FSP this week announced its new series of redundant PSUs called the 'Twins'. The new power supplies are compatible with standard ATX and PS2 tower chassis, but provide redundancy capabilities and can thus enable building non-stop servers using 'relatively affordable' components.

The manufacturer positions the FSP Twins PSUs for home and SMB mail, web and intranet servers when building in a standard ATX or PS2 tower chassis. Like other redundant power supply units, the FSP Twins houses two hot-swappable PSUs and if one fails, another immediately kicks in, ensuring that the system never stops due to power supply failure. Both PSUs can be replaced without shutting down the machine, similar to typical datacenter-class mission critical servers. The PSU modules are proprietary, and each has its own 40-mm high-pressure server-grade fan, implying they have the potential to be pretty noisy. The FSP Twins series come with special firmware and sensors that monitor over-current, short-circuit, over-voltage, or fan failure, and the special LED indicators can alarm users of any problems.

Initially, FSP will offer two Twins models with 500W and 700W PSUs. The Twins will have EPS12V power connectors (one 24-pin and two 4+4-pin connectors) and will thus be able to handle dual-socket (or even multi-socket) motherboards up to the power capacity. The 500W version will feature two PCIe 6+2-pin power connectors, six SATA power connectors, two Molex plugs, one connector for floppy drives and one 8-pin USB connector to interface with monitoring software. FSP notes that all cables supplied with the Twins are flat in a bid to enable easier cable management in space-constrained chassis. The specifications of the 700W unit have not been announced as of yet.

Brief Specifications of FSP's Twins PSU
Connectors 500 W
24-Pin 1
4+4-Pin 2
6+2-Pin PCIe 2
Molex 2
Floppy 1
USB 8-Pin 1

The FSP’s Twins series is not the first attempt to wed ATX/EPS12V PSU form-factor with redundancy. However, some of the predecessors of Twins did not have enough wattage for modern servers, poor serviceability, or became EOL quite quickly for replacement components. Moreover, keep in mind that an ATX chassis is not particularly designed for a server, despite the homebrew market, which is why the market for such PSUs is relatively small.

The FSP Twins 500W will cost $399, which comes across as a reasonable price for a redundant PSU module that is essentially two 500W units. The price of a 700W version is being determined, as is the individual units themselves. Both will come with a five-year limited warranty later this year. FSP will demonstrate its Twins series at the Computex Taipei 2016 trade show next week.

Source: FSP



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  • jjj - Friday, May 27, 2016 - link

    In consumer it would be nicer if they had a UPS module, can't remember anyone integrating a UPS in a PSU. Reply
  • Demon-Xanth - Friday, May 27, 2016 - link

    I worked with a ramtech PSU that had an external to the PSU internal to the system battery so the system could be unplugged, moved to a different room, and plugged back in without waiting for shut down and boot times. Reply
  • ZPrime - Friday, May 27, 2016 - link

    When you have two PSUs like this, all you need is a UPS on a cart and you can do the same thing. Unplug one from mains/line voltage and plug into the UPS, then unplug the other PSU and move the machine around. With a large enough UPS you can move really far this way. With a smaller UPS, you may have to make intermittent stops down the hallway / across the server room to recharge... :D

    UPS-walking is fun!
  • Alexvrb - Friday, May 27, 2016 - link

    Recharge? Psshh, you just grab another fully-charged UPS and plug it into the other PSU. Then you disconnect the dying one, plug that in to charge, and continue on your merry way. With enough UPS units, you can UPS-walk a server around all day. Reply
  • redfirebird15 - Saturday, May 28, 2016 - link

    This comment made my day! I totally pictured an administrator with a cart for the server and a cart full of UPS's like waiting in an elevator. Reply
  • Alexvrb - Sunday, May 29, 2016 - link

    :-) Just make sure you plug in a fresh one before you take a break. Imagine the cart waiting outside the bathroom with a "DO NOT TOUCH" sign on it. Reply
  • close - Monday, May 30, 2016 - link

    While this image in people's minds is always funny (the admin with a cart), actually doing it is less so. :D I remember having to do this once many years ago relocating some servers between two buildings, across a parking lot. We were 5 people doing it and a crowd gathered in the parking lot, in total silence so they could hear the servers whir while being moved. At that time for some people it must have been some kind of magic. Reply
  • Shadow7037932 - Friday, May 27, 2016 - link

    This is interesting. But quite a lot more expensive than I would have expected. I would have bought the 500W for around $250 as it would make sense for a NAS setup. Reply
  • JeffFlanagan - Friday, May 27, 2016 - link

    If this product is going to stick around, this can be nice for workstations too. I have no problem replacing a whole PSU, but there are a lot more people who can handle sliding out and replacing a PSU module without even opening the case. Even a single-PSU version would be nice. When a PC fails to start, the first step would be to take 5 seconds and swap in a spare PSU. Reply
  • Bob Todd - Friday, May 27, 2016 - link

    At least in my experience, the tiny fans in server grade hardware aren't something you want to be sitting near for an extended period of time. This thing will likely be *loud* compared to what most people find acceptable to be in the same room with. Reply

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