For this comparison we are going to use two of the highest-end power supplies from the same manufacturer, with the aim that the fundamental difference between the two models is precisely that one of them is digital and the other is not. In this regard, in both cases we are going to opt for the “12” models, which are the last available on the market at the time of writing this article, so that the comparison will be as even as possible.
be quiet! Dark Power vs Dark Power Pro, features
Let’s start with the technical specifications of both sources to see them compared head to head:
|be quiet! Dark Power Pro 12||be quiet! Dark Power 12|
|Powers||1200W and 1500W||750W, 850W, 1000W|
|Certificate||80 Plus Titanium||80 Plus Titanium|
|Protections||OCP, OVP, UVP, SCP, OTP, OPP||OCP, OVP, UVP, SCP, OTP, OPP|
|Modular or Semi-modular||100% Modular||100% Modular|
|Types of cables||Sleeved||Normal|
|Self-regulated fan||Yes, be quiet! Silent Wings 3 135mm custom||Yes, be quiet! Silent Wings 3 135mm custom|
|Noise||dB (A) at 20% load 12.1
dB (A) at 50% load 12.4
dB (A) at 100% load 31.5
|dB (A) at 20% load 9
dB (A) at 50% load 9.7
dB (A) at 100% load 25.8
|12V rails||6 (can work in single rail mode)||4 (can work in single rail mode)|
|Amps on Rails||+ 12V1 (A) 40
+ 12V2 (A) 40
+ 12V3 (A) 40
+ 12V4 (A) 40
+ 12V5 (A) 45
+ 12V6 (A) 45
|+ 12V1 (A) 32
+ 12V2 (A) 32
+ 12V3 (A) 40
+ 12V4 (A) 40
|Dimensions||200 x 150 x 86||175 x 150 x 86 mm|
|Weight||2.41 Kg||1.97 Kg|
|CrossFire or SLI support||Yes||Yes|
|Warranty||10 years||10 years|
We are, as you can see, before two very similar sources, whose main differences essentially lie in the fact that the Pro model is offered in higher powers than the normal model and therefore has higher amperage on the rails and a greater number of connectors, but beyond hence its parameters are practically identical.
It is true that the Dark Power Pro version is an edition that the German manufacturer has wanted to launch on the market as Premium, and therefore includes details such as sleeved cables that we do not see in the conventional version, but we must also take into account that there is a fairly substantial price difference between the two, since the 1500W model of the Pro version exceeds 400 euros in price, while the normal 1000W model can be purchased for less than 300.
Leaving this aside, both power supply models are very similar, with their 80 Plus Titanium efficiency certification, the highest in PC, fully modular cabling, very quiet fan that keeps the power supply at a good temperature and a very similar design. , with a large grille that occupies the entire fan area and high-quality brushed aluminum construction.
So where is the difference? As we mentioned at the beginning, in addition to the Premium aspects of the Dark Power Pro version we have the fact that these are digital, while the normal version is analog. So is it worth paying the difference in price?
Why choose a digital font?
In general, analog circuits monitor and regulate all the functions and values of the power supply sufficiently, but a digital control provides us with greater tuning in their control and monitoring. Of course, let’s not confuse the concept that a source has digital control to that it has a display or a monitoring system via USB as in some cases, which are nothing but analog sources with an LED display or that allow its parameters to be monitored by means of software and the manufacturer sells them as digital sources when in reality they only have monitoring, but they are not.
The Dark Power Pro from be quiet! it’s a completely digital power supply, and that means even its regulation is. Analog power supplies like the Dark Power 12 use an analog circuit to monitor and regulate the output voltages they deliver to the PC on the DC and PFC (power factor correction) side, while on a digital source This work is carried out by a micro controller, a control element that monitors the PFC, the fan control, the regulation of the LLC-SR-12V circuits and the actuation points of the protection circuits.
The digital control therefore allows a much finer adjustment of all the parameters, but also a much faster reaction to problems in tripping the protection circuits, in addition to measuring the source values with much greater precision. As if this were not enough, the faster the MOSFETs of the LLC and SR circuits of the power supply can be adjusted, the shorter the dead times will be and, therefore, the greater the efficiency as well.
You already know that higher efficiency means an operation in which the source wastes less energy converting it into heat, and therefore helps to reduce the electricity bill at the same time that it heats up less, so it has a quieter operation and ensures a greater longevity of the device, so of course all are advantages.
So which of the two is more worthwhile?
There is no doubt that we are dealing with two very high-end power supply models, whose only substantial difference is the fact that the Dark Power Pro are completely digital sources, but if to this we add the «Premium» factors that be quiet ! As the cables have been added sleeved, we have a pretty substantial price difference.
Therefore, the be quiet! Dark Power 12 is a recommended power supply for users looking to have the confidence of having one of the best power supplies on the market, with great quality, efficiency, power and a 10-year warranty. However, the Dark Power Pro 12 model is already for the most gourmets who do not mind spending a little more money in order to have the best of the best, with an even greater efficiency (despite the fact that both carry the 80 certificate Plus Titanium) and Premium category details that end up making a difference.
Obviously, for us, digital control in a power supply is quite an interesting asset, but today we do not consider it essential, at least not when we compare it with a source of the size of the Dark Power 12. Therefore, If you are looking for a source of excellent quality we urge you to go for this normal model, but if you are looking for the best of the best and with digital control, then you will not regret spending more money to go for the Pro model.