How To Select The Right Case

Power Supplies Can Also Be A Pitfall, Continued

Quality power supplies can be expensive. In an informal survey with our local retailers, the price for a 350-365 watt power supply started at $52 and went up from there. Of course, the 400-465 watt power supplies will cost you even more, but if you have a case that is loaded, your power requirements may necessitate this kind of investment.

Comparing the labels that are on every power supply isn’t always possible, but it makes very sound sense. After comparing the labels on the power supplies, you can put the hype of the box behind you and get to the real heart of the matter. The label on the power supply itself can truly reveal what you are buying.

Comparing power supplies can be tricky, but we have found that it is important to get beyond the hype that is on the box. Looking at the labels that are attached the power supply gives you a clear indication of what kind of performance you can expect.

The Enermax EG365P-VE seen in the pictures above included a new feature that we had not seen before, called "Manual Control." The Manual Control’s EG365P-VE option allows you to use a control knob located on the back of the power supply to adjust the speed of the 80mm and the 92mm fans in the power supply from 1500 RPM to 3000 RPM. By using the manual control knob, you are able to turn down the fan speed to get the fan noise to a reasonable level, allowing you to find a fan setting that balances the cooling and the noise control. We found that this was a very innovative idea from Enermax that works very well, and we continue to find that power supplies can be a major source of noise in the typical case configuration.

Our advice continues to be that you should consider purchase of a case without a power supply and then purchase a quality power supply. This way, you know exactly what you are getting. If you wish to purchase a case that includes the power supply, make sure that it is a high quality power supply with a good reputation for quality. For example, both Antec and Enermax sell cases that include their own power supplies.