Page 1:Super Flower SF-550F14MG Power Supply Review
Page 2:Packaging, Contents, Exterior And Cabling
Page 3:A Look Inside And Component Analysis
Page 4:Load Regulation, Hold-Up Time And Inrush Current
Page 5:Efficiency, Temperature And Noise
Page 6:Cross-Load Tests And Infrared Images
Page 7:Transient Response Tests
Page 8:Ripple Measurements
Page 9:Performance, Performance Per Dollar, Noise and Efficiency Ratings
Page 10:Pros, Cons And Final Verdict
Load Regulation, Hold-Up Time And Inrush Current
To learn more about our PSU tests and methodology, please check out How We Test Power Supply Units.
Primary Rails And 5VSB Load Regulation
Load Regulation testing is detailed here.
Our hold-up time tests are described in detail here.
The hold-up time tests don't go well. Not only is the measured hold-up less than 16ms (the ATX spec's minimum), but the Power_OK signal drops after, and not before, the PSU's rails go out of spec. This means that your motherboard gets a false power-good signal from the PSU. Indeed, we measured the +12V rail floating at around 10.8V when Power_OK dropped to zero. This is a very low voltage level that applies lots of stress to the voltage regulators of components fed by +12V.
In a high-end PSU like this one, we didn't expect such nasty behavior. We have to admit that we're very disappointed by Super Flower's decision to drop the power-good signal so late, which is probably done to give the false impression that the hold-up time lasts longer. By the end of our review, this is going to cost to this PSU a lot of performance points. Whereas it might have received an award for performance, there's no way it will now.
For details on our inrush current testing, please click here.
The measured inrush current was normal with both inputs (115V and 230V).
Load Regulation And Efficiency Measurements
The first set of tests explores voltage rail stability and efficiency. The applied load equals (approximately) 10 to 110 percent of the supply's maximum in increments of 10 percentage points.
We conducted two additional tests. During the first, we stressed the two minor rails (5V and 3.3V) with a high load, while the load at +12V was only 0.10A. This test reveals whether a PSU is Haswell-ready or not. In the second test, we determined the maximum load the +12V rail could handle with minimal load on the minor rails.
|Test #||12V||5V||3.3V||5VSB||DC/AC (Watts)||Efficiency||Fan Speed (RPM)||Noise (dB[A])||Temps (In/Out)||PF/AC Volts|
Load regulation is super tight on all rails except for 5VSB, which isn't particularly important as long as it meets the ATX specification's requirements. We also noticed that Super Flower improved this PSU's semi-passive mode. The fan doesn't stay inactive for long, compromising the lifetime of heat-sensitive components like electrolytic capacitors.
Since this PSU doesn't exclusively use Japanese capacitors, we were relieved to see the fan spinning during the 20 percent load test. Once the fan is engaged and the temperature is high, you will probably hear it, especially if you are sensitive to noise. On top of that, we noticed some bearing and vibration noise thanks to our super-sensitive sound analyzer (not our ears). This is why, in some of our measurements, we got higher noise levels compared to readings where the fan was actually spinning faster.
The PSU clears the 80 PLUS Gold spec's 20 percent and full load requirements by registering over 87 percent efficiency, However, it falls a little short in the 50 percent load test. Nonetheless, we give it a pass since we conduct our tests in much higher temperatures than the 80 PLUS organization. In general, this unit fares admirably, but it definitely isn't among the most efficient Gold-rated PSUs we've ever tested.
- Super Flower SF-550F14MG Power Supply Review
- Packaging, Contents, Exterior And Cabling
- A Look Inside And Component Analysis
- Load Regulation, Hold-Up Time And Inrush Current
- Efficiency, Temperature And Noise
- Cross-Load Tests And Infrared Images
- Transient Response Tests
- Ripple Measurements
- Performance, Performance Per Dollar, Noise and Efficiency Ratings
- Pros, Cons And Final Verdict