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Best energy efficient, modular PSU?

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February 1, 2008 2:24:34 AM

Hey everyone,

I'm looking for opinions on PSUs as I'm having some issues finding everything I'm searching for. This is for a build I'm planning to start once the Q9450 quads come out.

Here's the specs I'm hoping for:

600-750w
enough juice in the 12V rails to run an 8800gt (or possibly 2 future ATI cards in crossfire if enough power available)
energy efficiency rating of 80plus (or something closely approaching that)
modular cables
Tier 2 or above

I've searched around but all the PSUs I've found lack one or more of these specs. Any suggestions guys?
Thanks.
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February 1, 2008 3:18:12 AM

The efficiency rating isn't going to help your power bill. Also the wattage isn't not normally an issue it's the amp on the 12v rail. You can cheat quite a bit on those cards based on the manufactures required specs something like 26amps is what they say. Very few PSU's under 800W support that.
a c 83 ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 3:41:42 AM

bydesign said:
The efficiency rating isn't going to help your power bill. Also the wattage isn't not normally an issue it's the amp on the 12v rail. You can cheat quite a bit on those cards based on the manufactures required specs something like 26amps is what they say. Very few PSU's under 800W support that.

50 amps @ 12 volts on that psu(this is based on the fact that there is not allot of 3.3 and 5 on modern systems....so even with loaded 5 and 3.3 there would still be 40 or so)...no problems there...

The card take nowhere near 26 amps on its own. 2 8800GT's in SLI take 15 amps....

26 @ 12 amps is only 312watts

Almost all new PSU's(from good brands) are 12 volt heavy

Hell even my old Smartpower 450 could do 32 amps as long as the 3.3 and 5 lines are not loaded too much...

Ohh and efficiency WILL help you power bill....

400 watts DC load on a 60% efficient PSU takes 560 watts from the wall
400 watts DC load on a 83% efficient PSU takes 468 watts from the wall

I would call that a saving @ 2.2 KW/H per 24 hours of on time something...
a b ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 3:57:49 AM

Plus, the 92 watts you save would otherwise be turned into heat, increasing the noise and making the fans and the electronic parts die sooner. Yeah, PSU efficiency does matter.
February 1, 2008 4:03:08 AM

bydesign said:
The efficiency rating isn't going to help your power bill.


It won't? I replaced two power supplies with energy efficient ones and it really made a difference on my electric bill. A more efficient PSU draws less power from the wall correct?

I'm very happy with my 650W modular TT Toughpower PSU, however the previously mentioned Corsair and Seasonic are at least as good, probably better. I would be hesitant to get any of these power supplies however because they don't have an 8 pin PCI-E power cable.

Correction: the Seasonic does have an 8 pin PCI-E power connector
a c 83 ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 4:04:43 AM

Quote:
Plus, the 92 watts you save would otherwise be turned into heat, increasing the noise and making the fans and the electronic parts die sooner. Yeah, PSU efficiency does matter.

that said. my old psu in my music/serverish machine used to pump out heat....not with an 80+ the fan spins extremely slow and it puts out much cooler air....

Also my Q6600, 8800GTX +6 hard drives takes less power then then my e6600 + X1900 with 2 drives...why? my old psu was not efficient.

But this is a machine that only takes 125 watts from the wall anyway...I don't miss the hot air
a b ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 6:42:11 AM

Just put in my order for a Corsair HX yesterday.
a b ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 12:40:06 PM

pshrk said:
It won't? I replaced two power supplies with energy efficient ones and it really made a difference on my electric bill. A more efficient PSU draws less power from the wall correct?

I'm very happy with my 650W modular TT Toughpower PSU, however the previously mentioned Corsair and Seasonic are at least as good, probably better. I would be hesitant to get any of these power supplies however because they don't have an 8 pin PCI-E power cable.

Correction: the Seasonic does have an 8 pin PCI-E power connector


BFG sells an adapter from 6-pin to 8-pin for $5, if anybody needs it. :) 
February 1, 2008 2:05:04 PM

Didn't OCZ buy out PC Power & Cooling? Sorry if I'm mistaken, but I believe they did get bought out by someone... so that could be the reason for the name change. I believe they're the same PSU though. Correct me if I'm wrong.

*edit*

Quote:
BFG sells an adapter from 6-pin to 8-pin for $5, if anybody needs it. :) 
Good to know. Btw, What exactly is the purpose of the 8-pin if you can just convert it from a 6-pin and still have it work? O.o I would understand the 8-pin if it required 8 wires, 1 for each pin, but since it works w/ just 6 wires... why was the change needed?
a b ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 2:08:46 PM

@Avenger_K:
You do know that OCZ bought PC Power & Cooling some time ago, right? Some retailers call that PSU OCZ now, but some stick with the old name still. :pt1cable: 

There are two types of Silencer 750W as far as I know. One is S75QB and the other is S75CF. The S75QB is black, is the one at www.buy.com, and it has 6-pin PCI-E connectors. The other one is red and it has 6/8-pin connectors (so it's better for 3870X2 for example). You can see them both here:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&DEPA=0&Description=Silencer+750&x=0&y=0

Both are SLI-ready and Crossfire-ready, don't worry about that. Any 750W PSU should be able to handle two video cards.
a b ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 2:11:21 PM

rgeist554 said:
Btw, What exactly is the purpose of the 8-pin if you can just convert it from a 6-pin and still have it work? O.o I would understand the 8-pin if it required 8 wires, 1 for each pin, but since it works w/ just 6 wires... why was the change needed?


Beats me. Another example of weird thinking from ATI???

February 1, 2008 2:46:23 PM

Antec Neo HE 500/650W (not 80Plus certified, but close, and cheap)
Seasonic M12 500/600/700W
Corsair 520/620HX
Silverstone DA650/DA700/ST75F
Enermax Liberty 400/500/620W
Enermax Infiniti 650/720W
February 1, 2008 2:57:16 PM

rgeist554 said:
Didn't OCZ buy out PC Power & Cooling? Sorry if I'm mistaken, but I believe they did get bought out by someone... so that could be the reason for the name change. I believe they're the same PSU though. Correct me if I'm wrong.



aevm said:
@Avenger_K:
You do know that OCZ bought PC Power & Cooling some time ago, right? Some retailers call that PSU OCZ now, but some stick with the old name still. :pt1cable: 


No, I did not realize that. My mistake :ouch:  :pfff:  :D 

In that case that is a very good deal :pt1cable: , definitely worth considering.
a b ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 2:59:57 PM

No worries. I just wish they'd make up their mind if they're OCZ or PC P&C. This whole PSU business is complicated enough already, even without tricks like that :) 
February 1, 2008 3:17:03 PM

Quote:
No worries. I just wish they'd make up their mind if they're OCZ or PC P&C. This whole PSU business is complicated enough already, even without tricks like that :) 
Oh yeah. >_>
February 1, 2008 3:24:29 PM

aevm said:
No worries. I just wish they'd make up their mind if they're OCZ or PC P&C. This whole PSU business is complicated enough already, even without tricks like that :) 

^Agree 100%
a c 83 ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 3:55:41 PM

For the time OCZ psus are still OCZ(AKA FSP for the gameXtreme,stealthXtreme....ect) and PC power and cooling are still there own(They are still making there own and getting some made elsewhere)....

as far as i know
February 1, 2008 4:05:25 PM

bydesign said:
The efficiency rating isn't going to help your power bill.

:o  Perhaps you should refrain from giving PSU advice until you do some further research.
February 1, 2008 4:30:20 PM

aevm said:
Beats me. Another example of weird thinking from ATI???


The two extra pins support extra grounds to enable the overclocking function, if you aren't overclocking the card they aren't required.
a b ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 6:06:32 PM

Well, yeah, I knew that. But the question remains, why do they need extra grounds? Isn't one enough?

Oh well, even if somebody at AMD tried to explain it, I'm not qualified to understand the explanation. I took physics and electronics courses in university but they're long forgotten by now. :( 

a c 83 ) Power supply
February 1, 2008 8:02:24 PM

Quote:
Antec is overrated

Then so is Seasonic since they make almost ALL of antecs current PSU line....
February 1, 2008 8:03:33 PM

Quote:
Best Energy Efficient - SeaSonic S12 Energy Plus SS-650HT 88% Efficient,Quiet, No modular http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Best Maximum Performance - PC&Power Cooling Turbo-Cool 860 Efficient 84%,Ultra-Tight Voltage Regulation (+VDC 1.5%), No modular http://www.pcpower.com/power-supply/turbo-cool-860.html

Best Performance & Silent - PC&Power Cooling Silencer 750 Efficient 83%,Quiet,No modular http://www.pcpower.com/power-supply/silencer-750-quad-c...

If your are build a HTPC w/ HDTV tuner or Dual/Quad w/ one video and no over-clocking. I would choose SeaSonic SS-650HT.

If your are building a (Super Hot Gamer PC) Dual/Quad w/ Dual/Quad video and over-clock. My first chose is PC&Power Cooling Turbo-Cool 860 and my second chose is PC&Power Cooling Silencer 750.

Stay away from Cheap PSU it make your system run hotter and Antec is overrated.

You do realize Seasonic is the OEM for the Antec Earthwatts, NeoHE and TruePower Trio series. If anything, they're underrated because they are quality and much cheaper than other PSUs with equivalent power ratings.

Edit: Nuke, you beat me to it.

Also, Corsair PSUs are also considered among the highest quality and they're made by Seasonic and Channel Well (who make Antec's other PSUs not listed above - SmartPower, TruePower and NeoPower).
February 1, 2008 9:40:00 PM

pshrk said:
It won't? I replaced two power supplies with energy efficient ones and it really made a difference on my electric bill. A more efficient PSU draws less power from the wall correct?

I'm very happy with my 650W modular TT Toughpower PSU, however the previously mentioned Corsair and Seasonic are at least as good, probably better. I would be hesitant to get any of these power supplies however because they don't have an 8 pin PCI-E power cable.

Correction: the Seasonic does have an 8 pin PCI-E power connector


Maybe but maybe not that rate comes frequently comes from 80% load. So sure if you are actually at 80% load it's relevant otherwise is probably not. Otherwise you need to know the load some are fairly consistent most are not and low load frequently is far less efficient. As for your huge difference I don't see that happening as your two PC's most likely make a small percentage of the total power used in your home and you're talking about a crappy PSU of 65% vs 85% not much difference. So sure it might over a year save some coin maybe around $.12 a day per PC.

As for the 8800 512 manufactures spec's they are "Power Supply Requirements 400 Watt Power Supply (with 22A on the +12V Rail)" It also uses a 6 pin power connector.

Lastly Seasonic aren't bad and I've yet to have a Antec last it's warranty period. I would go with an Enermax Liberty or Thermaltake Toughpower greater than 600W for a solid modular PSU

a c 83 ) Power supply
February 2, 2008 2:27:19 AM

To be 80+ the psu has to be 80%(or better) efficient at 20% load 50% load and 100% load.....so that does cover most. All i know is my 80+ did save me a number of watts on higher end systems...

I have never had a PSU die EVER(even a cheap one that ran my XP 1800+ 9800 pro system way back when.....not that i would ever use it again....)....lucky?
February 2, 2008 12:37:27 PM

Yeah, I have a Rosewill [gasp] 350 running my HTPC (A XP 2400+, 1GB PC133, GF 5200). Never given me any troubles, although during its lifespan has seemed to push out slightly hotter air. It was a cheap replacement for an older computer whose PSU became quite noisy, and I'm pleased and not too nervous. If it was going to die (or kill) it would have done it already.
a b ) Power supply
February 2, 2008 7:34:57 PM

bydesign said:
Maybe but maybe not that rate comes frequently comes from 80% load. So sure if you are actually at 80% load it's relevant otherwise is probably not.


Any PSU that has the "80 PLUS" or "80+" certification has been tested to be at least 80% efficient at 20%, 50% and 100% load.


http://www.80plus.org/80what.htm


Quote:
What is the 80 PLUS specification?

The 80 PLUS performance specification requires power supplies in computers and servers to be 80% or greater energy efficient at 20%, 50% and 100% of rated load with a true power factor of 0.9 or greater. This makes an 80 PLUS certified power supply substantially more efficient than typical power supplies and creates a unique market differentiation opportunity for power supply and computer manufacturers


!