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Thermaltake Toughpower Grand RGB 850W Gold PSU Review: Going Full RGB

Transient Response Tests

Advanced Transient Response Tests

For details on our transient response testing, please click here.

Ιn these tests, we monitor the TPG-850AH3FSGR's response in several scenarios. First, a transient load (10A at +12V, 5A at 5V, 5A at 3.3V, and 0.5A at 5VSB) is applied for 200ms as the PSU works at 20 percent load. In the second scenario, it's hit by the same transient load while operating at 50 percent load.

In the next sets of tests, we increase the transient load on the major rails with a new configuration: 15A at +12V, 6A at 5V, 6A at 3.3V, and 0.5A at 5VSB. We also increase the load-changing repetition rate from 5 Hz (200ms) to 50 Hz (20ms). Again, this runs with the PSU operating at 20 and 50 percent load.

The last tests are even tougher. Although we keep the same loads, the load-changing repetition rate rises to 1 kHz (1ms).

In all of the tests, we use an oscilloscope to measure voltage drops caused by the transient load. The voltages should remain within the ATX specification's regulation limits.

These tests are crucial because they simulate the transient loads a PSU is likely to handle (such as booting a RAID array or an instant 100 percent load of CPU/GPUs). We call these "Advanced Transient Response Tests," and they are designed to be very tough to master, especially for a PSU with a capacity of less than 500W.  

We should note that the ATX spec requires capacitive loading during the transient rests. Our methodology applies a worst-case scenario with no extra capacitance on the rails, though. 

Advanced Transient Response at 20 Percent – 200ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.083V11.852V1.91%Pass
5V5.034V4.861V3.44%Pass
3.3V3.352V3.097V7.61%Fail
5VSB4.979V4.914V1.31%Pass

Advanced Transient Response at 20 Percent – 20ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.081V11.752V2.72%Pass
5V5.034V4.822V4.21%Pass
3.3V3.352V3.081V8.08%Fail
5VSB4.979V4.868V2.23%Pass

Advanced Transient Response at 20 Percent – 1ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.081V11.703V3.13%Pass
5V5.035V4.834V3.99%Pass
3.3V3.353V3.083V8.05%Fail
5VSB4.980V4.880V2.01%Pass

Advanced Transient Response at 50 Percent – 200ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.042V11.930V0.93%Pass
5V5.000V4.818V3.64%Pass
3.3V3.315V3.040V8.30%Fail
5VSB4.920V4.854V1.34%Pass

Advanced Transient Response at 50 Percent – 20ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.041V11.885V1.30%Pass
5V5.000V4.798V4.04%Pass
3.3V3.315V3.012V9.14%Fail
5VSB4.921V4.861V1.22%Pass

Advanced Transient Response at 50 Percent – 1ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.041V11.914V1.05%Pass
5V5.001V4.780V4.42%Pass
3.3V3.316V3.014V9.11%Fail
5VSB4.921V4.842V1.61%Pass

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The transient response we observed is not good, especially on the 3.3V rail where this PSU fails every test. A redesign is clearly needed in order to improve this platform's transient response performance.

Here are the oscilloscope screenshots we took during Advanced Transient Response Testing:

Transient Response At 20 Percent Load – 200ms

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Transient Response At 20 Percent Load – 20ms

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Transient Response At 20 Percent Load – 1ms

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Transient Response At 50 Percent Load – 200ms

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Transient Response At 50 Percent Load – 20ms

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Transient Response At 50 Percent Load – 1ms

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Turn-On Transient Tests

In the next set of tests, we measure the TPG-850AH3FSGR’s response in simpler transient load scenarios—during its power-on phase.

For our first measurement, we turn the PSU off, dial in the maximum current the 5VSB rail can handle, and switch the PSU back on. In the second test, we dial in the +12V rail's maximum load and start the PSU while it is in standby mode. In the last test, with the PSU completely switched off, we dial the maximum load the +12V rail can handle before restoring power. The ATX specification states that recorded spikes on all rails should not exceed 10 percent of their nominal values (+10 percent for 12V is 13.2V, and 5.5 V for 5V).    

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Aside from a tiny spike at 5VSB, the next two tests yield almost perfect slopes. These are very good results.

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