Review: NZXT's Power Supply, Cooling Unit Make Solid Component Choices


NZXT HALE82 PC power supply


They're a bit large to be stocking stuffers, but two products released this week by component maker NZXT are sure to light up many a holiday season. The first is the NZXT HALE82 series of PC power supplies, so named for their minimum, 82 percent level of efficiency under load. Also new this week is the HAVIK 120, a smaller version of the company's HAVIK 120 CPU cooling system with a fan so large it makes a ceiling fan look like a desktop unit.

The most prominent characteristic of the HALE82-series power supply unit is the 120-mm fan dominating its top panel. The whisper-quiet, two-bearing blower draws air down into the PSU and exhausts it out the back of the CPU. Responsible for cooling only itself, the fan alone on the 850-M draws about 10 watts.

An extra-long 8-pin connector makes HALE82 series units suitable for bottom mounting and for large tower designs. Yet its relatively small (6 x 6.5 x 3.5 inches) footprint allows it to fit in small cabinets as well. It's almost an inch shorter than an Antec 850-watt PSU we reviewed last year.

Its modular cable design reduces clutter and maximizes airflow within the cabinet by allowing just the needed cables to be used. A variety of flat peripheral cables is included, along with a cloth storage pouch for cables that await later expansion.

Available now, HALE82 power supplies are backed by a five-year warranty and NZXT's new "less than three" program under which replacement units can be cross-shipped in three days or less. The HALE82 650-watt unit lists for $110; the 750-watt for $120 and the 850-watt for $140. A super-efficient power supply should be on every serious gamer's shopping list this Christmas, and the CRN Test Center recommends the HALE82 series from NZXT.

NZXT HAVIK 120 CPU cooling system


A Fan That Really Blows

Also shipping this week is the HAVIK 120, a CPU cooling system that, like the HALE82, is dominated by a 120-mm fan. Actually, the HAVIK 120 has two, double the number of most competitive cooling solutions. The 1500 RPM maximum fans, each with 13 blades, offers rubber mounting for ultra-quiet operation and maximum air movement that's rated at about 75 cubic feet per minute (CFM).

Four 8-mm nickel-plated copper pipes carry heat away from the CPU and dissipate it in a densely packed array of heat-exchanger fins. The HAVIC 120's relatively small footprint of about 6.3 inches high by 5 inches wide and 4.4 inches deep, means it provides less strain on the motherboard than larger competitive products, according to the company. It's designed for Intel CPUs that use 2011, 1366, 1155, 1156 and 755 sockets and AMD AM3, AM2+ and AM2 sockets. Mounting brackets, grommets and other needed hardware for all supported socket-motherboard combinations are included in a list price of $55.