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Brand new Power Supply heating up.

Last response: in Components
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November 15, 2012 5:52:29 PM

Hello, I'm Michael. I recently bought (In August) a XGR Extreme power 500W PSU as my previous standard one died. The only problem is that it seems to heat quite a lot. Back in august, I was using a home built computer which had an Intel Pentium D 945 3.4GHz Slightly overclocked ... 3GB Ram, Nvidia GTS 250 and a Cooler Master Vortex 211p as cooler. I was running it with a standard PSU and it died. So I bought the XGR one I mentioned above. At first, it seemed to heat a bit but my friends said that it was not enough to call it "hot" so I ignored the heat and continued into playing my games. One day in August, my computer shut itself down and never turned on again. One capacitor failed and bursted the motherboard and also the Cooler Master Vortex 211p CPU Cooler (Which by the way reduces my CPU heat by 50%) was extremely hot, hotter than when I was using a stock fan. The computer was obviously dead but the Power Supply somehow survived. Tonight, my mom's computer ran into a Power Supply problem ( It started to give strange noises like something is stuck between its fan's blades). I decided to swap for the XGR which was sleeping in its box for about three months. The computer booted up but I still notice that the power supply is quite hot when I touch on the side of the case. It was not the case with my mom's standard PSU (No brand name D: ) and even with the strange noises, it was running fine and with no heat.

I was wondering if the reason why my computer died in August was the XGR power supply which was "pushing" its heat to my processor? Or maybe getting so hot that it damaged the motherboard and the other components?

Oh ... also an important note... the XGR power supply's fan is on its bottom, which means that it is inside the case, maybe it is an exhaust fan and should be placed on the bottom? In other words, is the fact that the fan is inside the case making it hotter as it cannot exhaust its heat by the outside like other power supplies?

Thank you for reading and I am hoping for your answers.
Regards

-Michael
November 15, 2012 5:54:05 PM

Oh just for you guys to understand, it looks like this Cooler Master Extreme power plus
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November 15, 2012 6:08:47 PM

If the power supply fan is blowing into the computer for some reason, then yes it could cause more heat; it's entirely possible, but it wouldn't cause a capacitor to explode.

I would however suspect that the PSU was operating outside of ATX specifications (supplying 5.5V instead of 5V for example). Overvolting a capacitor could cause it to pop, and it could also contribute to the CPU heat (though I believe the mobo regulates the voltage to the CPU, I'm not sure though, and it could be that it expects a clean 3.3v supply to regulate properly down to CPU/RAM voltages). It's also a bad sign that the PSU itself is hot, which likely indicates that it's pushed to it's design limits, and probably isn't capable of supplying 500W to anything.

Order a new PSU for your mom, don't continue to use that one.

Many no-name PSUs are junk by design, if you are lucky it will just fail early, but poor voltage control (among other things) could cause damage to your computer. If you want to repair your PC, start with a good quality PSU, and don't continue to use the XGR.

Here is a helpful list that breaks PSU's down by quality: http://www.eggxpert.com/forums/thread/323050.aspx

I typically recommend Seasonic, XFX, PC Power & Cooling, and Corsair as high quality brands, but individual models can vary so it is wise to do research (look at the sources cited on the eggxpert post, such as jonnyguru for reviews).

edit: Don't fall into the trap in thinking that a higher wattage PSU is going to be better quality. There are plenty of terribly made 800w power supplies which could do the same damage as what you've got.
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November 15, 2012 6:16:09 PM

If it's anything like a cooler matter extreme it's garbage and should absolutely not be used. It wouldn't.be "pushing heat" it would be pushing unstable and out of spec voltage they can seriously hurt components. Such as destroying capacitors.
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November 15, 2012 6:18:29 PM

Thank you for your fast reply. I am actually cleaning my mom's old one , which was making noises, and I hope I will not have to order a new one. I see your point about the XGR, I was not satisfied by it from the start as it was giving like a warm smell from the computer and it is still doing it. I will swap it back and see what It does. Thank you again. Have a good day/night. =)
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November 15, 2012 6:29:57 PM

unksol said:
If it's anything like a cooler matter extreme it's garbage and should absolutely not be used. It wouldn't.be "pushing heat" it would be pushing undertake and out of spec voltage they can seriously hurt components. Such as destroying capacitors.


If it's pulling outside air in and venting hot air out into the case, it's heat problem would be warming the whole computer (It's odd phrasing, but it does make sense). Also, if the computer is in a cabinet and relatively enclosed, it's likely the PSU is sucking in air being exhausted by the rear case fan, essentially pulling exhaust back into the PC.

I would suspect that this would make CM PSUs look good, one listing i found for it was 1500Rs (approx 27.4$USD), and if I'm interpreting currencies correctly, it can be found for 1/2 that price elsewhere.
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November 15, 2012 6:35:48 PM

Well it might actually be my fault as I guess it was designed for cases whose's power supplies were located on the bottom. My friend recommended me the XGR one as he used it for about 2 years for gaming and said that it was really nice for my budget. He had a Mid tower case which comprises putting the PSU on the bottom and such cases offer airflow facilities for PSU's that evacuate from the bottom.
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November 15, 2012 6:45:25 PM

One person having a good experience with a power supply doesn't make it good. Newegg reviews are full of people praising really terribly designed power supplies, simply because extremely thorough examination (with special equipment like oscilloscopes) is required to have any idea how good a power supply is.

Without thorough analysis, the only reviewing you can do of a power supply are:
Working/not working
excessive temperature
Voltages (assuming you have a multimeter, software reported voltages are not always accurate)

They can't check things like:
Voltage ripple
Operating efficiency
Operating heat at different load levels (and different ambient temps)
Max sustained output
Peak output.
Voltage stability under load

If you read a few PSU teardown reviews you will learn quite a lot; the seperation between good and bad PSU are often things that no user can measure (which is why there are so many terrible PSUs on the market).
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November 16, 2012 6:22:37 AM

I figured what the problem was. It was the fact that the PSU's fan was exhausting air to its bottom, which means, that it was exhausting its heat right above my Processor which obviously is not great. I disconnected the bottom fan and I placed a fan at its back. Its rather small but I'm sure that it'll do the job. Thank you guys. Not only I found why my PSU was heating up, I also found why my previous computer died. Thanks.
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