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Hantol PSU: Fake PFC Made of Cement
Author: Gabriel TorresDate: April 18, 2012 - 9:39 AM PST

We discovered that power supplies from Hantol have a fake PFC coil, where the coil is made out of cement (yes, cement), so the power supply feels heavy. See the pictures and help us expose this fraud.

I bought this low-end Hantol Silent ATX 700 W Pro power supply for reviewing for Clube do Hardware, my Brazilian website, since it is quite popular down there. When I opened it, I saw the passive PFC coil (a component that looks like a transformer), and I was wondering how a power supply that probably cost USD 15 in China could possibly have a PFC circuit. Then I remembered the case of the “AOBAMA” (yes, you read it right) power supply that I saw online, which had a fake PFC coil made out of cardboard. In fact, there is an article at http://www.pcpop.com/doc/0/294/294565_all.shtml that shows several power supplies with fake PFC coils. Even though the article is in Chinese, you should take a look at the pictures. So, I decided to disassemble the PFC coil and bingo! Instead of a coil wrapped around iron plates, what I found was a piece of cement (i.e., a rock). See pictures below.

Hantol Fake PFC Transformer
click to enlarge
Figure 1: What looks like a passive PFC coil

Hantol Fake PFC Transformer
click to enlarge
Figure 2: What looks like a passive PFC coil

Hantol Fake PFC Transformer
click to enlarge
Figure 3: Really?

This was done to deceive users in two ways. First, people may assume that this unit has a passive PFC circuit, which is not the case. Second, with a piece of cement inside the unit, it is heavier, and a lot of users when buying entry-level power supplies tend to assume that heavier models are better, as they have more components and bigger heatsinks. Well, you simply can’t trust this “technique” anymore!
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