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  • WoodyPWX - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    Ordered, thanks! Reply
  • mark28 - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    How's their fanless PSUs now? The last few I got had a really annoying constant buzzing sound. Reply
  • Sivar - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    I returned two of them before I ordered a Rosewill SilentNight (same as Kingwin Stryker STR-500). I heard the new generations of Seasonic are almost always silent, but I'm happy with the SilentNight, too. Reply
  • stratum - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    I got a fanless Seasonic PSU last month and the constant buzz was more annoying than a PSU with a fan. Waste of money when my main reason for getting it was negated. Reply
  • motas - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    For my builds that rarely draw 250 W max, after how reliable the PSU is, the next thing I care most about is the noise. Not just dBA numbers but also how it sounds. You could look at the frequency spectrum and most of the sounds people would find more annoying would show a pattern. A fan putting out 30 dBA could sound "worse" than one at 35 dBA. Last I care about is efficiency. As long as the PSU can reliably provide the requested power then I'm good. I'm not runing servers or crypto miners at constant load 24/7. Reply
  • E.Fyll - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    "A" in "dB(A)" stands for "acoustic", i.e. it is within the part of the dB range that your ears can perceive. You are actually right that a fan rated at 30 dB(A) can actually sound worse than a fan rated at 35 dB(A), but that's because these readings/ratings are being taken inside anechoic chambers. It is possible that due to vibrations or simply because of the frequency the sound is emitted at (reflections, echo, etc), the first fan could actually sound worse than the second fan inside a real room; but the instruments would read that as well. We are doing noise testing inside a real room so that is as close to reality as it gets.

    I understand that some "types" of noise might be more bothersome than others to some people, but that is relative and mostly psychological; I cannot possibly assess that quantifiably.
    Reply
  • morso - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    How about provide a frequency spectrum plot. You know, white noise vs colored noise. People can then decide for themselves if the sound is good or not. Reply
  • g.davis - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    If that's not possible then maybe record the sound and post an audio file. Hopefully, the recording process can be standardized. That buzzing sound from a fanless Seasonic PSU was extremely annoying especially for a bedroom PC that doesn't get turned off. I'd rather get a louder PSU with a fan. Which I did. Reply
  • E.Fyll - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    You actually suggested inserting a graph with spectral profiles in a review?

    People cannot decide "if the sound is good or not" by looking at such a graph, not only because it will not tell you anything of actual relevance but because, well, they cannot read it. Aside the fact that only a handful people can actually read such a graph, do you realize the kind of equipment that is required to generate it? Space aside, we are talking about hundreds of thousands of dollars.

    This is absolutely out of the question, sorry.
    Reply
  • tosisgray - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Why not provide an audio recording. Sometimes it's the subjective parts people care about most. With your statement, it seems you're not targeting professiosnals anyway. Efficiency doesn't matter much to the crowd you seem to be targeting unless the vendor is falsely advertising their product. These PSUs will likely go inside homes. Maybe bedrooms and living rooms. Reply
  • E.Fyll - Sunday, March 02, 2014 - link

    Because an audio recording will be:

    a) distorted by the sound recording device,
    b) distorted by the sound playing device and,
    c) entirely unrelated to the original volume.

    Even if you consider that a) the recording device is perfect and b) the playback device is perfect, plus d) that the sound file is uncompressed and of very high quality, the end result will be affected simply by how high is the volume knob of each user.

    That's misleading, so I'm not going to do it. It has no practical meaning over me simply stating how the unit "sounds like" in the text.
    Reply
  • pintos - Sunday, March 02, 2014 - link

    How are you measuring the sound level? Wouldn't that have the same problems? Reply
  • pintos - Sunday, March 02, 2014 - link

    Also, same question for the rest of your equipment. Don't they also have measuring issues yet they're fine to publish? Reply
  • emn13 - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    You're wrong.
    frequency spectrums aren't hard to read: flat or smooth are plain noise (white or otherwise), and bumpy is tonal. If you include a time component it gets a little messier, but then, we're not talking high-precision sound here, just a general feel of the music; even that may be acceptable.

    Furthermore, it certainly doesn't take any high-cost equipment: any bog-standard computer mic will do a surprisingly good job, and if you spend a *little* effort getting a decent (not necessarily best-of-the best) mic and verify the system's quality using a a simple frequency response plot, you can get more than adequate quality for this purpose for at most a few hundred dollars - likely less, but it's not worth your time at that point.
    Reply
  • E.Fyll - Sunday, March 02, 2014 - link

    Well, frequency spectrums are very hard to read, they do are entirely useless to the standard consumer (the same "type" of noise can actually sound a lot different) and if you think that you can do it with just a "computer mic", well, I have nothing more to say...

    If I attempt to do anything like that, I would have wasted time and resources on something entirely useless and ridiculously inaccurate. Sorry, that I cannot do. Call me an arrogant perfectionist but I would rather not do something at all if I cannot do it correctly.
    Reply
  • quest for silence - Monday, March 03, 2014 - link

    "A" in dB(A) stands for "A-weighted"; the further explanation as "the part of dB range that your ears can perceive" is just meaningless. Reply
  • quest for silence - Tuesday, March 04, 2014 - link

    "A" in "dB(A)" stands for "A-weighted", so that the subsequent state: «i.e. it is within the part of the dB range that your ears can perceive» is meaningless. Reply
  • g.davis - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Ya, it'd be nice if AT can get numbers for reliability of PSUs somehow. Well, actually, for any electronic device they cover (ie. HDD, SSD, RAM, notebooks, GPU, motherboard, complete systems, etc.). However, I doubt that's possible aside from an occasional external report. Reply
  • Archipelago - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    I have had a Seasonic 400W fanless and it's totally quiet. The only time I heard it is the faint click when I shut down. Reply
  • mark28 - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Thanks for the info. This makes me wonder if Seasonic has quality control issues which is far worse than my noise issue. Maybe they just don't test for noise output during quality checks but that kind of ignores a large part of the people who buy fanless parts specifically to reduce noise regardless of efficiency.

    The noise from the fanless Seasonic PSU I had was so annoying that I replaced it with an actively cooled Corsair one. The difference was like listening to a crying baby and the static noise you hear in between radio stations. Even if it's quieter in volume level (ie. several rooms away), the crying of a baby is way more annoying than static noise.
    Reply
  • Samus - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Just buy a PCP&C 750 Quad and take the fan out/unplug it. I've had mine like this for 5 years. It doesn't even get warm pulling 300 watts. JohnnyGuru found it to be the coolest running PSU he ever tested at full load, so running 1/2 load doesn't even require active cooling. They have no electronic noise.

    They're $50 used on eBay.
    Reply
  • tosisgray - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Thanks! That's the kind of testing I want to see. Embarrassingly, I have not heard of JohnnyGuru before. I will look him up. Reply
  • geniekid - Monday, March 03, 2014 - link

    I've owned 4 Seasonic power supplies. One of them had coil whine, and it wasn't fanless. Reply
  • nagi603 - Thursday, April 03, 2014 - link

    I have an X-400. Best PSU I've ever bought. No buzz, no problem of any kind. Reply
  • MuteyM - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    Going forward, it would be nice if the graphs used Wattage instead of Load % on the X-axis. This would make it easier for people to compare differently-rated PSUs for their own particular needs. For example if I know my computer idles around 50W and maxes at 400W, I could compare all reviewed PSUs and see which are the most efficient at my particular use cases.

    With Load % as it is now I have to manually do a bunch of math for that comparison.
    Reply
  • GiantPandaMan - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    Good idea. Or they could just dual axis it. Reply
  • E.Fyll - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    That actually is a very good idea. I will see if I can make a dual axis graph or simply replace the % axis with wattage. Thank you MuteyM. Reply
  • lever_age - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    It's only Seasonic's X and Platinum lines that use the San Ace fan. All others pretty much use an ADDA.

    Also, the B in AD1212MB-A70GL should indicate it's a 2BB fan, not hypro. This is the model used in most of their power supplies and often even the ones they build for other brands.
    Reply
  • lever_age - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    ...that is, in the current lineup. Prior M12D or whatever previous high-end model may have also used San Ace. Reply
  • Flunk - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    Not to nitpick, but if you're putting together a "powerful cyptomining system" you generally don't use a case at all. Not only that, but you're going to need more powerful or multiple power supplies. Reply
  • WithoutWeakness - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    I think that was the point. The only real flaw with this unit is that it got fairly warm before the fan kicked into high gear in the hot box testing, which is already grasping at straws to find a flaw with this unit. The only feasible scenario where that sort of issue would arise would be if you were running the PSU at or near full load for a long time (such as powering a mining rig) and had it installed in a case with poor airflow. Given that no one in their right mind would build their mining rig in such a case it should be a non-issue for this power supply and can safely be overlooked. Reply
  • yhselp - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    When looking for a silent/fanless PSU why not just buy a Corsair AX760 (non-i)? It's practically fanless until about 530W. Reply
  • Egg - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    Perhaps because it's $170 ($150 after rebate) on Newegg? Reply
  • Daniel Egger - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    So when will we get reviews of no-nonsense PSUs? 650W? Really? I don't even have so many computers in one place I could put together behind such a thing... Since the graphs start around 5% which should be 32.5W which is more than my systems consume when idle I'm wondering what would happen below that, is the efficiency just abysmal or wouldn't it even run stable? Reply
  • JarredWalton - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    Are you running laptops or NUCs? Because getting down to 32W on any decent system that has a discrete GPU and a standard voltage CPU is pretty difficult. My own Haswell setup (granted, with two GPUs) idles at more than twice that amount. The difficulty is in getting the PSU companies to send in lower wattage units, and in finding good quality lower wattage PSUs as well (that don't break the bank). A 75% efficient PSU putting out 30W draws 40W whereas a 90% efficient PSU with the same output draws 33.3W -- you could save 7W per system with the higher efficiency. Woot? But regardless, it's the other aspects (noise, ripple, voltage regulation, and sound levels) that are generally more important than efficiency.

    There's a corollary to this as well: if you're running a system that only draws 30W of power at most, how important is the PSU? There's a reason the lowest wattage 80 Plus Platinum PSUs on Newegg start at 400W and are relatively uncommon. I count five Platinum PSUs rated at less than 500W, seven at 500-550W, and another seven 600-660W. In theory, few people need more than that, and yet there are another 28 Platinum models that are rated at 700W or higher. And of course, the least expensive 80 Plus Platinum PSU is a $90 550W model with the 400W Seasonic SS-400FL2 (granted, fanless) priced at $120. Paying more for "less" would be a tough sell, and creating a high quality PSU often has a minimum cost that ends up being more than most users would pay, regardless of how good it might be. So, we end up with most of the real quality PSUs being rated at much higher wattages than most of us use/need/want.
    Reply
  • Daniel Egger - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    > Are you running laptops or NUCs?

    No, just regular systems. My homeserver is pulling 35W from the wall right at this moment. It's a Core i5-2500 (95W) running Xen and a couple of VMs, has 3 NICS, 12GB of RAM in 4 slots, 1 7200 RPM drive and a Samsung 830 SSD. It's a Fujitsu build with some Fujitsu branded 280W power supply rated with 83% efficiency at 20% load, there's even a successor available that's rated with 88% efficiency at 20% load.

    My notebook with discrete AMD 6750 draws even less than that in idle.

    > But regardless, it's the other aspects (noise, ripple, voltage regulation, and sound levels) that are generally more important than efficiency.

    I could hardly disagree more. Where I live at the moment each Watt consumed 24/7 costs me 2,20€ per year and the prices know only one direction... Of course there're potentially also additional costs that have to be considered like UPS and cooling which are not even on a linear scale for investment costs...

    20€ more for a a mere 5W constant power saving are a complete nobrainer...

    Sure power quality and noise are interesting aspects for a PSU but unless you have a total lemon they're usually perfectly fine so the only really interesting aspect of a PSU is the efficiency at the target workload.

    I'm also quite certain that someone who fires up a gamers rig with dual/quad GPU and generally wasteful components really doesn't give a crap whether a PSU does 80 or 85% at 600W. For sane persons with normal systems it does matter quite a bit though, or at least it should...
    Reply
  • Sleepingforest - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    First of all, a gaming rig's efficiency is going to matter more, if anything, since all it does is run full tilt, and that's where every percent matters most when it comes to savings (although, even in places 2-3x more electrically expensive than the US, it is very difficult to save money with higher rated PSU). I actually only have mine either completely on and gaming, or totally unplugged.

    Second of all, the vast majority of PSUs have terrible efficiency when the load drops to a very low percentage of it's capacity--even units like a SFX 300W unit (here: http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReview... can only pull around 80% efficiency at loads around 30W. It's just not part of the average PSU's design to perform very well at that low of a load.
    Reply
  • Daniel Egger - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    > First of all, a gaming rig's efficiency is going to matter more, if anything, since all it does is run full tilt,

    If someone's seriously into buying gear that *wastes* >>50W just to squeeze out a few additional fps this person really don't care about efficiency at all. It's like buying a Porsche and then making sure it runs completely on renewable fuel to do something good for the environment...

    > Second of all, the vast majority of PSUs have terrible efficiency when the load drops to a very low percentage of it's capacity

    That's exactly the reason why it is important to have good low capacity units. Because the higher the rating the worse it will perform at low load, a) because there's something like a base consumption every "on" unit will have for the transformer and all the switching electronics which highly depends on the maximum load and b) it's not impossible but really costly to optimise a PSU for a wide band of loads and since usual certification labels only require testing at certain loads this is where the optimisation effort will be put in

    For the vast majority of people even a 300W PSU is complete overkill because *typical* load will be much closer to 20% than 50% or even 80% and idle far below that.
    Reply
  • emn13 - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Sideline: biofuels can have a slightly higher energy density than normal conventional fuel (though I doubt it's enough to make much difference, and I bet there's tuned conventional fuel that's just as good), so you might use a sports-car with biofuel for performance rather than environmental reasons. Reply
  • Pcgeek21 - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    I agree with Daniel; I would be very interested in the performance/efficiency of low wattage power supplies (200W-300W peak output). I run relatively low power servers at home 24/7 such that the 5W delta in power draw can add up over the 4-5 year lifetime of the equipment.

    I purchased an Antec EarthWatts EA-450 (http://www.eteknix.com/antec-earthwatts-platinum-4... several months ago for my current server. I would be very interested in determining if it was a worthwhile investment or if there are any better alternatives available on the market.

    I look forward to more PSU reviews.
    Reply
  • platos - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    I also want to see low wattage small form factor PSUs like the picoPSU and compatible bricks. I'm personally moving away from large desktops for my DIY PCs. I'm even hoping for pico and nano-ITX boards and cases to become popular.

    I'm guessing large desktops will mostly be confined to companies in the near future and they are more likely to buy PSUs as part of a complete system so they wouldn't directly care about individual PSU ratings.
    Reply
  • E.Fyll - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    " My homeserver is pulling 35W from the wall right at this moment. "

    If you are not using a true RMS meter to read this figure, I am afraid that your actual power draw is way off. Especially with the PSU that you are using.
    Reply
  • Daniel Egger - Sunday, March 02, 2014 - link

    Actually that's what my APC UPS tells me which is also continuously read out so I also know the load profile over time and can even correlate with the temperature.

    Not too much of a fan reconnecting 24/7 servers too often from the mains just put different power reading hardware in between I must say.

    From what I can tell the readings from the UPS is quite accurate: I've tested it with a variety of computer and other IT equipment using switching PSUs with a true RMS meter in between.
    Reply
  • E.Fyll - Sunday, March 02, 2014 - link

    The UPS has no true RMS reading, sorry... Reply
  • emn13 - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    It's the GPU's that are costing you. I've got a standard voltage, overclocked 4770k which is currently fully loaded and it's using 97W at the wall outlet; it idles at 20W - that's including power supply overhead. With some undervolting rather than overclocking I can get that down to 15W, with 1HDD and 3SSDs, but my motherboard isn't very friendly to undervolting so I decided it wasn't worth the bother.

    A single GPU, even if it's not the top of the line, can easily consume more than the entire rest of your system. You say you have two GPU's? Well, there you go: 20W for the base system, 20W for each GPU and you're in about the right ballpark.
    Reply
  • mike55 - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    Excellent article! I would definitely be interested in seeing an article about how to choose the right PSU. There is a lot of information out there, but a lot of it seems to suggest PSUs that can provide a lot more power than what I think should be necessary, resulting in less than optimal power conversion efficiency. It would be nice to see some more objective information. Although, I suppose there is some value in getting something over sized for future proofing. Especially for a quality PSU at less than $100. Reply
  • Egg - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    IIRC the Seasonic X650 used to be this price with a modular interface. Well, I guess since the quality is just as good, and possibly even more efficient, we can hope for sales. Reply
  • tynopik - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    where's the description of the cable?

    There used to be a chart breaking down each cable and the lengths to each connector:
    http://www.anandtech.com/show/6168/rosewill-fortre...

    also, isn't a shot of the wattage chart de rigeur?
    Reply
  • extide - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    x2 these should be included Reply
  • Pcgeek21 - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    I agree with Daniel; I would be very interested in the performance/efficiency of low wattage power supplies (200W-300W peak output). I run relatively low power servers at home 24/7 such that the 5W delta in power draw can add up over the 4-5 year lifetime of the equipment.

    I purchased an Antec EarthWatts EA-450 (http://www.eteknix.com/antec-earthwatts-platinum-4... several months ago for my current server. I would be very interested in determining if it was a worthwhile investment or if there are any better alternatives available on the market.

    I look forward to more PSU reviews.
    Reply
  • E.Fyll - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    That will happen too. Companies (and consumers) generally favor large PSUs at the moment and there are very few high performance, low wattage models. I certainly do not plan on testing high output units alone though, neither focusing on just a single "class" of products. Patience, I can only do one at the time. In time, there will be a good variety of reviews, of every output/range/class. Reply
  • pandemonium - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    Nice read. I went for the big brother instead about a month ago when my Corsair TX650 decided enough was enough: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8... Reply
  • Talcite - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Glad to see PSU reviews have returned! Reply
  • CknSalad - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    There's a 360 watt version of this Seasonic brand line. Honestly anything 660/7870 and less just get a quality 360-400 watt psu so your efficiency is also decent under non-gaming/non-intensive loads. 550 watt for a high end single-gpu system (Titan/780 TI/290/290x). GPUs in between those mentioned above a quality 450w psu is good enough. Reply
  • FriendlyUser - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    I applaud the newer testing methodology for cases and PSUs. Great job.
    I am a fan of Seasonic PSUs and have been buying them for a few years. Since I started using Seasonic PSUs I have observed a very low component failure rate for my HD, GPUs etc. Maybe because of very low ripple or because of excellent voltage regulation? Anyway, worth investing in a high-end PSU.
    Reply
  • E.Fyll - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Indeed. Most people do not realize that but power quality (ripple/noise suppression mostly) is, in my opinion, by far the most important aspect of a PSU. It hardly affects the performance of the PSU itself but it has a dramatic impact on the longevity and reliability of your system's components.

    Do not be fooled however, low ripple does not mean low noise; you can easily have a low ripple signal with horrible levels of noise in it. We can only present ripple readings at the moment. We will get a super-fast oscilloscope that can filter noise out of a ripple signal soon; until then try not to confuse these two figures please.
    Reply
  • FriendlyUser - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Thanks for the clarification. I really want to see noise figures for PSUs. I would also be curious to see if PSU quality affects analog sound output quality in a measurable way. That would be a cool comparison to make in the future, if you have access to the measuring instruments. Reply
  • tynopik - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Performance when the current is normal and all the components are behaving nicely is boring.

    We want real torture tests!

    - What happens to the output in either severe brownout or overvoltage conditions? What happens when the input is unstable and bounces all over the place? Hook that sucker up to a variac and play with the knob like you're a DJ.

    - Transient analysis- aka does the output remain in spec when 10 hard drives spin up at once

    - Over-current protection- What happens if a component shorts? What if it just draws a lot more power than it should? Can you melt a cable? Can you blow a fuse? Can you hurt other components on other cables?
    Reply
  • FriendlyUser - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    Torture tests are only meaningful, in my opinion, if they correspond to possible usage scenarios. Although interesting, the performance of a PSU in situations that will almost never arise should not influence a buying decision. Reply
  • E.Fyll - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    And I want a high output, high frequency, programmable AC power source. Do you happen to have 20.000 USD to spare? ;)

    The VARIAC (oh, I am using one) is entirely useless for the tests that you mentioned. Simply "rotating the knob" is entirely wrong. I will be adding such tests in the future, when I have better equipment available.

    As for most of the last tests that you mentioned, these cannot be tested. They are assumptions and performing any one of such "tests" will damage the components of a PSU indefinitely, rendering it useless. For example, if I short the rectifier bridge, it will permanently damage it and probably other components of the PSU as well. Unless you can supply me with 100 units of each model, I cannot test what would happen if every given component would fail.

    Oh, and if the distibution grid around your area shifts like "a DJ is rotating the knob", which is not really possible (infinite bus theory), you need to complain to the local authorities, not to the manufacturer of an otherwise proper product. The designer of a PSU is not really to blame if you decide to power it with a voltage signal generated by a pathetic, home-made contraption. Your grid is the problem, start by fixing that.
    Reply
  • tynopik - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    > if I short the rectifier bridge

    I mean on the component side. Cables can and do short and it should NOT cause permanent harm to the PSU (or to other components on other cables). If it does, the PSU is poorly designed.

    > if the distibution grid around your area shifts like "a DJ is rotating the knob", which is not really possible (infinite bus theory)

    The request is based off an incident that actually did happen to me. The power dipped 3 times in quick succession and the power supply blew and took out everything connected to it. Granted this was before I knew better and it was a crappy unit running right at its limit, but PSUs do have to deal with power 'variances' in the real world.
    Reply
  • E.Fyll - Sunday, March 02, 2014 - link

    Shorting a component = OCP protection. I always perform such tests before proceeding to testing the unit. I don't it that to fail catastrophically with $12.000 connected to it...

    I do understand that this might have had happened to you. It most likely was due to the catastrophic failure of a distribution grid's component. Still, that is not a fault of the PSU, it is an issue with your energy supplier. Your energy supplier is under contract to provide you with electricity of specific quality. If you have such severe problems with your distribution grid, you do not need a better PSU, you need a lawsuit.
    Reply
  • HangFire - Monday, March 03, 2014 - link

    I'm glad to hear you test OCP. Will you be testing it on all 3 voltage rails?

    As for voltage variances, they are not typically due to catastrophic failures. Quite mundane failures such as tree and animal shorts happen often, and there is a high voltage protocol to burn them off and resume normal power that sounds just like the poster's experience.

    Power in proximity to manufacturing areas can show the effects of large electric motor startup and shutdown. Grids switching in and out contingent power sources can introduce phase issues, and so on.

    Blowing all of these off as unusual or the result of large failure is not realistic.
    Reply
  • HangFire - Monday, March 03, 2014 - link

    Here is a good overview: http://apcdistributors.com/white-papers/Power/WP-1... Reply
  • E.Fyll - Tuesday, March 04, 2014 - link

    It is entirely realistic, simply because a) they are unusual and b) are not a problem of the PSU itself but a problem caused by your grid.

    Large motors and appliances that could cause a voltage drop are not being fed by the consumer distribution grid. Anything above a medium industry is being powered by polyphase distribution. So you being in the same grid as a massive motor, no, it is not going to happen. You are connected on a distribution bus, which is nearly infinite (hence the term "infinite bus") and will no bulge even when huge generators start. If there is an appliance capable of causing a voltage surge or drop connected into the residential grid near you, that is a problem.

    Trees and animals are a) not mundane failures and b) definitely not just being "burned off and resume". If an animal shorts two distribution phases and no safety kicks in, the current inbalance will easily destroy a large transformer in milliseconds.

    The faults that are being described in APC's white paper certainly are correct and possible. Well, to an extend; after all, it is a paper meant to advertise how good having a UPS is, not really a scientific document. This does not mean that they are frequent, nor that they can be replicated by "rotating the knob". See these ups and downs the waveform does in their examples? Your household grid is doing 50 or 60 of them, depending on where you live, *per second*. The faults rarely have a length of more than a few milliseconds. Rotating a knob 100.000 times per second is definitely not possible, specialized equipment is required to replicate any such test.
    Reply
  • HangFire - Friday, March 07, 2014 - link

    I'm not the one suggesting the knob methodology.

    I would have agreed with you when I lived in the suburbs. Since moving to a rural area, I can assure you that brownouts, tree related outages and crossed power lines are quite common here. Besides trees the big threat here is drivers hitting utility poles. Very common this time of year, the combination of ice and hill country is quite hazardous, and many of the poles here carry two sets of voltages. In one event just a few years ago, every lightbulb in my house lit up very bright. I lost 5 lightbulbs and 2 small appliances.
    Reply
  • HangFire - Friday, March 07, 2014 - link

    I guess MY point is that Active PFC power supplies are supposed to take a range of voltages; but I don't see anyone testing that. I test it every few months, when I get out the 100 foot extension cord and use a PC with 5.1 speaker system for party tunes. (My guests are not picky I guess). I use quality hardware, usually a Seasonic so I'm OK but I wonder what the limits are for the cheaper stuff. Reply
  • tynopik - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    I can see where 'component side' could be confusing. I mean 'external to the power supply'. No of course I don't expect you to go digging inside a unit and shorting things out. Reply
  • tynopik - Saturday, March 01, 2014 - link

    > the performance of a PSU in situations that will almost never arise should not influence a buying decision.

    it depends on what you mean by 'almost never' and what the consequences of failure in those cases are.

    New Orleans is 'almost never' hit by a hurricane. Does that mean they shouldn't worry it?

    Saving a few dollars a year by being more efficient in the usual case is great, but if it blows your system during a random power blip, was it worth it?
    Reply
  • CeceliaAFolger - Sunday, March 02, 2014 - link

    this is a goor site to earn $145 per Month .......... Reply
  • tynopik - Monday, March 03, 2014 - link

    > Shorting a component = OCP protection. I always perform such tests before proceeding to testing the unit.

    good to know, thanks

    > Still, that is not a fault of the PSU, it is an issue with your energy supplier.

    Disagree. No matter what the input is to a power supply, there are only 2 acceptable outputs: in-spec power or nothing.

    It should NEVER put out-of-spec power on the rails, period.
    Reply
  • RAYBOYD44 - Monday, March 03, 2014 - link

    My Uncle Jordan recently got Lexus GX 460 SUV from only workin on a pc at home... Reply
  • GrahamATrotmann - Monday, March 03, 2014 - link

    n a PSU with a fan. Waste of money when my main reason for getting it was negated. I heard the new generations of Seasonic are almost always silent, but I'm happy with the SilentNight, too. http://num.to/4257*9142*5469 Reply
  • Ram21 - Monday, March 03, 2014 - link

    So, maybe I am blind, but how long are the cables? In previous power supply reviews, there were info graphics that had the lengths each type of cable. Great review, and looking forward to seeing more reviews with this level of detail. Reply
  • HangFire - Tuesday, March 04, 2014 - link

    I agree! While mundane, cable lengths and connector types and counts are an essential part of any power supply review. Anyone buying a power supply is doing so for a reason, often because their current P/S is short on power, connectors, or cable lengths to accomodate a recent upgrade. Reply
  • tynopik - Tuesday, March 04, 2014 - link

    > It is entirely realistic, simply because a) they are unusual and b) are not a problem of the PSU itself but a problem caused by your grid.

    Saying problems with the grid aren't caused by the PSU is
    a) true
    b) irrelevant

    What matters is that power problems do happen in the real world and thus the PSU has to deal with it

    what is 'unusual'?

    Once every five years is unusual, but that doesn't mean having your computer blow every five years is acceptable

    It IS a problem of the PSU because the PSU has to be able to handle 'unusual' events and at all costs protect the components connected to it.

    Any PSU that puts out enough voltage to fry the attached components is a FAILURE, no matter what the input is or how unusual it is.
    Reply
  • Popskalius - Thursday, March 06, 2014 - link

    other than modularity, is there a difference with the SeaSonic SSR-650RM 650W. You guys think $15 more is worth being modular? Reply

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