Thermaltake Toughpower Grand Platinum 1200W Review

Introduction

Today, Thermaltake Technology Company is back for another trip through our power supply testing program with a more flagship oriented product than we last saw from it. As a company, Thermaltake has a rather short history being founded in just 1999, but in that short time they have grown rapidly. While Thermaltake’s primary focus has been on thermal solutions, it has for some time now maintained a group of product lines dedicated to power supplies. The early power supplies in these lines were often of lower quality but over the years they have taken their power supply business in a new, and quite frankly better, direction as they paired with higher quality OEM’s like CWT and Enhance. Today, we are looking at a new product that is part of the Toughpower Series of power supplies from Thermaltake; the Toughpower Grand Platinum 1200W (TPG-1200F-P or PS-TPG-1200FPCPUS-P), as it seems to be listed at retail is produced in conjunction with Enhance.

Enhance Electronics Co. Ltd. was founded almost 30 years ago in 1986. While a major power supply OEM Enhance is not nearly as well known to most users as some other OEMs as its core business focus has been outside of the desktop market in areas such as servers, embedded, and telecom markets. However, its products have started to surface in the US consumer realm in the last year or so under the likes of SilverStone, Silverpower, Antec, Cooler Master, and Thermaltake, as well as the occasional Enhance branded model.

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Avant-garde or More of the Same?

The Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is the 14th power supply we have seen from Thermaltake, the fourth 1200W model, and the latest in the litany of variations of the Toughpower line. Each of these previous 1200W Toughpower models we have seen have been high-end products with very few details separating each of the various iterations. Indeed, as it stands today, Thermaltake also has three 1200W products on the market which makes differentiating these products somewhat more difficult. However, given our long history with products similar to this from Thermaltake we have a rough idea of what we would expect from Thermaltake’s newest 1200W unit. That said, we have also seen a number of similar 1200W products from other vendors so this unit will not just have to compete with the current crop of 1200W units from Thermaltake but also a rather full field of options. Before moving on to see how today’s TPG-1200F-P performs, let’s see what Thermaltake has to say about this unit and how it is supposed to separate itself from so many other products:

From Thermaltake’s new “Toughpower” line of high-end PC power supply units, the Toughpower Grand Platinum launched with a practical, fully modular design. It’s also powerful at 650-1200W. Its sleek look with a classy black finish makes a bold statement. Being 80 PLUS Platinum certified, users not only get a guaranteed eco-friendly PSU, but also a smaller electricity bill. The Toughpower Grand models are suited for gaming and PC enthusiasts, powering multi-core processors in combination with multi-GPU configurations.

With that out of the way, let’s move on and see what we have to look forward to when we purchase the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P power supply in terms of documentation, accessories, cable count, rail layout, output characteristics, and general build quality.

Overview

The first thing we are going to look at with the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is its packaging, accessories, and documentation. While normally none of these items is a make or break item for a power supply the packaging quite often contains a lot of information about the product we are purchasing. The inclusion of an owner’s manual that provides actual information about our product is also of great help. Accessories are almost unnecessary with a power supply as the unit is self contained, unless it is modular, but there are cases where a manufacturer can include useful accessories to make installation, routing, and use more efficient.

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The packaging of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is a bit different in styling from what we saw with the TPD-1200M recently. The main feature we get today is a cascading “platinum” background with the new TPG-1200F-P set to one side. We also learn that the Toughpower Grand Platinum units are “The Efficiency Avantgarde (sic) with Fully Modular Cables” which sure sounds like someone cracked a thesaurus while writing the marketing material for this unit and now we are excited to see what is going to be so innovative or experimental with this unit. Moving on, we see a row of seals along the bottom edge of the front of the box once more. These include seals for Haswell compatibility, an 80 Plus Platinum seal, a seal indicating that the unit has a 7 year warranty, and so on. A quick check of the 80 Plus website does not quite have this unit listed yet (at the time of writing) as being certified for 80 Plus Platinum but we will see how this unit actually compares to that criteria a bit later. When we move to the rear of the packaging, we find the power table (reproduced below), the connector count (reproduced below), and a few rather odd marketing points. Among these, shall we call these avant-garde marketing points because I think we should, we find that this unit has a synchronous rectification secondary with DC-DC VRMs, 100% high quality and reliable components, and a “Pure Aesthetic Outer Chassis” which is just an odd way to describe this unit. All in all, we aren’t finding anything here that is innovative and certainly nothing experimental yet. On the sides of the packaging, we find a few more advertising points including the mention of the 7 year warranty again which is a very solid length.

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The power information for the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is similar to what we saw with the Thermaltake TPD-1200M but there are some differences here today. The TPG-1200F-P has a 12v capacity of 100A or ~100% of the unit’s total possible capacity available if necessary. When we look at the minor rails, we start to see that things vary from what we saw with the TPD-1200M. Here, to start with, we see that the TPG-1200F-P has its minor rails capped at 120W (which is smaller than the TPD-1200M) in output between the two. Another variance we see is with the individual capacity of each minor rail as the 5v rail loses 3A compared to the TPD-1200M, while the 3.3v rail retains its 25A capacity. Moving on to the connectors paired with these output capacities, we find that the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P has eight modified 8-pin PCIe connectors, eight Molex connectors, and twelve SATA connectors. That arrangement is identical to what we saw with the TPD-1200M recently and, as with that unit, this arrangement seems about right for a high end 1200W unit that should cover the vast majority of users needs even in this very high-powered realm.

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Once we open the TPG-1200F-P, we find the power supply, modular cables, mounting screws, the power cord, and the user manual. The user manual is one piece of paper folded like an accordion and then folded in half. We find the same information repeated in 12 languages and this includes the information we already found on the packaging for all members of this new series. In addition to this, we find the most rudimentary of installation instructions. As before, there is not a lot that is good and there is also not a lot to see here so let’s move on now and look at the unit itself to see if that is better than the documentation.

Build Quality

As we already know the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P features a single 140mm fan design that is used in the same vein as 120mm fans in that these can provide for quiet cooling environments due to the ability to move a larger volume of air at slower speeds than a smaller diameter fan. The 140mm fan is just about the largest diameter fan we are likely to see in ATX power supplies given the physical constraints of the form factor. While great for quiet computing environments the key criteria in our evaluation is whether or not the cooling solution is sufficient, not necessarily it’s sound output level or form factor, although we certainly listen for offending units.

External Build Quality

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The exterior of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P has a look to it but I am not sure it is a “Pure Aesthetic Outer Chassis.” It is finished out in a flat to only slightly textured black finish with a few large multicolored stickers and a racing stripe around the center of the unit. The other cosmetic touches we get are decent enough but overall there is nothing amazing about this unit when it comes to the fit and finish that stands out. Now, that said, there is one GIANT issue with the exterior and that is the fan grille. While that fan grill may look cool to some people, it is a not a good design. Since the fan grille has those long slats cut in it and these are only supported in the middle of the unit the grill flexes badly. This flexing is made worse by the fact that the metal that this is stamped out of is very thin. The result is a fan grille that is very easily crushed into the fan hub during only mild handling or shipping which makes the unit very loud due to the scraping and grinding noise that occurs as the fan grill contacts the fan blades or hub. This is not a theoretical issue mind you, we have another product with this same design from Thermaltake that is still waiting on replacement for this very issue that occurred during shipping. Thermaltake needs to change this fan grille design and it can not do it soon enough because this is just not a good design!

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The Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P itself is ~7 inches long while the cables provide a serviceable length of ~23 to 26 inches to the first or only connector. The sleeving is all the flat FlexForce style cabling which is complete on all cables.

Internal Build Quality

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Once we open the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P, we see a slightly different Enhance platform than what we have been seeing most recently in Thermaltake and SilverStone products. The layout of the unit is traditional with the unit being dominated by the large characteristic nicely machined aluminum heatsinks from Enhance but, today, these are black instead of being raw aluminum as we have seen in previous models. There is also a loss of the secondary side heatsink we have seen before and in place of that there is a new arrangement around the main transformer. The reason for this change is somewhat obvious when we flip the unit over and look at the main PCB as the 12v MOSFETs are on here around the area where the main transformer is located and these are sinked by that aluminum heatsink on the top as well as by a thermal pad on the housing. The soldering that we see here is also generally very neatly done which is similar to previous efforts we have seen from Enhance on Thermaltake products. When we move back to the topside of the PCB, we see that the fan used to cool all of this is a ball bearing Yate Loon fan rated at 0.7A at 12v.

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Starting things off, the input filtering begins on the housing itself with some X and Y capacitors that are loosely attached to the housing. The input filtering then trails onto the main PCB where it is complete. Moving towards the primary side proper, we see a pair of bridge rectifiers that are attached to a heatsink as well as the main primary side heatsink. Speaking of the main primary side heatsink, attached to this we find the main switching transistors and as well as the PFC power components. In front of this, by the edge of the PCB, we find the coil for the APFC as well as the main input capacitors which are a pair of Matsushita (Panasonic) rated at 420v 470uF 105C. Lastly, on the rear end of the main PCB, we find a transformer.

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Moving over to the secondary, the large heatsink that we had previously seen on Enhance designs is gone. Instead, there is a smaller heatsink around the main transformer as we mentioned earlier. We also see a change in layout that results in the DC-DC VRMs moving to individual add-in PCBs. Mixed throughout the secondary, we see a smattering of Nippon Chemi-con standard capacitors as well as a Rubycon with some unidentified solid capacitors as well. Then, interestingly, as we swing around and look under the heatsink that is attached to the 12v MOSFETs we find some capacitors branded Dura which appear to be made by the Dura Tech. This is interesting as, when we move to the modular PCB, and we find the previous mystery DR branded solid capacitors again which are made by Dura Tech as well. The actual modular PCB is very well constructed and the soldering is a bit better than what we have seen before on high capacity modular PCBs from Enhance.

Build Quality Summary

The overall build quality of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is nice but I would hesitate to move it much further up the quality scale than that due to a couple of issues. The first issue is immediately found on the exterior where the fan grille construction is far too thin and inappropriately stamped which results in it being crushed into the fan blades and hub with the most minimal of pressure. Beyond that, the layout is fairly standard with finish being the standard slightly textured black finish but it does offer FlexForce style cables which is nice. When we move to the interior of the unit, we see a very modern design that is generally well constructed, if a bit different layout than we have seen from previous Enhance units when it comes to the synchronous rectification DC-DC VRM based secondary. The component selection sees being mixed even though we find excellent Matsushita, Nippon Chemi-con, and Rubycon capacitors. So, what is dragging this down? Well we have the relatively unknown Taiwanese Dura Tech capacitors showing up again in both solid and standard electrolytic form as well as a Yate Loon fan which is not what you might expect on a true top of the line product theses days. (Dura Tech was once incorporated in the US but its manufacturing and current headquarters is off shore.) Lastly, the integration still looks good and it is very clean in large part due to the well done soldering job we see throughout the unit and the change up in the secondary layout. So, let’s move on and see how this unit runs now.

Load Testing

For those of you that are curious as to some of the reasoning and equipment behind our PSU testing program here at HardOCP, we have put together a living document that shares a lot of the behind the scenes of the program. The testing we are conducting today is exactly as described in that document and will begin with a range of loads tested at 120v input including our torture test and then move on to the same set of tests at 100v input but without the torture test.

120v Load Testing Results

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Test #1 is equal to approximately 25% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45C. This makes Test #1 equal to 305W by loading the 12v rail to 23a, the 5v rail to 2a, the 3.3v rail to 1a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. The results of Test #1 show almost all of the positive DC output rails, save for the +5vsb, starting off above nominal with only a little variation between each connector on the 12v rail. The efficiency for this unit is starting at 90.55% with an exhaust temperature of 48C.

Test #2 is equal to approximately 50% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45c. This makes Test #2 equal to 595W by loading the 12v rail to 46a, the 5v rail to 4a, the 3.3v rail to 2a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. Test #2 sees all of the positive DC output voltages drop. The largest drop during this test was on the 12v rail which peaked at 0.13v followed by the 3.3v and 5v rails at 0.04v. The efficiency has moved up to 91.34% while the exhaust temperature has moved up to 50C.

Test #3 is equal to approximately 75% of the rated capacity of Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45C. This makes Test #3 equal to 896W by loading the 12v rail to 70a, the 5v rail to 7a, the 3.3v rail to 5a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. Test #3 sees the 12v rail drop by up to 0.10v while the minor rails drop by 0.03v on the 3.3v rail and 0.05v on the 5v rail. The efficiency in Test #3 drops to 89.37%, while the exhaust temperature rises to 52C.

Test #4 is equal to approximately 100% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45c. This makes Test #4 equal to 1171W by loading the 12v rail to 95a, the 5v rail to 5a, the 3.3v rail to 4a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. In the final regular test, we see another round of across the board declines in the main DC output voltages. In this round, the 12v rail drops by up to 0.11v while the 3.3v rail drops by 0.03v and the 5v rail drops by 0.02v. At the same time, the efficiency has dropped to 88.28% with an exhaust temperature of 55C.

Load Testing Summary

The load testing results for the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P are passing but, like the TPD-1200M, these are not that impressive. If we look to the voltage regulation first, we see the peak change on the 12v rail over testing was 0.34v. In addition to that, the 3.3v rail dropped by 0.1v and the 5v rail dropped by 0.11v. So then, how does this unit do compared to the competition? Well, overall, this unit trails the Seasonic PLATINUM-1200, Corsair AX1200i, and even its predecessor in the Toughpower Grand line the Thermaltake Toughpower Grand 1200W! On top of that, it actually trails the very first Thermaltake Toughpower 1200W we reviewed 8 years ago, and still use for testing today. After that, we see that it ends mixed compared to the Thermaltake Toughpower TPD-1200M we recently reviewed and the Enermax Platimax 1200W. As this unit is in the “second tier” of similar 1200W units we have seen, trails its much older predecessor, and is mixed compared to a lower end Thermaltake product of the same capacity it is hard to call these results “good” overall and there is a lack of progress in this line from Thermaltake so far. Moving over to the efficiency, we do see that the efficiency has increased and it is ranging from 88.28% to 91.34%. These values are good, but if this unit is truly going to be an 80 Plus Platinum level efficient unit we would expect those values to be a bit higher. However, we have not run those tests yet so we will just have to wait a bit to see how that pans out. All in all, this is not an amazing start for the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P. Let’s move on to the 100v tests and see if the unit does any better there.

Load Testing

For those of you that are curious as to some of the reasoning and equipment behind our PSU testing program here at HardOCP, we have put together a living document that shares a lot of the behind the scenes of the program. The testing we are conducting today is exactly as described in that document and will begin with a range of loads tested at 120v input including our torture test and then move on to the same set of tests at 100v input but without the torture test.

100v Load Testing Results

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Test #1 is equal to approximately 25% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45C. This makes Test #1 equal to 305W by loading the 12v rail to 23a, the 5v rail to 2a, the 3.3v rail to 1a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. The results of Test #1 show almost all the positive DC output rails starting off above nominal, just as they did at 120v. The efficiency for this unit is starting off lower than what we saw at 120v, as expected, with a value of 90.01% and an exhaust temperature of 49C.

Test #2 is equal to approximately 50% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45c. This makes Test #2 equal to 595W by loading the 12v rail to 46a, the 5v rail to 4a, the 3.3v rail to 2a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. Test #2 sees the same across the board drops in the DC output voltages that we saw at 120v. These changes are lead by the 12v rail which peaked at 0.13v. This is followed by the 3.3v rail at 0.06v and 5v rail at 0.04v. The efficiency has moved up slightly to 90.23% while the exhaust temperature has moved up to 51C.

Test #3 is equal to approximately 75% of the rated capacity of Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45C. This makes Test #3 equal to 896W by loading the 12v rail to 70a, the 5v rail to 7a, the 3.3v rail to 5a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. Test #3 once more sees the 12v rail drop by up to 0.12v while the 5v rail drops by 0.05v and the 3.3v rail drops by 0.03v. The efficiency in Test #3 at 100v moves down to 88.14%. At the same time, the exhaust temperature has risen to 54C.

Test #4 is equal to approximately 100% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45c. This makes Test #4 equal to 1171W by loading the 12v rail to 95a, the 5v rail to 5a, the 3.3v rail to 4a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. In the final regular test at 100v, we see the 12v rail moves down by up to 0.11v and the minor rails also match their changes from the 120v testing. Interestingly, the efficiency has dropped significantly as it hits 86.97% with an exhaust temperature of 58C.

Load Testing Summary

The 100v load testing results for the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P are very much like what we saw at 120v which is what we expect from quality power supplies. As such, this means that this unit did pass our load tests even if the unit did not post impressive voltage regulation numbers today. In addition, as nothing has changed in the voltage regulation at 100v, this unit has not made up any ground relative to the competition in this aspect of testing so it is still mixed up in the “second tier” units while trailing its predecessor product. The efficiency has also dropped a good bit in this set of tests, as expected from the lower AC input voltage, with a range of 86.97% to 90.23%. The exhaust temperature peaks at 58C which is rather mild overall. In the end, this does all seem to be in line with the previous results so let’s move on the Torture Test now and see how the unit does there.

Torture Testing

The final component of our load testing involves our 8 hour torture test. This test is meant to simulate what gaming or hardware enthusiasts might encounter when they use their systems for extended periods of time under stressful conditions such as 3D gaming or long term stability testing and benchmarking. However though, we do not suggest using your power supply at 100% loads for extended periods of time and our torture test does reflect this. We load the PSU being tested to ~80% of its rated capacity for 8 hours at a temperature of 45c. This is outlined in our testing Methodology should you wish to have more information.

Torture Test Results

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The Torture Test is equal to approximately 80% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45C. This makes the Torture Test equal to 941W by loading the 12v rail to 72a, the 5v rail to 11a, the 3.3v rail to 6a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. At the end of the Torture Test, the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is posting DC output voltage results that are very similar to what we have seen previously in Test #3 and Test #4. The only results that fall outside of these results is the 5v rail which is coming in 0.01v lower than Test #4. The efficiency is doing well at a value of 88.23% along with an exhaust temperature of 58C.

80 Plus Load Testing Results

The 80 Plus Compliance portion of this review marks the second revision to our living testing methodology. Readers can read more about this inclusion in our testing here in our methodology section, but briefly we will be examining the compliance of units advertised as being 80 Plus certified with its 80 Plus Test Report. While 80Plus compliance is NOT part of any official specification for power supplies similar to what is seen with the ATX12v and EPS specifications, it is a widely used advertising talking point that many users seem to use to guide their buying decisions. As such, we will be examining whether units claiming certain 80Plus specifications actually meet these advertised levels. You can also read our editorial about 80 Plus in this article entitled, “Why 80 PLUS® is Irrelevant to You When Buying a PSU.”

80 Plus Load Testing Results

Since the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is advertised by Thermaltake as being certified for 80 Plus Platinum, meaning that it is supposed to be 90%-92%-89% efficient at 20%-50%-100% load, we went ahead and ran the 80 Plus Load Tests as shown here with 80 Plus’ lower ambient temperature and the AC input voltage of 115v.

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80 Plus Load Testing Summary

As we see here, the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P posts efficiency values of 90.67%-91.83%-88.33% efficient using 80 Plus’ load testing parameters. This puts the unit just under the 80 Plus Platinum standards at both 50% and 100% load. However, we do use different equipment than 80 Plus for our testing and there is always a bit of component variation. As such, with two misses at up to 0.67%, it seems that the 80 Plus Platinum rating for this unit is going to be borderline on production units.

Load Testing Audio Impressions

The Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is an interesting unit in relation to its noise output given what we saw from the recent TPD-1200M. For instance, both of these power supplies have the same capacity, the same general form factor/fan layout, and are from the same OEM. On top of that, while both being efficient, both units fall a bit short of where we expect these to be on the efficiency side of things. Now, that said, these units do diverge in the platform used as well as the fan used to cool that platform. In the end though, is that enough to change the subjective noise output of the TPG-1200F-P relative to the TPD-1200M? Not substantially. As with the TDP-1200M, it was not until the Torture Test that this unit was noticeable in our load testing environment and even then the ramp up was well managed. Also as before, this controlled increase continued on into Test #4 as well. In the end, this unit is like the TPD-1200M in that it won’t win any absolute silence awards but if you are pulling 1200 watts out of this unit it isn’t going to be obscene and should still be a reasonable option for general desktop PC usage in this regard.

Transient Testing

The Transient Testing portion of this review marks the first revision to our living testing methodology. Readers can read more about this inclusion in our testing here in our methodology section, but briefly we will be examining the response of the power supply to a short duration load such as a RAID array spinning up or load change due to power draw from video cards etc. Ideally we would not see a deflection from the baseline voltage output when this occurs but that is simply not the case for the majority. We will be using the ATX12v specification for transient response as a guide.

The Transient Load Tester adds an additional 9.25A to the 12v rail for 10ms and an additional 3.75A to the 5v rail for 10ms at 25% total load and 50% total load.

Loaded/Unloaded

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12v/5v

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Test #1 is equal to approximately 25% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45C. This makes Test #1 equal to 305W by loading the 12v rail to 23a, the 5v rail to 2a, the 3.3v rail to 1a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a before the addition of the transient load. The results of Test #1 show a ~330mV drop on the 12v rail and ~160mV drop on the 5v rail when each is directly loaded. At the same time that the load was being triggered on the 12v rail, the 5v rail measured a ~80mV drop.

Loaded/Unloaded

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12v/5v

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Test #2 is equal to approximately 50% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45c. This makes Test #2 equal to 595W by loading the 12v rail to 46a, the 5v rail to 4a, the 3.3v rail to 2a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a before the addition of the transient load. The results of Test #2 show a ~320mV drop on the 12v rail and ~150mV drop on the 5v rail when each is directly loaded. At the same time that the load was being triggered on the 12v rail, the 5v rail measured a ~110mV drop.

Transient Load Testing Summary

The Transient Load Tests results for the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P are passing in a test that should not be difficult for 1200W units but routinely sees rather poor showings out of the 1200W units we have seen. Sticking with that theme today, the TPG-1200F-P saw peak changes when each rail was directly loaded of ~330mV on the 12v rail and ~160mV on the 5v rail. The unloaded 5v peak change during the 12v load was ~110mV. Those results mean that this unit bests just one power supply that is comparable and luckily that is this units predecessor the Thermaltake Toughpower Grand 1200W. Now, while that is progress and as such good to see, that was a very low metric as that unit was awful in this test. On top of that, this unit is mixed against the Thermaltake TPD-1200M, Enermax Platimax 1200W, Seasonic PLATINUM-1200, and the Corsair AX1200i with the TPD-1200M being a lower end product! So, progress is good but we would expect that progress to have been more substantial than what we see here today given other offerings from Thermaltake. Let’s move on now to see if this unit can take this little bit of momentum it has going into the DC Output Quality aspect of our testing and do something with it there.

Ripple Testing

Since voltage output is not the only concern when it comes to quality DC output we next examined the ripple and regulation characteristics of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P. We examine these points since unnecessary ripple can cause premature failure of sensitive components in a number of different PC subsystems.

The DC output quality was logged via our digital oscilloscope and the EasyScope II software package. Each divider horizontally represents 2ms while each divider vertically represents 0.05v or 50mv. The ATX specification states that a unit should remain at or below 120mV of ripple and noise on the 12v rail while under 50mV on the 3.3v/5v rails.

Control Test Graphing

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This image is the blank background control test on an unused connector from our SM-8800 during the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P testing. This lets us determine what the background noise looks like during testing. If at any time a trace deviates from this reading that is the noise/ripple being logged by the oscilloscope for that rail. As you can see the trace is flat and shows as a blue line obscuring the axis. If during a test the axis becomes visible but a waveform is hard to discern it is most likely due to the amplitude of the trace being small in relation to our voltage divider.

120v and 100v Input

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Test #1 is equal to approximately 25% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45C. This makes Test #1 equal to 305W by loading the 12v rail to 23a, the 5v rail to 2a, the 3.3v rail to 1a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. Test #1 sees the trace amplitudes of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P starting off a bit on the active side for the 12v rail. Indeed, the 12v rail sees a peak trace amplitude of ~20mV while the minor rails are peaking at less than ~10mV.

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Test #2 is equal to approximately 50% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45c. This makes Test #2 equal to 595W by loading the 12v rail to 46a, the 5v rail to 4a, the 3.3v rail to 2a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. Test #2 sees no real change as the 12v rail is coming in at ~20mV of ripple/noise while the minor rails are staying even with their previous value of less than ~10mV.

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Test #3 is equal to approximately 75% of the rated capacity of Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45C. This makes Test #3 equal to 896W by loading the 12v rail to 70a, the 5v rail to 7a, the 3.3v rail to 5a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. Test #3 sees the 12v rail move up to ~30mV of ripple noise while the 5v rail moves up to ~10mV and 3.3v rail is peaking at less than ~10mV of ripple/noise still.

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Test #4 is equal to approximately 100% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45c. This makes Test #4 equal to 1171W by loading the 12v rail to 95a, the 5v rail to 5a, the 3.3v rail to 4a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. In the final regular test, we see the 12v rail trace amplitude grow again as it is peaking at ~40mV of ripple/noise. The minor rails, however, see mixed results as the 5v rail has increased to ~15mV of ripple/noise while the 3.3v rail hits ~10mV of ripple/noise.

Torture Test

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The Torture Test is equal to approximately 80% of the rated capacity of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P at 45C. This makes the Torture Test equal to 941W by loading the 12v rail to 72a, the 5v rail to 11a, the 3.3v rail to 6a, the +5vsb to 2a, and the -12v to 0.3a. At the end of the Torture Test, we see the 12v rail has peaked at ~25mV of ripple/noise while 5v rail and the 3.3v rail have peaked at ~15mV and ~10mV respectively.

DC Output Quality Summary

The overall DC output quality of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is where this unit finally begins to hit something that resembles its stride and this could start to make this unit differentiate itself from some of the competition in line with its “Grand” title. In the beginning of testing, this unit had a relatively active 12v rail as it started the day off at ~20mV of ripple/noise but the minor rails were well behaved at less than ~10mV. These values would continue to increase a bit through testing for the 12v and 5v rails with peaks at values of ~40mV of ripple/noise on the 12v rail and ~15mV on the 5v rail. The 3.3v rail, however, would only ever see ~10mV of ripple/noise. Relative to the other comparable units we have seen to date, the TPG-1200F-P is better than the Toughpower Grand 1200W, the TPD-1200M, and the ancient Thermaltake Toughpower 1200W making it the best Thermaltake unit we have seen at this power level in this aspect of testing! Compared to other comparable units, we see that this unit bests the Enermax Platimax 1200W and the Seasonic PLATINUM-1200 but trails the Corsair AX1200i. With that being the case, this unit is sitting at a solid #2 position in this part of testing which finally gives us a result that is overall making this unit live up to its name. Let’s move on now to the conclusion to see how this all wraps up!

Conclusions

The Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is the newest power supply we have seen from Thermaltake and it currently represents part of Thermaltake’s top of the line power supplies the ToughPower Grand Platinum line. Over the years, we have seen a number of Thermaltake products including three other 1200W units and one of those units was a previous Toughpower Grand product as well. Today though, we see that Thermaltake has a total of three 1200W products on offer so this TPG-1200F-P is somewhat of an interesting product because we have to wonder; how will this unit separate itself from those other 1200W products that Thermaltake offers? Then, of course, we have to also ask how does this unit perform relative to other companies 1200W products? Certainly Thermaltake will have competition, but which competition is going to be harder for this unit to overcome? Thermaltake’s own products, or other brands’ products? Let’s move on and see!


HardOCP’s testing methodology is intended to very much push power supplies to their advertised wattage rating in temperatures that will represent some of the hottest computer enthusiast cases. So if a unit passes all our testing it is definitely not something to take lightly. In fact we expect more power supplies to fail our testing than make it through unscathed.


Build Quality

The build quality of the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P certainly is good overall, but it does have a few issues. Externally, this unit is like the recent TPD-1200M not so much in actual appearance, but rather in the just somewhat “Ho-Hum” nature of the overall look and feel. Where this unit shines is with the inclusion of the FlexForce style cables which is nice to see. However, with the good comes the bad and the bad today is the fan grille which is poorly designed and implemented. Due to the thickness and cut of the metal this fan grille distorts under the most minor pressure or handling so that it contacts the fan hub and the fan blades leading to a horrible grinding and ticking sound. Thermaltake can not fix this problem fast enough! Moving to the interior, we find that the build quality is generally very good even though there are few things that give us pause. Certainly, the design is very modern and it has a number of very good components such as the Matsushita, Nippon Chemi-con, and Rubycon capacitors that are coupled with very nicely done soldering and machining on the heatsinks. Things start to move downhill a bit with the fan choice and then end up with the questionable Dura Tech solid and standard electrolytics in the unit. This is all supported by a 7 year warranty which is great! The documentation is just taking up space without doing much for the user.

Load Testing

The load testing results for the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P are passing but the results lack that competitive edge we would expect from a flagship product like this. So, why is this unit not competing so well in the top end of the market in regards to the load testing? Well, it starts off with the voltage regulation which saw a peak change on the 12v rail of 0.34v and peak changes on the minor rails of 0.11v (5v) and 0.1v (3.3v). These results have this unit trailing all of the previous 1200W Thermaltake units we have seen (Thermaltake Toughpower Grand 1200W and the Thermaltake Toughpower 1200W) or tie with them (Thermaltake Toughpower TPD-1200M). In addition to that, this unit trails the Seasonic PLATINUM-1200, Corsair AX1200i while being mixed compared to the Enermax Platimax 1200W. This is a rather unimpressive start for the TPG-1200F-P as this unit is unable to best the much older or lower end Thermaltake 1200W units. Where this unit has a bit of an improvement is in the efficiency, though this is not a complete savior. The efficiency of the TPG-1200F-P was generally good but it is not the best we have seen among 80 Plus Platinum rated units with its range of 88.28% to 91.34% during the 120v load tests and 86.97% to 90.23%. during the 100v load tests. When we ran the 80 Plus tests, we saw an efficiency range of 90.67%-91.83%-88.33% using the 80 Plus test parameters. This means that this unit misses the 80 Plus Platinum rating by up to 0.67% at 50% and 100% load. This is rather unsurprising given the efficiency we saw in the regular load tests. Lastly, the TPG-1200F-P did pass our Torture Test and it did so in rather good shape that resembled the results which we saw in our regular tests.

The Transient Load Tests results for the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P may represent a pass but the results are simply not good relative to the competition. When directly loaded, the 12v rail showed a peak change of ~330mV and the 5v rail had a peak change of ~160mV when directly loaded while the unloaded 5v peak change during a 12v load was ~110mV. While those numbers do not look absolutely wretched, they are not good for a 1200W unit. On top of that, this unit could only best the Thermaltake Toughpower Grand 1200W. So, while this unit does improve on its direct predecessor that unit was so bad in this aspect of testing that besting that unit should be a given!

DC Output Quality

So far, the Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P has not been a great unit relative to the competition but that actually changes when we look at the DC output quality. Today, the TPG-1200F-P did start of a bit active on the 12v rail but in the end the peak 12v trace amplitude was ~40mV while the minor rails peaked at ~15mV. What makes these results so good is that this unit is only trailing the Corsair AX1200i among the comparable products while besting the Enermax Platimax 1200W and the Seasonic PLATINUM-1200. On top of that, this unit finally firmly steps out of the shadow of previous 1200W product from Thermaltake that we have seen. With that change, we finally see a result which starts to make this unit deserve a spot at the top of a product hierarchy at Thermaltake.

Noise

The Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P is interesting today in large part because we recently saw the TPD-1200M from Thermaltake which is also a 1200W unit that shares a number of characteristics and factors in common with this unit. What these units do not share in common is their 80 Plus rating level of efficiency, exact base model, and fan. In the end though, most of the changes that these differences might have imparted on this unit were somewhat washed out as this unit was not significantly quieter than the subjective levels of the TPD-1200M before. The good news about that is the TPD-1200M was reasonably quiet for a 1200W unit and only became noticeable during the Tortures Test. So, the vast majority of users will never even notice this unit relative to their PC much as was the case with the TPD-1200M. On the downside, there are things that could be done to further knock the noise level of the TPG-1200F-P down but at what cost? This is a 1200W unit, if you are pulling 1200W’s from it you surely have some fan or fans running that are going to be louder than most modern, efficient, overhead design ATX/EPS power supplies these days. Almost no one is using the old PC Power & Cooling model of PSU cooling anymore. So, if a user needs a 1200W power supply, this one should be fine for most cases where you will pull significant fractions of that capacity when it comes to noise output as long as you don’t expect a 1200W fan cooled PSU to be silent.

Paul’s Thoughts:

“Grand”, grand means big. “Grand” means extravagant. “Grand” means Great Wall of China ( 长城 ), or Bugatti, or the Amphitheatrum Flavium, or The Spruce Goose. Calling a power supply Grand therefore is going to be one of those things that invariably sets you up for comparisons that can be unfavorable and today that is the biggest problem with the TPG-1200F-P. The TPG-1200F-P is just too easy to compare to the TPD-1200M we recently saw and when we look at those two there are differences but these differences are just not “Grand.” Sure, the TPG-1200F-P is fully modular and it has better efficiency as well as better DC output quality but really are the differences so vast that when you look at this unit you can say….”That is worth an extra $55!” Yes there is some increase in performance relative to other Thermaltake 1200W units we have seen but this is a product that really feels like, while better in some ways, it could have used a bit longer in development so that when it rolled out it was “Grand.” Thermaltake did fine with the TPG-1200F-P, but it could have done so much more and hopefully it will with the next unit that carries the “Grand” moniker. Also, hopefully, Thermaltake will shorten the name as well because it is getting to be a mouth full.

The Bottom Line

The Thermaltake TPG-1200F-P easily passed all of our tests today. This PSU suffers in that it did not own that “Grand” moniker compared to the previous 1200W units from Thermaltake, but it is also consistently competitive with all the best 1200W units we have reviewed. For instance, the build quality of this unit was good but it was a bit bland on the exterior and while most of the components were “Grand” there were a few examples of things that were far from “Grand.”

When we move to the performance of the unit, the TPG-1200F-P only hit that “Grand” note hard in the DC output quality part of our tests as otherwise this unit was mixed to trailing against previous Thermaltake products, as well as many competitive products resulting in “good” by absolute value performances.

Turning to pricing on this unit, today we find the Thermaltake Toughpower Grand Platinum 1200W unit coming in at $249.99 with $6.99 shipping which is the same price that you can get the Seasonic PLATINUM-1200 for but significantly less expensive than what the Corsair AX1200i is selling for. In that context, since many of the other units we compared this too are in and out of stock due to age, this isn’t the worst deal going for users but it is just hampered by the fact that Thermaltake themselves have the TPD-1200M for so much cheaper ($191.23 with Free Shipping) and the 1200M gets so very close to this one in terms of performance. Of course you will likely not be seeing that product for sale much longer as it is moved to End-of-Life. Sometimes the worst competition is sibling rivalry.

The Thermaltake Toughpower Grand Platinum 1200W is a very good PSU with solid value that hangs tough in a very tough group of competitors. We would not question putting this PSU into any of our own systems. Much like we have seen from other PSU ODMs, it does little to truly push the category forward.

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Discussion

SOURCE:http://www.hardocp.com/article/2015/02/26/thermaltake_toughpower_grand_platinum_1200w_review/

One thought on “Thermaltake Toughpower Grand Platinum 1200W Review”

  1. Just bought the Thermaltake Toughpower Grand Platinum 1200W a couple of weeks ago and would certainly comment that while the fan is relatively quite when power-draw is minimal, it is generally very audible. An unacceptable loudness.

    Thermaltake describe this PSU as “Ultra Quiet Fan”. This PSU definitely is NOT ULTRA QUIET.
    My previous PSU, a 750W Antec was barely noticable.

    For me had I have known this, I would have look for a model that was proven.

    So nothing scientific here from me, just sharing my observations.

    Thanks for the article.

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