Who's Who In Power Supplies, 2011: Brands Vs. Manufacturers

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I have noticed more PSUs omitting the UL label.

It cannot be stressed enough that a poor PSU can cause a fire and/ or take out multiple components within the PC when it blows (surges). A UPS can relieve some of the stress on a PSU, but a high quality PSU can relieve some of the stress upon you over the lifetime of the PC. Most big name mfg.s of PCs cut corners on the PSU.
 

randomstar

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[citation][nom]randomstar[/nom]" Logisys, Europe only"?I see them frequently here in houston, in mixed version of cases.and so far I can honestly say they stink. I can send you pics and UL numbers if you need- and a link to a local site that sells them.[/citation]


www.basscomputers.com
and they seem proud of them.. I have told them on more than one occasion what crap they are.
 

buzznut

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I liked this very much the first time we saw it a few months back. I can't help wishing that there was some sort of metric for establishing quality with each manufacturer, or perhaps just a series of PSU's that are reliable.

I know we should take each PSU on its own merits, and I do, but I know very little about many of these companies. I can make generalizations about a few like FSP, Seasonic, and Superflower, but I know precious little about the crappy OEM's.
 

phaedrus2129

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Generalization for crappy OEMs: they're crappy.
 

JocPro

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Since the last article, I've tried to find information about my $60 USD Frontier Technology Inc. / ACE Power 550W Active PFC 80 Plus certified power supply... but since they lack an UL number (but sports the UL logo in the PSU's sticker)... Anyone knows something about this manufacturer?
 

flyflinger

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I suppose this explains why Seasonic branded Seasonics are underwhelming from the price/performance standpoint... they're OEM for a lot of brands and can't exactly undercut their customers!
 

sincreator

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I have the Thermaltake Toughpower 750w, and it has been going strong for over five years. It doesn't appear on the list but I assume it is made by channel well since the other tough power PSUs are by them. I would buy another one in a heartbeat. I overclock alot, and have overclocked on alot of different components without issue. I have also had multiple video cards running on it with overclocks on everything, and I have 4 HDD's and 6 fans running as well. My PC is loud. lol. I believe this PSU was between 2-$300 at time of purchse. If I was to buy another PSU today I would either get another Toughpower or a corsair.
 

youssef 2010

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Let me just clarify one thing. Getting a working piece of hardware even from the most reputable manufacturer ever is luck-of-the-draw. If you don't believe me , check the reviews on Newegg.com
 
It seems many of those comments now understand that just because it's sold by [insert brand name here]that doesn't tell if it is good or bad. However, it seems that many didn't read the last page.

"A PSU is not automatically inferior because it was made by a contractor with which you aren't familiar. These companies make all kinds of products, from luxury brands to pure garbage. Again, it's a question of hitting different production targets. Is the product built for quality or aggressive cost reduction?"

Just because it's made by [insert manufacturer name here] doesn't necessarily mean it is good or bad. If I go to Seasonic and ask for:

1. Build me a 750w PSU for $50; I'd like to order $1,000,000 worth.

or

2. Build me the best PSU you can build for under $200, I'd like to order $1,000,000 worth.

Seasonic is going to take either order.

If I put out a RFP to build a PSU with components identified by manufacturer and part number, will on manufacturers PSU perform better than any other building w/ the same component list ?

Look at Antec's listing ..... Seasonic made the disappointing Eco and Neo series but they also made the well received TP New and and HCG series. Note also that Antec's premium lines (CP and SG series) were made by Delta.

Looking at Corsair, it gets harder to judge what's what if you judge by who built it. Seasonic made the AX750, AX850 HX 450, HX520, HX650 which are considered to be Corsair's 1st tier offerings .... But wait a minute, Seasonic also made the 2nd tier TX650. Now, we look again and see that Channel Well (apparently seen by most here as inferior to the Seasonics) also made the HX750, HX850, TX750, TX850. Looking at XFX, Seasonic makes all three of their lines, does that means that they are all equal quality ?

In short, PSU vendors sell sell products to fill various market niches. PSU manufacturers also sell products to fill various market niches. If ya are replacing one security blanket (buying by brand) with a new security blanket (buying by manufacturer) you may have narrowed your range by avoiding really dismal products, but if you are now forging ahead with unwavering confidence based upon knowing who made it, that confidence is misplaced.

 

nerrawg

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Hi Toms,

Great article as usual, was wondering if you could do a list of recommended PSUs for the wattage - kind of like what you do for graphics cards and CPUs. I understand that it will be a bit different for PSUs of course as there are so many mores brands and prices are very different internationally as well as between stores. I therefore suggest a recommended list for each typical wattage grouping (i.e 300-400W, 450-550W 600-750W 800-950W 1000W and up - just an example of potential groupings) might be more useful. The reader could then look at the list to find the models that reliable and efficient at the wattage (or 12V rail capacity and amount of 6/8 pin connectors if they want Tri/Quad SLI/CF) they require and then use this to find the best deal for them. If Toms had a list like this it would become a must read new system builders. There already is kind of a list in the Forums thanks to the excellent work of Proximon and others, but an official TOMs list or article/resource would be great.
 
[citation][nom]sincreator[/nom]I have the Thermaltake Toughpower 750w, and it has been going strong for over five years.[/citation]

This probably wasn't the best quote for me to pick but it was the closest of it's type to the end of the thread :)

"Still going stong" to my mind is hardly an accomplishment worthy of accolades. It's suppossed to do that. What I am looking for is:

1. Voltage Stability - Running OCCT thru GPU and CPU tests how stable are the voltages ? A stable OC requires a stable voltage supply and one of the ways for an OC to fail is that the memory, CPU and GPU are dealing with voltages that are constantly varying or stray further from the nominal. This of course requires that the MoBo's voltage control also is equal to the task. Read a quality PSU review .... noise, ripple, voltage variance are all key to component life and how far you can push ya system. The ATX standard allows for a 5% voltage variation. On a non-OC'd single GFX card system, I look for 2 - 3%, on a Heavily OC'd system w/ 2 GFX cards, I want 1%.

2. Acoustics - My builds also have a lot of fans running but they are running quietly. That means that the PSU has to be able to do the same.
 

verbalizer

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now this is one the the better articles ever on PSU's..
thanks Tom's.

P.S. - it's good to know that I have reputable companies / manufacturers behind my units.
BFG, Rocketfish and HEC seem to be solid choices but now I am starting to re-think about my Rosewill PSU
and maybe swap that one out; I was thinking of buying second one for the next round of upgrades too.
This article is right on time..
 

top_playa

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WOW, no mention of Zippy Emacs?? (PSL-6C00V 1200w)
Guys, wake up !!

+12V main converter: two 12V 50A AC-DC converter with APFC, (ON SEMI)NCP1653A for PFC controlling, and NCP1280G for PWM controlling.
main topology: Active-clamp forward ZVS converter, Synchronous Rectifier (IRFB3307*6 for each half) on secondary side.
+5V & +3.3V: DC-DC VRM based on Intersil ISL6545 buck controller
main transformer aspect: PQ-core
output caps: KZE and PSC(polymer) caps
fan: 80*80*38mm ball bearing rear fan*1 made by Sanyo Denki.

IMHO best supply on the market today !
Tier 1 by a long shot
 

verbalizer

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you sound like a f'n sales pitch.
know one here needs a zippy unless running full load 24/7.
they are too expensive anyways..
 

nebun

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corssair sells some wonderful power supplies....i love my almost year old HX1000W power supply....it's been runing my 480 sli non stop while folding without any problems.
 

sincreator

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[citation][nom]JackNaylorPE[/nom]This probably wasn't the best quote for me to pick but it was the closest of it's type to the end of the thread "Still going stong" to my mind is hardly an accomplishment worthy of accolades. It's suppossed to do that. What I am looking for is:1. Voltage Stability - Running OCCT thru GPU and CPU tests how stable are the voltages ? A stable OC requires a stable voltage supply and one of the ways for an OC to fail is that the memory, CPU and GPU are dealing with voltages that are constantly varying or stray further from the nominal. This of course requires that the MoBo's voltage control also is equal to the task. Read a quality PSU review .... noise, ripple, voltage variance are all key to component life and how far you can push ya system. The ATX standard allows for a 5% voltage variation. On a non-OC'd single GFX card system, I look for 2 - 3%, on a Heavily OC'd system w/ 2 GFX cards, I want 1%.2. Acoustics - My builds also have a lot of fans running but they are running quietly. That means that the PSU has to be able to do the same.[/citation]

My case has 80mm fans in it, that's why the fans are loud. They spin in access of 3000rpm. Larger fans tend to run at way lower RPM's and push just as much air while staying quieter. It may be time for me to get a new case. lol.

I researched this PSU extensively before I purchased it. It's 85%+ certified, and all the reviews were extremely positive. Like these reviews:

http://www.techspot.com/review/5-thermaltake_toughpower_750w/page3.html

http://www.bjorn3d.com/read.php?cID=940&pageID=2436

http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=Story3&reid=7


PS. I had to look for the reviews for my particular PSU, since it is 5 years later and the newer Toughpower PSUs may be different in some ways.


 

chriskrum

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I have a Corsair TX750 and when I checked the UL number about a year ago, I believe it indicated that it was made by Seasonic. I'd double check it but, it's in a p180 (upside down so the label is to the back and I don't have time to pull it at the moment).

Perhaps someone else can verify this.
 

chriskrum

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That's what this chart says, however, the UL on mine is not for Channel Well, it's for Seasonic. Could there have been a change in manufacturer?
 

mosox

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Great article. Interesting how some designer PSU are often considered to be better than the actual OEM PSUs even if it's the same thing. Name recognition.

A lot of people wouldn't buy a Sirtec or Seventeam unless it's written Antec or Silverstone on it.
 

top_playa

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LOL, To expensive??, ur probably the clown that buys a 70 dollar power supply for ur $300 video card.
Got my zippy for $300.00 direct from their office in Cali. (Custom Made to fit my Antec1200 V3) (Cheaper than the 1200WATT PC Power and Cooling)

Powers my 2 GTX 580's SC in SLI flawlessly.

Sales pitch?? My Son,
I'm merely pointing out IMHO the BEST PSU on the market. People want stability no? Your right on one thing, 24/7 stability at full load.
Why would you want to chance anything else when you can have that ??

People read here trying to get answers, what power supply should I invest in? what's fully certified? whats going to fit my case? whats going last ? etc... When I did the research the Zippy Emacs PSL-6C00V 1200w crushed the competition, period...

I guess they don call you malmental for nothing, go back to washing dishes in a restaurant or whatever it is you do and keep buying ur $70 dollar supplies kido.
 
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