Gamers and enthusiasts are always on the lookout for crème de la crème hardware. It's easy to pick winning CPUs and graphics cards; less so for PSUs. We put four 80 PLUS Gold devices from Antec, FSP, Seasonic, and SilverStone under the magnifying glass.
Test Configuration, Holdup Time, Inrush Current, Peak, And Short-Circuit Test
Chroma Programmable AC Source 6530
Yokogawa WT210 Digital Power Meter
4 x 600 W Chroma 63306 for 12 V testing
4 x 300 W Chroma 63303 for 5 and 3.3 V testing
using Chroma High-Speed DC Load Mainframes 6334
Tektronix DPO3034 Digital Phosphore Oscilloscope (300 MHz)
110 and 230 V
0.25 A fixed current to simulate PC standby power on 5 Vsb
80plus Efficiency Testing
100/50/20% load, relative to specified total output Load distribution across 12/5/3.3V rails at the same proportion as specified for 100% testing at 110 V according to ATX 2.3 specification
Efficiency at Fixed Loads
25, 50, 85, 300, 500 W loads Load distribution across 12/5/3.3 V rails at the same proportion as specified for 100%
Peak Load Test
110% Overload Testing at maximum combined 12 V
Air intake vs. Outtake temperature delta tracking highest delta during all tests
Holdup-Time, Inrush Current, Peak and Short-Circuit Test
Every now and again you can catch the Seasonic X series on sale. I picked up a X-650 for about $110 with shipping. For that price, there isn't really anything better. With out a sale, I still say full modular and 80+ Gold is worth the premium over less auspicious contenders.
comptonEvery now and again you can catch the Seasonic X series on sale. I picked up a X-650 for about $110 with shipping. For that price, there isn't really anything better. With out a sale, I still say full modular and 80+ Gold is worth the premium over less auspicious contenders.Thanks for an excellent review.
I've used the X 650 in builds for two of my friends. I can't wait to get mine. The cabling is perfect for the Antec 1200 case.
Great review, but where is Corsair???? Certainly Corsair is one of the industry leaders and most recommended PSUs on the market.
This review would have benefited greatly by including both silver and gold rated PSUs from 750W - 1000W. Some Silver rated PSUs actually perform at nearly at gold levels (Corsair) and so they are a great value.
It would have been nice to have some expert comment on Au's claim that a non-modular cable setup improves efficiency. This appears to be a myth because we see many modular units outperform non-modular units in their class.
Not to forget is that a 80+ PSU generates about twice the heat of a 80+ Gold PSU, 20% compared to 10% of the power output. So a gold certified PSU should be significantly more quiet then a 80+ given equal cooling.
flongGreat review, but where is Corsair???? /citation]Corsair don't build there own PSU:s the are mostly Seasonic built, some CWT. For example the Corsair AX series are nearly identical to the Seasonic X series, the only difference is the fan.