Insights from the Inside: Interview with Antec’s Senior Vice President
Want to know more about Antec’s new High Current Gamer and High Current Pro power supplies? What’s so special about the LANBOY Air casing? Does Antec have any plans for watercooling fans? Anymore cool stuff this year? Hear them all from Scott Richards, Antec’s Senior Vice President.
Antec, Inc., founded in 1986, is a high-performance computer components and accessories maker. While they are best known for their casings – such as the popular Performance Plus 1080 AMG and the classic Performance One P180, and their power supplies – most notably the TruePower family, they also make other products such as notebook coolers and system fans.
Earlier today, VR-Zone.com had the opportunity to chat with Antec Senior Vice President Scott Richards over coffee at Sheraton Towers Singapore.
VR-Zone: Antec has been a proponent for ‘true power’ labels on power supplies for very long. How much do you think Antec has improved the PSU market for consumers over these years?
Scott Richards: We have infinitely improved it. It is not an exaggeration to say that Antec’s TruePower, originally released in 2001 was the first true high performance PSU for the consumer market. It was the first one that was built with three separate rails. It was the first one that could deliver its full rated power continuously. It was the first one that did not have the +3.3V / +5V limitation that used to be so common.
Antec was also the first company that put power supplies in colored boxes with infomation to make the whole product line consumer-friendly. It’s not just about marketing and ego; maybe somebody else would have done it eventually, but we were the ones who it did do it. Without TruePower, the market would not be what it is today.
VR-Zone: Antec has two new power supplies – High Current Gamer (HCG) and High Current Pro (HCP). Would you like to tell us more about them?
SR: We’re very excited about them. The HCG is the mainstream product line for the day-to-day gamer / performance user. It is going to come in 400W, 520W, 620W, 750W and 950W. The 750W and 900W will have a special look and a special case. The HCG will all have high current rails, so that you won’t have any problems with power limitations. HCG will all have a 135mm cooling fan, full Japanese capacitors, 80 PLUS Bronze certification, and a hard-wired design.
The HCP however, is a ‘cost is no object’ PSU. There will be four models; all four use full bridge phase shift topology. we have a competitor that recently came out with a 1200W model that uses full bridge topology, but the lower power ones are not full bridge anymore. All HCP PSUs will be 80 PLUS Gold. And all have unique features like a single-turn transfomer, very high quality input filtering… state-of-the-art design. Our 1200W is very compact for a 1200W unit. It has low component density on the board; we can cool it by pushing air through with a single 80mm fan and still keep it very quiet.
I can’t wait for people to get a look at it. I don’t think average users really need something that good, but certainly, high performance-demanding users, overclockers, those kind of guys… they will find it very interesting.
VR-Zone: Why is Antec still advocating a multi-rail design when other PSU manufacturers have gone the route of single-rail?
SR: (The HCG and HCP) are not single rail designs so you still have over-current protection (OCP). Antec very, very strongly believes consumer PSUs shld have OCP. We now see some companies coming out with 1200W power supplies with 100A on the +12V rail, not protected by OCP.
In your apartment, you have circuit breakers. Maybe you go three years, five years, ten years… the circuit breaker never trips. But when it does, you are glad it did because there is something wrong in the house and it prevented something more serious from occuring.
Likewise, we have never done away with OCP; we believe it is the responsible thing to do, especially in DIY power supplies that are going out to end users. We should have the maximum amount of saftey for their components; PSU is one thing, but how expensive is your motherboard, your CPU, and your graphics card? And how much did you invest in a high performance DIY PC? You’re putting it all at risk with a single rail design potentially - not definitely but possible. It’s like I have airbags in my car, but I’ve never gotten into an accident. My airbags have never gone out, but I still have them… (laughs)
Antec is not going away with the OCP design; we are going to give you as much current as possible on the +12V rail, with OCP.