This week CORSAIR launched their first line of individually addressable RGB-lit power supplies, the CX-F RGB Series. The series is available in 550W, 650W, and 750W models in your choice of either black or brilliant white housing and cables. All are 80 PLUS Bronze-certified when it comes to efficiency, are fully modular units and backed with 5-year warranties. But, what makes these units rather unique is the fact that they feature a 120mm RGB fan with eight customizable RGB LEDs. You can then control the lighting effects with the onboard push-button control, CORSAIR iCUE software, or your motherboards addressable 5V ARGB header.
Corsair sent over the CX550F RGB power supply for us to try out in brilliant white. This model has an MSRP of $94.99 for those in the United States, €77.9 Inc. Tax for those in Europe or about CAD 114.99 exc. tax for our friends up north in Canada. The 650W model is $104.99 USD and the 750W model is $114.99 USD, so you are looking at $10 increments to increase the maximum combined Wattage by 100 Watts.
If you are looking to save a few bucks the Corsair CX-F series in black is actually less expensive than the white models. The Corsair CX-F black models are $89.99 for 550W, $99.99 for 650W and $109.99 for the largest 750W model.
The first thing we noticed when we opened the box is that the CX550F is a tiny power supply! It measures 150mm in width, 86mm in height and has a depth of 140mm. This is great news as it means that the CX-F RGB power supply series should easily fit in most PC cases.
You’ll also find the instruction manual, warranty manual, zip ties for cable management, power supply screws to mount it to your case, a power cord and a bag full of cables. It would have been nice to have a storage bag for the cables rather than a non-resealable plastic bag, but that likely helped keep costs down. The cables themselves are flat and with the exception of the ATX 24-pin connector as it is actually sleeved. The ATX 24-pin is 610mm in length and the 4+4 pin EPS/ATX12V is 650mm in length. That is plenty for most motherboards. The 6+2 pin PCIe, SATA and 4-pin Molex cables range in length from 700-800mm. The LED cable is 500mm and the 5V ARGB adapter is 300mm in length. These usually plug into a header at the bottom of a motherboard, so their shorter length shouldn’t cause any issues.
The single +12V rail on the Corsair CX550F is 45.8 Amps and both the +3.3V and +5 rails are rated at 20 Amps each. The maximum combined Wattage for the CX550F is of course 550 Watts and it does have protection functions to ensure it runs as it should. These protections include over current, over power, over temperature, over voltage, short circuit and under voltage!
Corsair shared this nicely labeled image of the inside of a CX-F power supply that shows where all the major components are located. Corsair went with a 105°C rated Japanese primary electrolytic capacitor from Hitachi and the build quality looked good inside of our unit. The solder job was good and the inside looked pretty much identical to the image above, so we just used the stock image.
The cooling fan inside is labeled Corsair NR120L that holds eight RGB LEDs and that is a new model to us. We had to ask Corsair, but this fan was designed just for use on their power supplies and uses a rifle bearing. Rifle bearings are similar to sleeve bearings, but are quieter and have a lifespan much like ball bearings.
One the outside end of the power supply you have the power cord connector, on/off switch and the RGB lighting button. This is the button that you need to press and hold for free seconds to cycle through the 9 RGB lighting presets. If you short press the button it will change the lighting color on the preset that you are currently on. It is simple to do and something that you can do from the outside of your case.
All Corsair CX-F RGB Series power supplies are full modular, so on the other end you’ll find all the connectors that you can use for wiring up your PC. You only need to connect up the cables you are going to use and can leave the ones that you aren’t going to need open for cable management and airflow purposes.
When it comes to performance we don’t have fancy load tester, but we did try out the CX550F and saw no issues while checking it with the PassMark Software Inline PSU tester. All voltages were within the approved limited as was the ripple on the main voltage rails. It seems bad to say this, but the CX-F RGB series joins a busy marketplace that is packed full of 80 PLUS Bronze certified power supplies. What makes this one stand out is the RGB lighting and how you can control it with Corsair iCUE software or your motherboards ARGB header. The RGB lighting looks good and if you have the right case you’ll be able to see it. Not every case orientates the power supply to be seen, so this is without a doubt a niche product that will appeal to certain PC enthusiasts.