EVGA SuperNOVA 550 G2 PSU Review

Packaging, Contents, Exterior And Cabling

Packaging

The box has the same design as the rest of the G2 units. On the front, we find the model description in a very large font, while the 80 Plus Gold badge is quite small and located near the bottom-left corner. On the back of the package there are two lists providing information on the product's features and the included cables and connectors along with the power specifications table. There are also three photos of the PSU, with one showing the bulk capacitor (provided by Nippon Chemi-Con) and a small scheme showing the fan's operation with the ECO mode activated.

Contents

Inside the box, the PSU is protected by two foam spacers and wrapped in a thick plastic bag. The contents include Velcro straps, a set of screws for chassis mounting, an ATX-bridging plug for switching on the PSU without having it connected to a system, an AC power cord and the user's manual. In addition to the necessary modular cables, EVGA also includes a nice pouch to store the unused cables.

Exterior

The PSU's finish is of the same high quality as the rest of the G2 units. The black matte surface of the casing doesn't attract fingerprints and looks fairly scratch-resistant. EVGA's characteristic punched fan grill makes the unit easily distinguishable among the different PSU brand models. On the front of the unit is the on/off switch, which is installed next to the AC receptacle, while on the sides we find the power specification labels. On the bottom there is a decal showing the unit's model number along with a small sticker depicting the part and serial numbers of the product.

The dimensions of the unit are restricted, which is expected because of the mid-capacity of this PSU. At the back of the unit the modular PCB includes nine sockets, with two of them dedicated to the main ATX cable. There are four 6-pin sockets for peripheral connectors and three 8-pin sockets for the PCIe and EPS cables. If EVGA used two cables with a pair of PCIe connectors each, then this unit could have four PCIe connectors instead of three (note that the 550 GS PSU comes with four PCIe and three EPS connectors).

Cabling

The cables are stealth and of good quality, considering the price of this product. Flat cables were not used, probably to add some extra filtering capacitors on the ATX, PCIe and EPS cables. On flat cables these caps wouldn't look nice at all.

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27 comments
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  • marraco
    Wow. Ripple behavior is fantastic.

    I would like to see another test. I had a PC with a Coolermaster PSU and 4 HD which were put to sleep mode/hibernation. Sometimes when the 4 HD were powered up the PC hanged, because the 4 HD demanded so much transient power that it threw the PSU voltages out of specs.

    I was thinking that I had a great PSU, but it was expensive garbage.
  • Aris_Mp
    this scenario is covered by the transient response tests, which I conduct in page #7 of the review.
  • giantbucket
    i don't get it... isn't this like trying to sell a Ferrari with only 3 cylinders to appeal to the sub-$100,000 clientele?
  • dstarr3
    Super Flower makes some great hardware. I'm all over this for my upcoming modest gaming rig.
  • damric
    It's all about the LEADEX.
  • dstarr3
    Quote:
    i don't get it... isn't this like trying to sell a Ferrari with only 3 cylinders to appeal to the sub-$100,000 clientele?


    The problem is that all of the best-built, best-featured PSUs were being made in 850, 1000, 1200, 1600W variants. If you had just a modest system, something mid-range, you either had to get a PSU that was way overkill, or you had to settle for PSUs that weren't so well built, or as efficient, or as fully-featured. So, this is an attempt to distribute very high-quality products to more of the market. And I am 110% A-Okay with that.
  • MasterDell
    Quote:
    Quote:
    i don't get it... isn't this like trying to sell a Ferrari with only 3 cylinders to appeal to the sub-$100,000 clientele?
    The problem is that all of the best-built, best-featured PSUs were being made in 850, 1000, 1200, 1600W variants. If you had just a modest system, something mid-range, you either had to get a PSU that was way overkill, or you had to settle for PSUs that weren't so well built, or as efficient, or as fully-featured. So, this is an attempt to distribute very high-quality products to more of the market. And I am 110% A-Okay with that.

    I agree with this to some extent because there are and were tons of PSU's made by Seasonic. Whether they were Antec units or XFX units OEM'd by Seasonic or not.. They were made by Seasonic. Now, as for fully modular, gold rated variants, those were and still are far and few between. However there are tons of Bronze semi-modular/none modular units which are great for mid-range builds.

    I actually own this unit and used it in a build with a 960. I got it right when it came out and for it's price, it offered a ton. I live in Canada and PSU's are way over-priced and the prices make no sense on them. But this unit was priced extremely well likely due to it's availability so I picked one up. No problems and I am glad EVGA is filling this market void. Good on em.
  • Nuckles_56
    Nice to see a low wattage power supply being reviewed for a change and particularly one which performs very well
  • turkey3_scratch
    I think I found my PSU. I don't need any 750W, but I had trouble finding a high quality 550W unit, and this is it!
  • g-unit1111
    I have two G2s, these are far and away some of the best PSUs on the market! Good to see that EVGA is making some lower wattage models that have the same quality and consistency.
  • marraco
    Quote:
    this scenario is covered by the transient response tests, which I conduct in page #7 of the review.

    There is something buggy with this design. I load all the article pages on new tabs, to save time, but some times an entire page doesn't load, or only loads partially; it stops "expanding".

    I tend to have problem with the graphics.
  • marraco
    Quote:
    i don't get it... isn't this like trying to sell a Ferrari with only 3 cylinders to appeal to the sub-$100,000 clientele?

    Maybe you have the common misconception about "good quality" PSU being only about maximum power.

    Is understandable because the practical importance of the tests run is not well explained.

    PSUs articles should expand some information about the practical consequences of having a bad result on each test.
  • wtfxxxgp
    Quote:
    Quote:
    i don't get it... isn't this like trying to sell a Ferrari with only 3 cylinders to appeal to the sub-$100,000 clientele?
    Maybe you have the common misconception about "good quality" PSU being only about maximum power. Is understandable because the practical importance of the tests run is not well explained. PSUs articles should expand some information about the practical consequences of having a bad result on each test.


    I agree with that last sentence. Great response to a seriously daft comment :)
  • Dark Lord of Tech
    I'd buy a Super Flower G2 over a SEASONIC all day.
  • JackNaylorPE
    Great.... now we can buy a G2 550 watter for the same price as the G2 750 .... the 750 watt models from EVGA always seem to have a rebate running. My son bought a 1000 watter cause it was cheaper than a 750 / 850. At it's current price, I certainly would never buy one. And ... a B2 750 is half the price.

    G2 550 - $89.99
    http://www.ncixus.com/products/?sku=111661

    G2 750 - $89.99 after rebate
    http://www.ncixus.com/products/?sku=94405manufacture=eVGA&promoid=1276

    Tho to be frank, if a user is doing a single card system that only needs 550 watts, I am more likely to recommend a $45 B2 750. The build quality between G2 and B2 is comparable and the $45 may oft be better spent elsewhere.

    The Ferrari rating is perhaps a bit off but more apt I think would be buying a Ferrari to drive 2.3 miles to the train station so you can commute to work each day by railroad. Will you benefit in any way from performance at actual system wattage ?

    For example, as PSU's generally see wide voltage variance the closer you get to the rated wattage, the more variation you see. With both the B2 750 and G2 550 at 550 watts, the B2 750 has better voltage regulation on all 3 rails.

    So yes, if a user goes by brand names / model lines or tier lists, then yes a G2 will seem a better choice. Will a 550 watt system put enough load on a system to gain an actual benefit from spending twice as much money ? That's not going to be as easy an answer. Build quality is the same, voltage regulation is actually better at half the price.

    http://www.ncixus.com/products/?sku=97531&vpn=110-B2-0750-VR&manufacture=eVGA&promoid=1444

    B2 9.0 Performance / 9.5 build quality
    http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=Story6&reid=393

    G2 10.0 Performance / 9.5 build quality
    http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=Story6&reid=380
  • Dark Lord of Tech
    I have a GS 550W Seasonic made model , purchased on sale at newegg for $59.99 , when first released.
  • JackNaylorPE
    276663 said:
    I'd buy a Super Flower G2 over a SEASONIC all day.


    Can't leave us hanging w/o reason why :) ... Recognizing of course that Seasonic RMA process is terrible and cost will always be more with Seasonic's premium lines. Then again I hate those extra 3 end silly PCI-E cables that EVGA provides .... always afraid someone is going to overload them when adding a 2nd GFX card.

    Reason I ask is I have 2 users with 750 watt (twin 970s air cooled) and 1000 watt (twin 980 Tis, custom loop, dual pump) watter builds coming up ... down to these two for the 1000 watter

    Seasonic Snow / Silent Series or EVGA G2 Series .... so far leaning towards the Snow on the 1000 watter and the G2 on the 750.


    276663 said:
    I have a GS 550W Seasonic made model , purchased on sale at newegg for $59.99 , when first released.


    But this is a $90 G2, which based upon above, which you would buy over the $60 Seasonic. I haven't used the GS series, yet ... surprised to have seen so few reviews.

    As a new entry in the game, EVGA has been making big use of the rebate thing, no doubt to gain market share but that comes at the expense of profit margins.

    I love it because I take advantage of it a lot and it does force the competition to do the same. But.... ya gotta wonder.... how much can they cut on the lower wattage models and how long will they continue to run these rebates.
  • damric
    @jacknaylorpe

    For overclocking, that low ripple is most important to me and I would gladly pay a premium for that. I have a few Golden Greens (aka B2, Capstone) and they are nice but they are not in the same league as the LEADEX.
  • honkuimushi
    1483573 said:
    i don't get it... isn't this like trying to sell a Ferrari with only 3 cylinders to appeal to the sub-$100,000 clientele?


    Well, it's not really at Ferrari prices. (That would be $200 or so?) If you're not overclocking and you're running only a single GPU, especially a Intel/Nvidia system, you're probably seeing your system max out at 300-350 Watts. That setup probably describes 75% of even home-built computers. And people running that would like a solid power supply to run their build without having to buy a 1000 Watt PSU to get nice features and good build quality, then having to deal with lousy efficiency.

    In Mini-ITX builds, modularity and efficiency are both key features. Cable management can be really challenging, and being able to detach the cables and set them up before you have to put the PSU in can be a lifesaver. I just built my dad a computer with a Cooler Master Elite 130 case and a 450 Watt Seasonic G-series PSU and I had tons of trouble keeping the 2 hardwired cables out of the way of the CPU fan. And once I put the PSU in, it was almost impossible to reach in and adjust the cables. Also, in such a enclosed environment, the smaller heat footprint of a low power, high efficiency PSU is highly desirable. And in a hotter environment, a PSU that uses high quality components can be very important.

    So I suppose I would say you're buying build quality more than anything else. A Ferrari isn't really the best really the best comparison since it's all about performance(and they have a reputation for being in the shop quite frequently.) The 550W might sacrifice a a few high performance features, but it still get something that's still very full featured at a price and specs that make sense for your average customer. It's more expensive than the "bargain" options, but provides better value. If I was going to compare it to cars, I would compare it to a mass market Tesla

    My next build will be a Mini-ITX Skylake build and this would be a great PSU for it. Unfortunately, I've only found one webshop here in Japan that carries the EVGA PSUs and they only have the lower quality ones.
  • honkuimushi
    276663 said:
    Then again I hate those extra 3 end silly PCI-E cables that EVGA provides .... always afraid someone is going to overload them when adding a 2nd GFX card.


    On the other hand, I like the SATA cables on the Super Flower PSUs better than the ones on Seasonic PSUs. On my Elite 130 build, they placed the the HDDs and SSDs either upside down or flat against a flat surface. Without any lead on the connectors for the Season G-series cables, I couldn't get them to attach. I ended up using the molex cable and, since I had several molex to SATA converters, using those to attach the drives. With the leads on the Super Flower SATA cables, I could have just used that.
  • turkey3_scratch
    276663 said:
    I have a GS 550W Seasonic made model , purchased on sale at newegg for $59.99 , when first released.


    How does the GS compare to the B2 and G2?
  • Dark Lord of Tech
    It's based on the Seasonic G series , I believe , so it's good.
  • JackNaylorPE
    410076 said:
    @jacknaylorpe For overclocking, that low ripple is most important to me and I would gladly pay a premium for that. I have a few Golden Greens (aka B2, Capstone) and they are nice but they are not in the same league as the LEADEX.


    If ripple is your concern, the G2 550 is certainly a winner. The Leadex Gold is one of the few platforms that can actually be said to give Delta a run for their money.

    I'd put ripple 2nd to voltage stability but it doesn't matter. The G2 750 will certainly have better ripple than the B2 750 at full load. But the part you are leaving out is that ripple rises the closer you get to max load. PSUs are at their peak performance point efficiency wise at half load. Similarly, ripple of the 750 watt B2 under a 500 watt load is much much lower than it is at the 750 watt load. This is not something that will be factored in going by tier lists or platforms and something that can easily be wasted going with anything less than a motherboard which can match this low noise level.


    1973494 said:
    Well, it's not really at Ferrari prices. (That would be $200 or so?) If you're not overclocking and you're running only a single GPU, especially a Intel/Nvidia system, you're probably seeing your system max out at 300-350 Watts. That setup probably describes 75% of even home-built computers. And people running that would like a solid power supply to run their build without having to buy a 1000 Watt PSU to get nice features and good build quality, then having to deal with lousy efficiency.



    As for the 300 - 350 watts, a single GFX card can pull over 350 watts, and that's before it's overclocked
    http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Gigabyte/GTX_980_Ti_G1_Gaming/28.html

    - Intel 4690k can easily pull 135 watts overclocked

    - Intel 5830k can easily pull 235 watts overclocked

    - Gigabyte 980 Ti can pull 295 - 359 @ out of the box .... and the power limit on that card can be raised 20% w/ Afterburner, so we're talking 354 - 431.

    As for efficiency, to operate at peak efficiency on a 550 watts PSU, that would be a 275 watt load. A 4790k (88 watts) and GTX 970 (192 watts) will reach that before overclocking. While I am in now way knocking the G2 or the choice of a 550 watt PSU. If concerned about heat and efficiency...and budget, a larger / cheaper PSU **may** give you more of those things.

    An overclocked 4690k (135), one overclocked 970 (212) and say 40 watts for rest of system would equal say 387 watts. So while a 450 - 500 watter would suffice, if ya catch a deal on a larger unit, it is certainly worth considering. A similarly 80+ rated 750 watt unit would be more efficient, product less heat and, most likely, have lower ripple / better voltage regulation.