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Power supply advice needed...

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  • New Build
  • Cooler Master
  • Power Supplies
  • Cases
  • Systems
  • Product
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May 11, 2008 8:16:39 PM

I posted this under the power supply/case forum, but thought that I would repost it here for those of you that may not frequent that forum as I would like your input as well.

Going to be building a pc soon. either q6600 or e8400 OC'ed. 8800GTS card.

Right now I have this power supply:
CORSAIR CMPSU-550VX 550W
http://www.newegg.com/product/product.aspx?item=N82E168...

which is is $85 after MIR + another $10 for shipping = $95


but I was looking and noticed this one:
COOLER MASTER Real Power Pro RS-650-ACAA-A1 650W
http://www.newegg.com/product/product.aspx?item=N82E168...

which is is $100 after MIR with free shipping.


So, for like $5 more can go from the 550W to the 650W power supply. I probably don't need more than the 550W, but for just $5 more wondering if I should just go ahead and get the 650W.

More about : power supply advice needed

May 11, 2008 8:36:11 PM

I think you can get the Corsair for ~$70 from
http://www.buy.com/prod/Corsair-VX-550W-Power-Supply/q/...

Cooler Master makes great cases ... buy their PSUs don't share that reputation. 550W is good for a one graphics card system.
Unless you plan on doing SLI but 650W might be a bit slim for that too.
May 11, 2008 8:40:16 PM

Judging by specs, the Cooler Master psu is stronger. 12v rail ratings at 3x19amps vs 1x41 amps, plus higher 12v and overall wattage.

Here's what I use, for comparasion:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
850 watts, 12v rails at 4x20amps.

Be sure to read the newegg buyer feedback reviews. Ignore the good reviews, just read the ones rated at 1 or 2. You want to know if it's just noobs whinning or if there's actually something wrong with it.

Related resources
May 11, 2008 8:57:55 PM

Thanks, guys.

Think I will prob go with the $70 550W from buy.com. free shipping too. I might would look at the 650 harder if I was going to SLI or something because of the multiple rails. But, I don't plan to SLI.
May 11, 2008 9:54:23 PM

^...For dual GPU SLI 550W is quite sufficient...so don't worry, 550VX is a great buy.
May 11, 2008 10:28:28 PM

dagger said:
Judging by specs, the Cooler Master psu is stronger. 12v rail ratings at 3x19amps vs 1x41 amps, plus higher 12v and overall wattage.
The published specs don't tell you the quality of the components or design.

Cooler Master PSUs are junk. Apparently the 1000W is better, but IMO it is a good idea to steer clear of all Cooler Master PSUs.
May 11, 2008 10:37:49 PM

mihirkula said:
^...For dual GPU SLI 550W is quite sufficient...so don't worry, 550VX is a great buy.
I'd rather not have 2x 8800GTS( 2 x 150W max) and an OCed quadcore(120W+) on a 550W PSU. Maybe I'm silly but it'd be running close to the limit and that's a bad idea even for a high quality unit like the Corsair. Just my thoughts.
a b ) Power supply
May 11, 2008 10:42:39 PM

dagger said:
Judging by specs, the Cooler Master psu is stronger. 12v rail ratings at 3x19amps vs 1x41 amps, plus higher 12v and overall wattage.

Here's what I use, for comparasion:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
850 watts, 12v rails at 4x20amps.

Be sure to read the newegg buyer feedback reviews. Ignore the good reviews, just read the ones rated at 1 or 2. You want to know if it's just noobs whinning or if there's actually something wrong with it.

Dagger, CoolerMaster PSUs are considered Tire 4/5 (except the higher end ones ie 700W which are ~Tire 3).

See:
http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=10...

Remember Watts do not equal quality.
a b ) Power supply
May 11, 2008 10:43:05 PM

Zorg said:
The published specs don't tell you the quality of the components or design.

Cooler Master PSUs are junk. Apparently the 1000W is better, but IMO it is a good idea to steer clear of all Cooler Master PSUs.

Agreed!
May 11, 2008 10:56:24 PM

Shadow703793 said:
Dagger, CoolerMaster PSUs are considered Tire 4/5 (except the higher end ones ie 700W which are ~Tire 3).

See:
http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=10...

Remember Watts do not equal quality.

Lol, nice chart. It's a wonder manufacturers didn't sue those guys for defamation, considering how they list brands like that. :sol: 

But yeah, I have no idea what brand is good or not. Listen to people who do.

Looking at that, mine is on low tier 4, but all rails output is rock solid on stress. Plus, it haven't got a single bad buyer review on Newegg, only 4 and 5s on a scale of 1-5. I wanted to buy brand name first, but saw the price, and then the good reviews, and considering newegg's return policy, decided to go for the bargain instead.

How scientific is that chart? How big a cross sample for each model of each brand do they test? It should be at least 500+ per model to be statistically significant.

Btw, just noticed something. On the psu, it says "Zumax" with "epower" only in the fine print. Maybe they saw the chart and tried to ditch the bum rep? :na: 
May 11, 2008 11:29:13 PM

If Ultra's guys saw that chart they'd sue alright...
They sue everybody. Then they take 350W hardware, put a 600W sticker on it and sell it for $100+.
You can't go wrong with that chart IMO. An Enermax Galaxy dies from time to time. But 10 minutes before it dies it still offers 99.9% accurate voltages.
And it doesn't take a $350 motherboard with it when it goes. :D 
May 11, 2008 11:32:37 PM

dagger said:
But yeah, I have no idea what brand is good or not. Listen to people who do.
:pfff: 
dagger said:
Looking at that, mine is on low tier 4, but all rails output is rock solid on stress. Plus, it haven't got a single bad buyer review on Newegg, only 4 and 5s on a scale of 1-5. I wanted to buy brand name first, but saw the price, and then the good reviews, and considering newegg's return policy, decided to go for the bargain instead.
For the most part the brands are listed in alphabetical order within each tier. The order within the tier has no significance. I noticed that you didn't list the Brand of PSU in your sig, are you embarrassed? Maybe you should be looking at a new PSU as well. I guess that's like the blind leading the blind.
dagger said:
How scientific is that chart? How big a cross sample for each model of each brand do they test? It should be at least 500+ per model to be statistically significant.
Don't you think that expecting testing on 500+ PSUs of each type is ludicrous. They test and or dissect the PSUs to determine what components e.g., capacitors etc. are used and the design of the PSU itself. I'm sure they get their data elsewhere as well. The list should be used as a guide. If your PSU is a tier 4 or 5 it is probably junk.
May 11, 2008 11:52:47 PM

Actually, the current psu is a replacement for this one, which keeps crashing my new rig.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
After monitoring output, it's clear. Output voltage fluctuates far too much. No wonder. I purchased this after some guy online recommended this exact model. Ignored some of the... rather humbling reviews it got on newegg because I thought they were just noobs whinning. After getting burned on that, I returned it, got the first bargain listed, and was pleasantly surprised with the rock stable output even on high stress.

Looking at the chart, it's on tier 2. :sarcastic: 

Not saying it's bad. Surely I just got a bad apple. You really should read the user reviews though. Hey, at least the bad apple I got didn't explode like that poor sob who wrote one of the reviews. :p 
May 12, 2008 12:31:30 AM

Never had the chance to handle a Liberty(I guess I should be happy about that). INFINITIs are quite good
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Installed two with no issues. I had a Galaxy 850W die on me about one hour into my friend's build (15 minutes after installing Windows (we checked the voltages a few minutes before that and they didn't move at all). 2 reboots later it just dies. No smoke. No fire. Nothing. The replacement unit still works 1 year later and powers a nice little WS with 8HDDs.
May 12, 2008 1:10:51 AM

Just because the PSU is well respected doesn't mean there will be zero failures. Dagger, just out of curiosity what is the model of your PSU?

It appears that Newegg is having a hell of a sale on PSUs. 750TX, Silencer 750 and the Enermax.
May 12, 2008 1:27:58 AM

Zorg said:
Just because the PSU is well respected doesn't mean there will be zero failures. Dagger, just out of curiosity what is the model of your PSU?

It appears that Newegg is having a hell of a sale on PSUs. 750TX, Silencer 750 and the Enermax.

I built the rig only one month ago. Both models are linked in eariler posts. And yeah, anything can be defective. It's a matter of luck. :p 
May 12, 2008 1:51:22 AM

^dagger's rig plumbing : http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I don't know if it's the pictures on newegg but it looks like it's been put together with caveman tools. Look at the gaps in the metal casing!

Those cables look like you could kill someone with them. The rear voltage switch is so 1995 ;) ... what's it for ?
May 12, 2008 2:06:13 AM

Andrius said:
^dagger's rig plumbing : http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I don't know if it's the pictures on newegg but it looks like it's been put together with caveman tools. Look at the gaps in the metal casing!

Those cables look like you could kill someone with them. The rear voltage switch is so 1995 ;)  ... what's it for ?

That gap is the width of the cross bars that held the fan guard in place. It can't be helped. That voltage switch is so it can be used in Europe... and Asia... and everywhere else other than US. :p 
May 12, 2008 2:42:59 AM

That's a Topower unit. I couldn't find any reviews on it. I noticed what I assume is yours that said
Quote:
...recommended models from what they considered "good" brands, which cost around $200 for a 500 watt model with around 40amps total on 12v rails. review on Newegg that stated
That doesn't make sense because the Silencer 610 has been only $119 for at least a few months.

Since you are not loading the ePower very heavily, maybe it will work out good for you, I hope so.
May 12, 2008 4:04:53 AM

dagger said:
That voltage switch is so it can be used in Europe... and Asia... and everywhere else other than US. :p 
I think what he meant is that you don't see that anymore. I thought that switch wasn't used on any of the newer active PFC PSUs. The odd thing is that the ePower claims to have active PFC and also has the switch. Go figure.
May 12, 2008 9:50:27 AM

With Active PFC I wouldn't expect to see the input voltage selector yes.

If you check the label you'll see it's not a 110V/230V switch.
It says something like 1.3 ATX / 2.x ATX (from newegg images).

It's a good thing PSU looks don't really matter. The age of bling is at hand.
May 12, 2008 5:13:18 PM

I pulled it up on the ePower website it does have auto voltage input.
Quote:
Auto switching circuitry provides universal AC input 110-240VAC
The numbers on the switch correspond to ATX standard revisions. I couldn't find anything on the site and no manual.

Epower Technology - Model: ZU-850W

I would like to see a full review on this PSU with load testing. Maybe one day.
May 12, 2008 7:39:19 PM

Not likely. I doubt the manufacturer wants the bad press (so they don't send out press samples).
Since it doesn't cost all that much maybe someone will sacrifice one to the gods of Chroma. :heink: 

Why would a PSU need to switch between ATX 1.3 and 2.x? Isn't 2.x backwards compatible by default?
Never really bothered to check the differeces between the two so I'm just guessing.
May 13, 2008 12:07:16 AM

Lol, so many things I haven't noticed. A google search yielded some results. Apparently, they call it a 12v rail Turbo switch, and it's used to split/combine 12v rails.

Still, what's the net effect of this? I couldn't find any information on exactly how this matters. Can anyone shed some light on this? :p 
May 13, 2008 12:49:05 AM

From what I know about rail design, splitting the load over several rails can reduce the strain on components (they can be less powerful so cheaper) in each rail. It also has benefits for OCP (less current through "one" wire).
The down side is you can only put "smaller"(say 200W) loads on the seperate rails. Combing the rails in such a design might not really be a good idea (unless you have one overdesigned rail and route everything throug it). But my PSU design knowledge is limited to the voltages and reading the specs. ;) 
May 13, 2008 6:08:17 PM

Andrius said:
From what I know about rail design, splitting the load over several rails can reduce the strain on components (they can be less powerful so cheaper) in each rail. It also has benefits for OCP (less current through "one" wire).
The down side is you can only put "smaller"(say 200W) loads on the seperate rails. Combing the rails in such a design might not really be a good idea (unless you have one overdesigned rail and route everything throug it). But my PSU design knowledge is limited to the voltages and reading the specs. ;) 
Sorry guy, that's not the case. The reason for splitting up the rails is to be in compliance with the ATX 1.3 standard of 240VA per rail. The ATX 2.01 standard made the 240VA limit recommended not required, due to the more power hungry video cards.

Dagger, I looked and couldn't find definitive information on the slide switch on your PSU, so I called them. As I suspected, the ATX 1.3 position limits the current per rail to 240VA or 20A and in the ATX 2.01 position the PSU becomes a single rail, with a maximum current of 58A on the 12V.
May 13, 2008 8:31:08 PM

Zorg ... like I said ... from what I know (about this much ].[).
I read about splitting the loads part for the ATX 1.3 but didn't quite understand it that way. Why the 240VA (or ~200W) per rail was somewhat beyond me(I thought it was to save cost). Thanks for clearing it up.

A 650W Corsair does 52A on it's 12V (I know cause I just installed one 3 hours ago ;)  ). Someone is inflating their watts!

EDIT : my typo-rate has gone up 500% today... must be spring already ...
May 13, 2008 9:22:34 PM

May I borrow your thread, please? :D 

What's the best power supply for the configuration bellow?

* Case: LIAN LI PC-V2000

* Q9450 processor
* ABIT IP35 Pro
* 2x 1 GB RAM

* Promise Controller card TX4 SATA 300
* 10 Samsung HD753LJ 750 GB Hard Disk Drives

* 8800 GTS 512 MB G92 EVGA
* Blackmagic Intensity Pro capture card

Thanks.
May 13, 2008 9:41:05 PM

Andrius said:
A 650W Corsair does 52A on it's 12V (I know cause I just installed one 3 hours ago ;)  ). Someone is inflating their watts!
How did you determine that they were inflating their wattage?
May 13, 2008 10:34:52 PM

Zorg said:
How did you determine that they were inflating their wattage?

Yeah, 52amps on a single rail for 650w psu is high, but not outrageously high. So you can't just say it's fake outright.

And thanks for the info. Interesting stuff. I'll just keep it split as it is on default. It's overpowered for my system anyway. Still, is it better to keep it splited or combined?

As for that system, get more than 2gb ram, and x38/48 or p45 chipset motherboard if you want to overclock the q9450.
May 13, 2008 10:36:11 PM

^I meant the ePower unit.
12V 58A for 850W (ePower) (so 72W more on the 12V)
12V 52A for 650W (Corsair I trust more)
Something doesn't add up. I know it's a marketing label but someone isn't being honest.

I'd say in real loads the 850W is at most a 750W unit.
Like ULTRAs 350W undercover as a 600W PSU only less obvious. :D 
May 13, 2008 10:53:40 PM

Andrius said:
^I meant the ePower unit.
12V 58A for 850W (ePower) (so 72W more on the 12V)
12V 52A for 650W (Corsair I trust more)
Something doesn't add up. I know it's a marketing label but someone isn't being honest.

I'd say in real loads the 850W is at most a 750W unit.
Like ULTRAs 350W undercover as a 600W PSU only less obvious. :D 

Hmm... the default output with 4 split rails is 4x20amps, there is some loss at combining, but yeah, if it's only 58amps, it does seem a little low. There shouldn't be that much of a loss on combining. Not sure if any is diverted to other rails (5v rail, etc). I'd be interesting to know who Zorg got the 58amps from. :p 
May 13, 2008 11:11:00 PM

^That supports my "1 GOOD RAIL AND 3 BUM RAILS" theory.
I'd give myself a highfive but that would be playing with myself... :D 

So if we take the 58A that gives us 700W.
Add 150-200W from 3.3V and 5V. Apply marketing magic and we get 850W.
That 58A sounds quite realistic. :D 

He probably got that 58A from the 1337 73CH people at ePower. :heink: 
May 13, 2008 11:20:15 PM

Andrius said:
^That supports my "1 GOOD RAIL AND 3 BUM RAILS" theory.
I'd give myself a highfive but that would be playing with myself... :D 

So if we take the 58A that gives us 700W.
Add 150-200W from 3.3V and 5V. Apply marketing magic and we get 850W.
That 58A sounds quite realistic. :D 

He probably got that 58A from the 1337 73CH people at ePower. :heink: 

That makes no sense. If I read Zorg's post correctly, he didn't actually buy it and test, but called some tech support at epower, a retailer, or elsewhere. Why would any tech support cite specs from a defective unit instead of a normal one? :sarcastic: 
May 13, 2008 11:25:39 PM

Why do you thik it's from a defective unit?
80A would have an output of 960W for just the 12V rails.
They'd surely call it a 1K unit if it could deliver such a load don't you think?
Either that is a good value for it or they have an underpaid marketing staff. ;) 
May 13, 2008 11:36:43 PM

Andrius said:
Why do you thik it's from a defective unit?
80A would have an output of 960W for just the 12V rails.
They'd surely call it a 1K unit if it could deliver such a load don't you think?
Either that is a good value for it or they have an underpaid marketing staff. ;) 

If I remember correctly, the 1000w unit from that same company delivers the same ampage over 12v rails. The 850w unit just bleeds power from other rails. There is such a thing as distribution, you know. By your book, all 850 watt psu should have exactly the same 12v rail output.

No offence, but I'd like to hear from Zorg, or some others who can actually answer the question.
May 14, 2008 12:10:47 AM

None taken. As I said my knowledge of PSUs is very limited.
I've read reviews but I never cared for the details.
Just the output quality and potential issues.
I never meant my power values to be taken as "accurate".

By my book all PSUs would be rated at what they are, not what looks good on paper. And yes the rated power is spread over all rails.

The 1kW unit probably just has some higher rated components inside that allow more of the potential power to be distributed.

If you only load the 12V rails they can probably both deliver the 4x20A.
If you load all rails the 1kUnit probably can't deliver the 80A over 12V either (but that's just my guess). :) 
May 14, 2008 6:52:15 AM

As near as I can tell the argument is about the 58A single rail output. First let me clear up any misconceptions. As I said In my post I actually made the phone call to ePower. I talked to a guy that was trying to give me the ABCs. I thought as I was hanging up that I should have gotten his name, but I didn't. He put me on hold more than once in our conversation, the longest time being the question about the total single rail amperage. He came back after consulting with people, who I assume were the Tech support, and told me 58A. I'm guessing that there are no engineers in CA since they OEM from Tagan and that the 58A is probably the company line.

There is a lot more to a PSU than the claimed output i.e., the components used and the design. Don't get me wrong I don't know any more than I read. If you are interested, a good start would be the the reviews from jonnyguru. Do a search for reviews on the PSU in question.

As far as whether the "claimed" amperage is correct:
Quote:
PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad
+12V@60A
The 850 appears to be a little light, or they might just be trying to be honest.
!