Fractal Integra R2 - Installation
Due to the fact that the Integra R2 was designed to be a space-efficient power supply, where better to test it than in a small case? For this instance, the case chosen is Fractal Design's Node 605 HTPC case and as you can clearly see, there was plenty of space for the PSU and the tangle of unused cables. In a smaller standard configuration case space might become an issue, but anything larger should prove to have ample room. Either way, there are still relatively few competitors packing the power densities we see with the Integra R2 at its size while still offering 80 Plus Bronze certification. This makes it a perfect companion for high-performance and efficient HTPC and LAN box builds.
As for the cable lengths, the majority of the cables had more than enough length to work with. However, given the way I chose to rout the CPU ATX connector (around the outside edge of the motherboard), I got the impression that the cable may prove to be a bit on the short side if installing the Integra into a large case, such as a Cosmos II. Then again, such fears could be without merit with the availability of space to rout the cable behind the motherboard.
Given our experience with Fractal Design's other products, when they say it's quiet, it really means you're likely to not notice it unless you're ear is against the case. By utilising a larger fan set to operate at lower speeds, the Integra R2 runs quieter and more efficiently while maintaining safe operating temperatures. Under full load, the power supply was always an afterthought against the backdrop of the graphics card and CPU fans revving up, yet the efficient fan design was pushing plenty of air out of the rear exhaust. Fractal Design has always put clean aesthetics and dull acoustics as the foundations for their designs, and we aren't remotely surprised to see that philosophy make its way fully into the Integra R2 power supply.
*NOTE: Since we are still in the process of acquiring proper power supply testing equipment (which is very expensive), we do not yet have the capability to do fully stability, power signal quality, and regulation testing. We don't use our PC to load the power supply and make voltage "stability" measurements, because it's highly variable, and would ultimately result in us drawing conclusions for something which just isn't right, no matter how carefully you try to set up your tests. So rather than doing an injustice to ourselves and our readers by pretending we can draw accurate-enough conclusions from this type of testing, we will stick to a tops-down and high level analysis of how it performs.