power supply:

10% LOAD – 33.4°C
20% LOAD – 33.7°C
30% LOAD – 34.2°C
40% LOAD – 34.9°C
50% LOAD – 36.1°C
60% LOAD – 38.2°C
70% LOAD – 39.7°C
80% LOAD – 42.1°C
90% LOAD – 43.7°C
100% LOAD – 44.8°C

So, taking the average of all those figures, the power supply performs at a mean temperature of 38.08°C, peaking at 44.8°C. These temperatures are fairly average for power supplies, and it is good to know that even at 100% load, the temperature does not exceed 45°C. Please keep in mind that temperatures can vary from unit to unit and also can be affected by the environment in which the power supply is set up.

According to Gigabyte Press Releases, this product is quite new and was formally announced and shown at Computex this year, so, it appears that the power supply is yet to release in Western markets. Once it does release or Gigabyte confirms the pricing in € and/or $ we will update the review with our award. For now, all we have to say is that the power supply looks great, performs very well and lives up to Gigabyte’s usually quality. The single 12V rail, fully modular cables and silent fan make it a great product.