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Old 25-04-16, 10:01 PM
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Corsair RM1000i & Corsair Link 4.0

Corsair RM1000i PSU and Corsair Link 4.0 Review



Introduction:
Hey guys, welcome to my little review of the Corsair RM1000i High performance ATX power supply, and accompanying software Corsair Link 4.0.

Having recently had a power supply that was failing, I was in the market for something new. My old PSU was actually the noisiest part of my build. Despite having 13 fans (6 for each radiator, and 1 for the rear), and being water cooled, when the PSU was drawing juice, it was in fact the loudest thing in my case, even when idling when using Google Chrome and YouTube etc. So I wanted to try something with a more 'silent' approach.

Enter the Corsair RMi Series which have Corsair's Zero RPM mode, and are Gold Certified (so are 90% efficient at 50% load) which is more or less the amount of load I'll be putting on it). To top it off they are fully modular, (which let's be honest, these days is a must for any PSU going into a case with a window). And come with a whopping 10 year guarantee! So, lets take a look...





Firstly, the outside of the box. We can see the yellow branding associated with the Corsair RM series of PSUs followed through here with a nice, none 'gamerfied' approach. I actually rather like it, however I'm hoping at this point the sticker is less colour-coded on the side of the PSU, since I have no other yellow in my build, which if the image on the front is to be believed won't be the case!





Around the back we see the usual information, efficiency graphs, noise level and power ratings and that all important 'Ultra Low Noise' rating. A few more angles of the PSU, again showing a white sticker this time, so things are looking promising!

This 1000w unit has the following ratings: (graphics taken from Corsairs website for these)






If the fan curve is to be believed then when my system is idling around 350w, the fan should remain off and the PSU stay completely silent!



Now lets take a look inside the box!



On opening the box and emptying the contents we find the Power supply itself, wrapped in a branded protective velour bag. We also find the usual Corsair branded bag of cables, a standard 3pin kettle lead, the multi-language manual, warranty guide, and a small baggy with a metal 'Powered By Corsair' badge, cable ties and the necessary mounting screws. The cable ties came in handy for installation as you will see later.





Now we open the velour bag to find the PSU itself wrapped in a secondary plastic bag, and.. the sticker is white! Perfect! This will fit perfectly with my white Caselabs SM8 We also open the cable bag to find a plethora of cables:

1x ATX 24pin (20+4) cable (Braided)
2x EPS/ATX12v 8pin (4+4) cables (Braided)
4x PCIe 8pin (6+2) cables (Braided)
2x Sata cables with 4 Sata connectors on each chain with a 400mm starting length
1x Sata cable with 4 Sata connectors on the chain with a starting length of 550mm for those 'hard to reach' drive bays
1x 4pin Molex cable with 3 connectors on
2x 4pin Molex cable with 4 connectors on
2x 4pin Molex to floppy adapter cables
1x Corsair Link cable
1x MiniUSB to Motherboard Header USB cable

All the cables use black sheathed wire which is superb and looks much nicer than my old PSU, another tick in the box!

Side note: I have included photos of the cables in the imgur album here: Corsair RM1000i Photo Album but felt it was a bit excessive to add them all to this small review.

Having the main 24pin, PCIe and 8pin cables being pre-braided was a nice touch, although they are only braided as a single bunch the braiding appears to be of high quality, I would have liked to have seen 24pin heat shrink done a little neater, but asking much more of stock cables is a big ask of any manufacturer, and with Corsair selling individually sleeved cables as an add-on accessory, it makes sense for the stock ones to look as they do. The other cables are all in the 'ribbon' style and make for nice neat cable runs where necessary.





Looking at the PSU itself in more detail, on the back of the unit, where the kettle lead is attached, there was a nice reminder sticker stating 'Silent Operation at low to moderate loads. In this mode the fan will not spin.' I'm betting on this feature being a big win for me as silence is a must!





Back round the front we can see where all of our cables terminate at the PSU, not much to say about this except there is very little room left! I like the addition of the fan test button so you can at least see the fan spin some of the time The custom 24pin cable is split into 2 connectors at the PSU end, an 18pin and a 10pin connector, so make sure you check for cable compatibility when buying after-market kits, or sleeving your own of course!





Taking a quick look at the top/bottom (depending on how you like to orient your PSU) at the ratings sticker, we see it's passed QC checks which is always comforting to know!





Now on to popping it into the case, I decided to remove the PSU extra 'shelf' from the bottom of the case as this new PSU is actually a little smaller than my old one at 150mm x 86mm x 180mm. It definitely makes for a nice neat looking little PSU, even in such a massive case I think it looked great, the label being white really helped it fit in with my case and makes matching it with any future builds a breeze. I think it would look just as good in a black case as it's not overpowering at all. Super impressed.





Here you can see I've got it all wired up to the system that was already and waiting for it. There's a little discolouration of the fluid from the previous build but this will be dealt with at a later date, I have some replacements to go in, but time being limited I wanted to get the PSU in and tested for now and base my review on a straight comparison to my old one, since adding different hardware would mean different idle/load usage and for the moment a straight swap of PSU felt like a more fair assessment. The braided 24pin, 8pin and PCI Express cables were easy to work with, though a little tough to bed due to being singularly wrapped. But this could easily be overcome with a cable kit from Corsair, or someone like Cable Mods. For stock cables I was still impressed. No multi coloured 24 pin was a huge bonus from my last PSU, all black cables are definitely the way forward and should be the norm by now.





Now for the back of the case, which, all things considered is relatively tidy for me, I need to pick up some sleeving for the extensions (a job for the summer and the rebuild at this stage) but the main PSU cables are of almost the perfect length, I found them a little stiff, but that to me means the cables inside are of high quality. The included cable ties were a huge bonus here as I'd totally misplaced my bag of cable ties. I was able to tame most of the cables just fine. Yes, that's a 12 port fan controller designed to go in a DVD bay, but who wants that on the front of their case? Especially with so much room behind the case, the door shuts *just* so it's hidden away where no one can see it





Now onto Corsair's new Link 4.0 software. This is my first outing with the software and after hearing there was some incompatibility with the previous revisions and Windows 10 I was hoping things would be alright. And after a quick download from Corsair's website and a few seconds of installer later, up it popped. Lets take a closer look!





Quite a Clear and Bold interface here, without any configuration at all, already showing me my motherboard temperatures, VCPU, all my individual core temperatures, the package temperature, CPU load, both GPU temperatures and fan RPMs (0rpm because water blocks) and the new RM1000is voltages, temperature and Fan speed. Nice to see this all in one place.







Continuing through the app to the Configure screen shows a side view of one of many of Corsair's popular cases. You also have the option to use an image of your own if you prefer. You then drag and drop the monitoring data blocks and put them on the image in the place you choose. Giving you a nice at-a-glance overview of your system. There's one for every temperature sensor shown on the Home screen, and an extra one for the RM1000i's fan speed as well. Quite a nice visual overview of what's going on in your system, and I'm sure if you added other Corsair Link enabled devices they would show up here so you can see those too.








Clicking on these Monitoring blocks allows some customisation, so you can rename them as you see fit, and once you go into the notification options, you'll see where it really shines. You can set a Min and Max value and use that as a trigger for any and/or all of the following options:
- Shut down your PC if it stays outside that value for x number of seconds.
- Run a file of your choice.
- Trigger customisable RGB LEDs to a colour of your choosing.
- Set all fans to 100%

The LED options is a nice touch that will tie in well with Corsair's ever expanding line of RGB products.
I quite like the idea of letting it run a file as well, you could tie this into all sorts of notification systems, using something like AWS Lambda in conjunction with something like Twilio to remotely alert yourself or others via text or voice message if there really is something wrong with your PC. Or if you're a budding 3D Artist doing your own renders, you could use minimum values to alert you when a render is complete because the system will have cooled down.

Perhaps a little advanced for most users, but to a network developer or 3D artist, that's kind of cool and I like that More options is always a good thing!! Props Corsair!






Clicking on the fan for the PSU gives you the option to rename it as with the other sensors, but to also change from default mode, to a fixed percentage anywhere from 40% all the way up to 100%. If you want absolute control of your fans, this is a great feature. Personally because I seek silence where ever possible I'll be keeping mine on default and letting PSU idle at 0rpm for maximum quietness.

You can set all these settings up for different profiles as well, the software has a built in Quiet, Balanced and Performance mode. So you can switch from super quiet to headphones on gaming mode at the click of a button. You can make and customise your own profiles as well, so you could add one for gaming, rendering, and perhaps one for while you're away to turn on a bunch of notifications, all done with a couple of clicks instead of having to do it every time you want to switch your settings. Another very nice touch.






Under the main options menu under settings we find some welcome UI customisation, allowing you to put your temperatures in Fahrenheit if you're that way inclined, run the App at Windows StartUp if you're into that, adjust the grid size for the tiles used on the previous sensor positioning page, as well as change the background and main overall theme/skin of the app.
Personally I like the Dark theme as that fits with my all-black desktop nicely. You can adjust the language, text colour and accent colour to really tweak it to fit your preferences. Here I've changed it to a darker blue to match my desktop. This comes through on all screens of the app, even down to changing the highlight colour of the hexagons in the background, a subtle but nice change


Under Devices you'll find the list of currently connected Corsair Link enabled hardware, and their relevant firmware revision if applicable. And of course About shows you the version you're running (I'm currently running 4.2.2.27) with a handy dandy 'Check for updates button'. I'm not sure if the software checks on it's own for newer revisions on start up as I already have the latest version available, but that wouldn't be an unwelcome feature as well. There are also links to their Online Support website, Forums and of course Homepage. Under those we also see some social media links if you'd like to keep up to date on Corsair's endeavours. (Their April 1st gags are usually a laugh, I recommend those).






Now just quickly moving back to the Home section and clicking on the RM1000i section now gives me the power usage graph! As you can see the new darker blue theme looks quite nice here. By clicking on the Temperature value you can set up the previously mentioned alerts, and you can also bring up the fan controls as before by clicking on the PSU fan option. Finally on the RMi series you have the option to switch between single and multi rail using the Enable OCP option,
- On being Multi Rail (with OCP enabled)
- Off being Single Rail (with OCP disabled)

I have to admit, I was a little confused as to why it was labelled OCP and not something more clear. A bit of googling shows this is associated with Over Current Protection (what I expected it to stand for) and that it toggles the Single and Multi Rail mode as well, while also disabling OCP. I'd have liked this to be a little more clear, and perhaps better explained. After looking at the previous revisions of Corsair Link, it looks like it used to say 'Enable OCP (Multi-Rail Mode)'. Perhaps this could have stayed? It looks like there's plenty of room for some text on the GUI...
I myself will be leaving OCP on

As can be seen in the graph, idling my system is using a little over 300w so the fan stays in 0rpm silence mode, which is lovely! I did some testing while playing the division and the fan only spun up to around 550-600rpm under around 650w of load, and was still inaudible over the pumps, so this is definitely a win.







The final option 'Graphing' gives you a pop-out window showing all your temperature and fan rpm graphs, as well as your 12v, 5v and 3.3v voltage graphs all in one handy window. You can choose which of these to include using the configure options seen in the second picture. If you then tick the Log to file option Link will then save the log data to an easy-to-process comma delimited .csv file periodically. You can process this raw data into a nice graph and see what your system was up to while you were away, or use them for benchmarking purposes nice n easy!
Another really nice feature for keeping tabs on your system while you're not sitting at it, or a good way to track what your system is up to during a gaming session (which is the more likely of the two for me).



In conclusion then, I'm extremely pleased with this PSU and with Corsair Link 4.0. I've done my fair share of the rounds of available power supplies throughout the years, from the early days when the first 500w QTec units arrived that blew up, to the 450w Antec units that seemed simply invincible, all the way through to Coolermaster's offerings, but all the while not having tried a Corsair unit, perhaps that was my mistake?

Corsair has been making PSU's with various OEMs for some time now and seem to have perfected their craft, now able to stuff 1000Watts of power into such a small unit, and passively cool it up to around a 400w load. And even then, still cool it silently when running a decent load on it. I have to say it's impressed me. On top of all that, offering an excellent 10 year warranty with the product just seems above and beyond, I don't think I've ever had a PSU with that kind of clout behind it. A 10 year guarantee on any PC component isn't to be sniffed at, let alone something that is essentially the heart of the system.

All this combined with the new Corsair Link software is definitely a winning package, being able to monitor the entire system in one place, have it logged, and have notifications and other options available is a really nice touch. I like having the options of all this data to hand when I want it, and frankly to hide it away if I don't . Couple that with the option to switch between multi and single rail and Over Current Protection in-software and frankly I'm sold. There was the small niggle of the labelling of OCP/Multi Rail but once you know what the button does it's not something that you really need to mess with more than once, it might be nice to make it more clear precisely what it is though.

I can see this unit sticking with me for quite some time. I would have liked to have perhaps seen slightly neater heat shrink on the 24 pin, but I think if it had been any closer to the connector, bending it to fit through a cable tidy hole would have been difficult, so really it's a moot point. The SM8 was a stretch for it, that I won't deny, but over time the stiff cables will come to sit nicely. The silent operation is sublime compared to previous units and is a welcome addition for a silence-seeking builder, so I'd definitely recommend it to anyone seeking a similar level of noise.
I'm not well known for speaking super kindly about brands, let alone handing out praise... but Corsair seems to have got it right this time.

Review Main System Specs for reference:
- Asus x79 Deluxe
- Intel 3930k
- 32GB Corsair Vengeance 1866Mhz DDR3
- 2 x 3GB Gigabyte Windforce 780GTX - SLi
- Xonar Essence STX
- 2 x 256GB Samsung 840 Pros
- 1 x 256GB Kingston HyperX
- Corsair RM1000i
- Caselabs SM8
- Windows 10 Pro 64Bit

Quick addendum: I originally wrote that the warranty was for 7 years, as it says on the manual, but Corsair have in fact extended this to a 10 year warranty so I've updated my review with the updated information. Thanks to Pascal for pointing that out to me.

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Old 25-04-16, 10:48 PM
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Nice review!
I couldn't get Link to work properly since the update to the new version but tbh I haven't tried that hard to fix it - I have CAM running as well and with my H100 being the original version and not USB controlled I decided it wasn't really a priority. I do love the features though so for a clean or new build it would be worth using.

I agree all black cables should be a standard as well for all PSU's. I think the only downside would only be for people re-pinning their connections or sleeving their own cables but that would be a very small minority.

Now where's the build log? Is that a MOLEX going to the sound card? That must have some serious amplification going on
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Old 25-04-16, 11:36 PM
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Nice Customer review there Sub I need to get my butt in gear and do one myself for this new freesync monitor
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Old 26-04-16, 07:48 AM
Corsair Pascal Corsair Pascal is offline
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Awesome review there SuB, but did you know we have actually upgraded all warranties on the high end PSU's from 7-10 years!
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Old 26-04-16, 08:10 AM
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SuB SuB is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Corsair Pascal View Post
Awesome review there SuB, but did you know we have actually upgraded all warranties on the high end PSU's from 7-10 years!
Thanks Pascal

I did not! I was looking at the information on the back of the manual, I'll just pop a quick edit in!

I've only really known of EVGA offer that level of warranty in my experience, and I don't think they do that anymore. Very impressive
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Old 26-04-16, 03:11 PM
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nice review dude, still would be nice if i could set a fan curve up for my HX1000i
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Old 27-04-16, 01:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Permafrost View Post
nice review dude, still would be nice if i could set a fan curve up for my HX1000i
Thanks dude glad you liked it
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Old 27-04-16, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Permafrost View Post
nice review dude, still would be nice if i could set a fan curve up for my HX1000i
No need. Its silent. lol
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Old 07-05-16, 07:03 AM
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very nice review thinking about picking one up for my new build
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Old 07-05-16, 09:39 AM
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Very nice can't beat Corsair PSUs tbh.
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