Although high-end and monstrous-capacity PSUs are the flagship of every company that wants to make a name for itself in the PSU market, it's the affordable PSU lines that actually pay the bills. Primarily, this is because they sell in high volumes, contrary to the more expensive PSUs that usually have low numbers. Naturally, then, all companies are after a strong portfolio of budget-oriented products--including, of course, PSUs.
SilverStone's entry level PSU line is called the Essential Series, and two new members were introduced today, which are also available in the EU market at highly competitive prices. The ET550-B and ET650-B are 80 PLUS Bronze certified and have only fixed cables, which are flat and consist of darkened wires. The maximum temperature for continuous full power delivery is at 40°C, and there are only protection sections: Over Power, Over Voltage, and Short Circuit Protection.
It would be nice if OTP was also included, especially since the temperature rating is 40°C and not 50°C as the ATX spec recommends.
|Max. DC Output||500W, 600W|
|Efficiency||80 Plus Bronze|
|Intel C6/C7 Power State Support||✓|
|+12V Max Power||ET-550B: 504W ET-650B: 600W|
|Combined +3.3, +5V||ET-550B: 110W ET-650B: 120W|
|Operating temperature||0°C ~ 40°C|
|Protections||Over Power Protection Over Voltage Protection Short Circuit Protection|
|Cooling||120mm Sleeve Bearing Fan|
|Number of Connectors||ET-550B, ET-650B: 1x EPS ET-550B: 2x PCIe (1x 6+2 pin, 1x 6 pin) - ET-650B: 4x PCIe (2x 6+2 pin, 2x 6 pin) ET-550B, ET-650B: 6x SATA ET-550B, ET-650B: 3x Peripheral ET-550B, ET-650B: 1x Berg|
|Dimensions||150mm (W) x 86mm (H) x 140 mm (D) 5.91" (W) x 3.39" (H) x 5.51" (D)|
The dimensions are restricted in both units, with only 14cm depth. The 120mm fan promises quite operation, and most likely, it's equipped with a sleeved bearing. Moreover, both units have a single EPS connector. The ET-550B has two PCIe connectors; only one of them has 6+2 pins, whereas its larger brother comes with two 8-pin PCIe connectors and a pair of 6-pin ones.
The mean time between failures (MTBF) is at 100,000 hours, according to SilverStone, which is quite a long period given that the sleeve bearing fan will last for around 25,000-30,000 hours in the best case scenario. Even double-ball and most fluid dynamic type bearings cannot last for 100,000 hours.
According to SilverStone, the MSRPs are set at 53,50€ for the ET-550B and 60,60€ for the ET-650B (both prices excluding VAT), in the EU market. In the U.S. market, we managed to spot only the ET-650B on Amazon, and it has a rather high price tag $90.