Example 3: The Enthusiast’s System
Test Case 3: The Enthusiast’s PC
And now for our high-end configuration
This time around, we choose from the following candidates:
|Super Flower||Golden Green 450W||80 PLUS Gold||$83 (£N/A / €59.00)|
|Raptoxx||RT 600 SPL||None||$88 (£N/A / €62.00)|
|Aerocool||VT12XT 600W||80 PLUS Bronze||$115 (£N/A / €82.00)|
|Enermax||Modu 82+ II ErP 525W||80 PLUS Bronze||$145 (£N/A / €102.00)|
|Corsair||AX 750||80 PLUS Gold||$198 (£N/A / €140.00)|
A Big System Draws Big Power
This time, all of our PSUs survived. We purposely chose a wide spread of models for this scenario, covering the gamut in terms of price and capacity. Here are the results from this mixed batch of power supplies:
Again, we purposely pushed some of our candidates to their limit and beyond. And yet Super Flower's Golden Green 450W remained surprisingly stable throughout, behaving more like a solid 500W model.
At idle, Corsair's brawny AX 750 is at a bit of a disadvantage compared to the other contenders. However, as the system’s power consumption rises, so does this model’s efficiency. The Enermax Modu 82+ II ErP 525W has no apparent strengths or weaknesses, and it ends up in the middle of the pack. It is pleasantly quiet, though. Corsair also demonstrates exceptional acoustic performance. It's definitely not cheap, but you can certainly be confident in it.
Raptoxx's RT 600 SPL, on the other hand, is cheap and does decently enough if you can tolerate its noise level. While the extra 15 to 20W it tends to consume compared to the rest of the field add up over time, none of the more expensive models would amortize their higher price through power savings. Aerocool’s VT12XT 600W costs more than Raptoxx's entry, but is also quieter and a little more frugal when it comes to power use. Again, though, you probably won't recoup the higher price by saving a few watts over time.
Therefore APFC is only worthwhile if you were to use it with a battery backup system.
But the ATX specification seems to disagree. According to the spec, full load or "peak loading" allows 10% deviation from the nominal voltage for the 12V rail.
Also, Q about the power factor correction. It's probably the most difficult topic to understand. In this case, you say the load would be anything that used power. Are you talking about hardware like a GPU or the internals of the PSU like capacitors and such? Also, say the computer is putting load on the PSU. How is there idle current then?
Somehow, having a low efficiency under a 65W load is less expensive than low efficiency at 500W load, go figure :D.
If you want a PC to last a good 10-15 years you need to take care of it:
Clean dust, replace fans when they fail, replace thermalpaste, check your temperatures from time to time, not turn it on-off-on too fast, keep your Hard drives with some spare space and defraged if they are HDDs....
There is quite some work for a PC to keep their form, but its not like a human can lay down in bed eating cheese and drinking cola looking like a model either.
PSUs however have this strange aura of magic around them since some people vastly overestimate what power supply they need (I got a 700W TT one for a load of 320, go figure) and others buy things that are simply bad products, no matter how high the W are.
I did once burn a PC due to a bad PSU (and I even OCed the damn PC, went down in smoke.. I gotta say it was quite fun, but expensive), so I stay on the safe side (I just simply add an extra 20% for 12v rail amps as long as the price of a quality supply is not doubling).