Opinions on quiet SLI mid (to low) budget PSU

PSUs: The source of DC power for all components in the PC & often a big noise source.

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monographix
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Opinions on quiet SLI mid (to low) budget PSU

Post by monographix » Sat Apr 08, 2006 2:54 pm

Hello

I am in search for a, realy and proven to be, Quiet PSU called to support the following, but within a price range of 70-110 USD or Euros (if possible) :

Opteron 146 ( @ 2500-2700 MHz )
2 x 6800 GT SLI @ 430/1100 MHz
2 x 1GB PC3200 @ 250 MHz 1T RAM
2 x ATA133 80 GB HDD
1 x IDE DVD-ROM
1 x IDE DVD-RW

Audigy 2 value
Gameport Joystick & Throttle
USB Sidewinder steering wheel / pedals
USB external USB2.0 ATA 133 HDD (has own power supply)
USB 2.0 Scanner
USB Inkjet
USB WebCam
USB Track IR (http://www.naturalpoint.com)
USB ADSL modem

maybe a com port Wacom Intuos tablet

2 x 80cm case fans (5volted)
4 HDD cooler fans (5volted)


Priorities are
  • Lowest of noise
  • Low idle / standby power and ofcourse
  • Acceptable efficiency and reliability


The brands that i can find here are :
  • Enermax
  • Seasonic
  • Hiper
  • Tagan
  • Heroichi HEC
  • Akasa
  • Fortron / FSP group
  • Zalman
  • Thermaltake
  • Coolermaster
  • OCZ
  • Sharkoon
  • Silverstone
  • Thermaltake
  • Trust
  • Xilence (?)
  • Levicon


I am aiming at an aproximate 500W class PSU, is there a chance that this wont be enough ?

I apologize for not using only the information already provided in this sector but i felt quite overwhelmed and unable to come to viable conclusions after an hour or so of reading, too much info. (too many PSUs....)

Thanks for any input in advance
Last edited by monographix on Mon Apr 10, 2006 10:50 am, edited 2 times in total.

kenji
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Post by kenji » Sat Apr 08, 2006 4:45 pm

I can't say a whole lot about all of the brands that you listed, but I can recommend both the seasonic S12 power supplies, and then 2nd the coolermaster (which isn't quite as quiet as the seasonic- but still very quiet)

SnooP
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Post by SnooP » Sat Apr 08, 2006 5:37 pm

500w will do fine. I'd run that off an antec sp2 350w without a worry :)
Anyways try a seasonic s12 500w, its quiet and has dual pcie connectors for the 2 6800gts. theres also the antec neo HE 500w, which is quiet, but be careful (many users have issues with this psu).
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dhanson865
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Re: Opinions on quiet SLI mid (why not low) budget PSU

Post by dhanson865 » Sat Apr 08, 2006 6:32 pm

monographix wrote: 2 x 6800 GT SLI @ 430/1100 MHz
How many 5.25 drive connectors do you need?

a recent tally on a system of mine was:

1. Asus motherboard connector
2. optical drive #1
3. optical drive #2
4. PCIe video card #1 (by way of adapter)
5. PCIe video card #1 (by way of adapter)
6. PATA Hard drive #1
7. Case fans
8. PCIe video card #2 (by way of adapter)
9. PCIe video card #2 (by way of adapter)

This was with an older seasonic power supply with NO, thats Zero PCIe power connectors.

With a new sleeved seasonic S12 power supply that would be:

1. Asus motherboard connector
2. optical drive #1
3. optical drive #2
4. PATA Hard drive #1
5. Case fans

with a possibility of

6. PCIe video card #2 (by way of adapter)
7. PCIe video card #2 (by way of adapter)

depending on the number of PCIe power connectors

So if you get the new generation of Sleeved S12 you could run that system on:

S12 430 with 6 5.25 drive connectors, 1 PCIe connector, and one or more 5.25" Y spliter(s) + PCIe adapter.

or

S12 500 with 9 5.25 drive connectors + 2 PCIe connectors

Seems a lot more conveinent to get the S12 500 when you are going SLI with PATA drives.

If you were using SATA hard drives instead you could get away with using the S12 430 + a single adapter.

The 430 is cheaper than the 500 and you aren't likely to push the output on either. Don't forget to look for sleeved cables if you get an S12 or you won't get as many connectors. Some ads may not make it obvious if they are selling the new or old version.

For more info on the S12 changes see http://forums.silentpcreview.com/viewtopic.php?t=30441

BTW what motherboard are you using?
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monographix
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Post by monographix » Sun Apr 09, 2006 7:14 am

thanks everybody.

Motherboard is Asrock SLI32 ...

5.25 connectros (4pin molexes?) :
i guess i will need 2xOptical + 2xPATA= 4 such molexes plus one more where i can (can i?) connect all the fans. (2x80 case fans & 4 small fans in total of the HDD coolers, all of them being 5volted)
Last edited by monographix on Mon Apr 10, 2006 5:06 am, edited 2 times in total.

monographix
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Post by monographix » Sun Apr 09, 2006 10:08 am

Οk, i thought i'd need definitely 500+ W for my SLI system, i guess according to what you people say i can get away with a 460-480W PSU? Especially since much later i will upgrade to SATA HDD (The plan is to get next year a second 6800GT, probably used, and one year later replace my PATA HDDs with SATA2)

So here are the price / Wattage candidates that can be found localy:

  • THERMALTAKE PUREPOWER 460W - price 80
  • AKASA PAXPOWER 460 - price 77
  • TAGAN TG 480-U01 480W DUAL FAN (2xPCI-E. 21 dB(A)) - price 87
  • HEROICHI ACE POWER 480PB SILENT PFC (2xPCI-E) - price 81
  • HIPER HPU-4K 480 (peak 530. 14db) - price 81
  • HEROICHI WinPower 550 - price 93-95
  • COOLERMASTER RS-450-ACLY 450W - price 91



HIPER and HEROICHI (HEC) are used a lot here and haven't heard any negative coment or shortcoming so far, they are suggested around. The low noice spec of the HIPER (as much as this is true in real use ofcourse) combined with the price are aluring a lot but i would like some opinion regarding the SLI handling of this one (since 2xPCIe is not mentioned in its specs)

.

monographix
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Post by monographix » Sun Apr 09, 2006 2:14 pm

I incline towards the Hiper K480 Type-R. Which though is lacking PCIe connectros and has 8 x 4-pin connectors.

Will my SLI system be safe and performance intact using those 8 molexes as following : ?

1st @ PCIe VGA #1
2nd @ PCIe VGA #2

3d @ PATA HDD #1
4th @ PATA HDD #2

5th @ Optical #1
6th @ Optical #2

7th @ All fans
8th - free?

.

Butcher
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Post by Butcher » Sun Apr 09, 2006 2:32 pm

monographix wrote:I incline towards the Hiper K480 Type-R. Which though is lacking PCIe connectros and has 8 x 4-pin connectors.

Will my SLI system be safe and performance intact using those 8 molexes as following : ?

1st @ PCIe VGA #1
2nd @ PCIe VGA #2

3d @ PATA HDD #1
4th @ PATA HDD #2

5th @ Optical #1
6th @ Optical #2

7th @ All fans
8th - free?

.
PCIe adapters require two molex connections (preferrably off different rails).

monographix
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Post by monographix » Sun Apr 09, 2006 2:36 pm

ooops ...

Will it work then ths way? :

molex 1 @ PCIe VGA #1
molex 2 @ PCIe VGA #1

molex 3 @ PCIe VGA #2
molex 4 @ PCIe VGA #2

molex 5 @ PATA HDD #1
molex 6 @ PATA HDD #2

molex 7 @ Optical #1 & 5v moded fans
molex 8 @ Optical #2 & 5v moded fans
Last edited by monographix on Mon Apr 10, 2006 12:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

burebista
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Post by burebista » Sun Apr 09, 2006 10:28 pm

From your last list I'd say to go with Akasa, they are OEM Enhance Electronics (like Silverstone Strider series or ASUS PSU's), and they are quiet too.
We have them here in Romania and I see alot of happy people with Akasa. :)

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Re: Opinions on quiet SLI mid (why not low) budget PSU

Post by dukla2000 » Sun Apr 09, 2006 11:23 pm

monographix wrote:mid (why not low) budget PSU
The reason to pay more for 1 psu compared to another, IMHO, is for improved efficiency. Thus if you are comparing 2 psus that are the same efficiency I would buy the cheaper one.

However: you are in a hot climate and have a high power system. Based on that I would recommend you seek out high efficiency (very close to or exceeeding 80%) supplies and from your initial list I know Fortron & Seasonic have options. Check the reviews on this site. The reason is simple: to cause an argument lets assume your PC uses 300W DC power at full throttle. The less efficient psus may well be around 65% efficient, the better ones say 80%. The less efficient psu will thus dissipate 161W of heat inside the psu itself, the better one will dissipate 75W. That is a huge difference in the cooling requirements for the psu itself.
[size=75]2009/Oct: Jetway JNC81-LF * 4850e naked under fanless Xigmatek Apache * Antec mini Skeleton w/Nexus 120mm PWM fan * Delta 90W brick w/Skeleton DC-DC board * WD2500BEVT 250Gb blue[/size]

monographix
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Post by monographix » Mon Apr 10, 2006 2:26 am

unfortunately due to limitations in time and availability and budget the list finaly looks like its coming down to those two candidates:
  • Hiper Type-R 480
  • HEC Ace Power 480 (if i could find a Win Power 480 i would definitely got that one)
so in regards to what you were describing about efficiency what your thoughts would be reading those two reviews results :

http://www.extremeoverclocking.com/revi ... 0UB_7.html

http://www.extremeoverclocking.com/revi ... 80W_6.html


.

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Post by frankgehry » Mon Apr 10, 2006 6:26 am

[size=75]
[color=#3366ff]e8400, Corsair XMS2-5400, Asus 8400GS, Gigabyte EP45-UD3R, Chenbro SR209/Nexus 120, T-Balancer, Enhance ENP-5150GH 500W, Seagate 7200.7 160MB [/color][/size][size=75][color=#cc0033](Retired: XP-120, FSP530-60GNA, Antec SP2.0 500W, Antec SLK3000B)[/color][/size]

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Post by dukla2000 » Mon Apr 10, 2006 10:16 am

monographix wrote:so in regards to what you were describing about efficiency what your thoughts would be reading those two reviews results :

http://www.extremeoverclocking.com/revi ... 0UB_7.html

http://www.extremeoverclocking.com/revi ... 80W_6.html.
Didn't read right through the reviews but seems there is not much in it with respect to efficiency based on those reviews.

I would guess with that rig you are never going to get 'silent' - too much cooling needed to sort out all the power. But the link frankgehry posted reminded me that those psu with a plain/single(/nasty) choke to sort passive PFC are a disaster area - they hum/buzz like a chainsaw. you may not hear it above your cooling fans, but ... According to ExtremeOverclocking (the link you posted) the Hiper has active PFC which, IMHO, is far better engineering from the "likelihood of silence" point of view. So on a quick scan my vote would definately go to the Hiper!
[size=75]2009/Oct: Jetway JNC81-LF * 4850e naked under fanless Xigmatek Apache * Antec mini Skeleton w/Nexus 120mm PWM fan * Delta 90W brick w/Skeleton DC-DC board * WD2500BEVT 250Gb blue[/size]

jaganath
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Post by jaganath » Mon Apr 10, 2006 10:23 am

psu with a plain/single(/nasty) choke to sort passive PFC are a disaster area - they hum/buzz like a chainsaw. you may not hear it above your cooling fans, but ... According to ExtremeOverclocking (the link you posted) the Hiper has active PFC which, IMHO, is far better engineering from the "likelihood of silence" point of view.
So a PSU with active PFC is less likely to have electrical humming and buzzing? If this is true then the case for active PFC becomes all the more compelling.

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Post by dukla2000 » Mon Apr 10, 2006 10:39 am

jaganath wrote:So a PSU with active PFC is less likely to have electrical humming and buzzing? If this is true then the case for active PFC becomes all the more compelling.
In my experience it is 100% correlation. 3 psu I have had with passive PFC have been a PITA - including one of which that was FSP. 2 (or 3) active PFC (2 of which are Seasonic) have been flawless.

It is mentioned a bit in other threads here, but it is not a commonly mentioned issue as till now the USA has not had any PFC and so have been spared the delights of cheapo/passive implementations :D
[size=75]2009/Oct: Jetway JNC81-LF * 4850e naked under fanless Xigmatek Apache * Antec mini Skeleton w/Nexus 120mm PWM fan * Delta 90W brick w/Skeleton DC-DC board * WD2500BEVT 250Gb blue[/size]

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Post by TomZ » Mon Apr 10, 2006 2:35 pm

dukla2000 wrote:In my experience it is 100% correlation. 3 psu I have had with passive PFC have been a PITA - including one of which that was FSP. 2 (or 3) active PFC (2 of which are Seasonic) have been flawless.
Buzzing could also be correlated to PSU quality, which in your case, might also be higher in your PFC supplies. This type of buzzing can be prevented with good soldering and gluing of the components likely to resonate, e.g., inductors. I don't see how this could be related specifically to PFC.
It is mentioned a bit in other threads here, but it is not a commonly mentioned issue as till now the <b>USA has not had any PFC</b> and so have been spared the delights of cheapo/passive implementations
I'm not sure what you mean. Are you saying that PFC supplies are not available in USA?

Anyway, usually you get what you pay for, quality-wise.

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Post by dukla2000 » Mon Apr 10, 2006 10:50 pm

TomZ wrote:Buzzing could also be correlated to PSU quality ...
true
TomZ wrote:I don't see how this could be related specifically to PFC.
In all 3 of my experience it was precisely the vibration of that nasty passive PFC choke that was causing the problem.
TomZ wrote:Are you saying that PFC supplies are not available in USA?
I believe they are fairly common now (hopefully someone else can comment - my instinct is perhaps approaching 50% of psu?), but 3 or 4 years ago they were very common in the EU (as required by legislation) and almost unheard of in the USA.
[size=75]2009/Oct: Jetway JNC81-LF * 4850e naked under fanless Xigmatek Apache * Antec mini Skeleton w/Nexus 120mm PWM fan * Delta 90W brick w/Skeleton DC-DC board * WD2500BEVT 250Gb blue[/size]

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Post by dhanson865 » Tue Apr 11, 2006 2:39 pm

PFC isn't required in USA. So we can get it but we don't have to deal with the middle ground.

Code: Select all

    US       International     Notes
----------------------------------------
No PFC        N/A              Cheapest
Passive PFC   Passive PFC      More Expensive but not the best
Active PFC    Active PFC       Best
Edit: Fixed the table above.

Given the options most US customers won't bother for the middle choice of passive PFC, its just not an attractive option.

Back in the day I bought a couple of super cheapo cases and got:

SH300WA8H which appears to be a single 80mm fan "super noise killer"

and

Deer DR-250ATX which also appears to be a single 80mm fan unit

somewhere along the way I had another ATX PS that I sold with an Athlon socket 7 setup.

I bought a more expensive case back in the day with a sparkle power supply FSP-300-60BTV

Then a couple of Antec cases with PP-303XP 300W and less than a year later the equivalent 350W model.

I'd be surprised if any of those had any sort of PFC but who knows maybe they do.

Finally I bought a Seasonic Super Tornado 400W (rev A3) and a S12-430W (revision A1). As far as I know the Seasonics are the only ones in my house that have PFC and they are both Active PFC and quiet/effecient as well.

I'll be getting a Seasonic S12 with the sleeved cables within the next few months or possibly one of the new "Energy +" models depending on when SPCR gets one reviewed and then I don't know what I'll do with the 2 antec and 2 super cheapo ATX power supplies I'll have laying around as spares.
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monographix
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Post by monographix » Thu May 04, 2006 5:27 am

Finaly i got the Hiper 480K Type-R ...
First impressions, silent (as i wanted it) but hot ... single 120 fan is spining but i cant trace any airflow ...

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Post by monographix » Tue May 23, 2006 1:20 am

.

Is it possible and an easy mod to reverse the PSU fan rotation direction?

.

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Post by JimX » Tue May 23, 2006 1:52 am

It is both possible and easy, but why heat up your case and void your warranty (provided there is a WVIR sticker)?

There is a penalty for quiet components and slow spinning fans: HEAT!
[size=59]1. WS: Zalman TNN500Af, Abit IP35 Pro, E6750, 7600GT + N6600, WD500AAKS
2. HTPC: P182, Asus P5E, E6400 Ninja Cu, 8600GTS, 3xWD500AAKS, 2xWD10EACS[/size]

monographix
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Post by monographix » Tue May 23, 2006 3:12 am

well from what i see it seems that the PSU fan is pushing hot air from inside the PSU to the CPU HSF / case contributing in a hot air built up inside the case exceeding the hot air exhalation capabilities of the case , and also i think that the air in the case around the CPU HSF is colder than the air inside the PSU so it might be more effective the PSU fan to suck air from the case / CPU HSF area into the PSU AND out of the PSU box / PC case .....

just a thought ... what do you think ?

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Post by JimX » Tue May 23, 2006 3:28 am

monographix wrote:well from what i see it seems that the PSU fan is pushing hot air from inside the PSU to the CPU HSF / case contributing in a hot air built up inside the case exceeding the hot air exhalation capabilities of the case
If that is the case, the PSU fan is turned the wrong way. If so, the fan brackets should be facing out the PSU. But I highly doubt it. My guess is that you don't feel the very low airflow going out of the PSU.

Which case do you have? Are the intakes very restricted?
[size=59]1. WS: Zalman TNN500Af, Abit IP35 Pro, E6750, 7600GT + N6600, WD500AAKS
2. HTPC: P182, Asus P5E, E6400 Ninja Cu, 8600GTS, 3xWD500AAKS, 2xWD10EACS[/size]

monographix
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Post by monographix » Tue May 23, 2006 3:45 am

the PSU has only one fan, an 120mm above the CPU. i am not very sure now if its sucking air from inside the case into the PSU. but theres no any sensible air stream on the back of the case / PSU but theres a sensible air flow under the PSU pushing outwards ....

The case is Kobian Mercury 115

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Post by jaganath » Tue May 23, 2006 5:11 am

theres no any sensible air stream on the back of the case / PSU but theres a sensible air flow under the PSU pushing outwards ....
Often, if the temperature of the air exiting the PSU is close to your body temperature, it is hard to detect because we mostly detect airflow by its cooling effect on the skin (evaporation of moisture). I'm not saying that's what's happening here, I'm just saying it's a possibility.

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Post by JimX » Tue May 23, 2006 5:21 am

Take a small piece of paper and tape its top side outside the PSU, in front of the exhaust grills (like the A/Cs in the old movies :D ). If the paper moves away, it's pushing air out. If not... :roll:
[size=59]1. WS: Zalman TNN500Af, Abit IP35 Pro, E6750, 7600GT + N6600, WD500AAKS
2. HTPC: P182, Asus P5E, E6400 Ninja Cu, 8600GTS, 3xWD500AAKS, 2xWD10EACS[/size]

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Post by monographix » Tue May 23, 2006 7:54 am

yeap common sense lol :) thanks guys :)

and how is the rotation reverse mod performed ?

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Post by JimX » Tue May 23, 2006 10:27 am

Er, open up the PSU and turn the fan around? :lol:

Shut down system, switch PSU switch to OFF, disconnect power cord, press Power ON switch once-twice to discharge capacitors, wait 1/2 hour, remove PSU from case, open up PSU, DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING INSIDE, unscrew fan, reverse fan, screw fan, install PSU in case, insert power cord, turn PSU switch to ON, start system, DONE!

Oops, all system temps are higher...:shock:

Shut down system, switch PSU switch to OFF, disconnect power cord, press Power ON switch once-twice to discharge capacitors, wait 1/2 hour, remove PSU from case, open up PSU, DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING INSIDE, unscrew fan, reverse fan, screw fan, install PSU in case, insert power cord, turn PSU switch to ON, start system, DONE!

Seriously, test the airflow first. Do the thing with the paper between CPU cooler and PSU. Smoke works too.
[size=59]1. WS: Zalman TNN500Af, Abit IP35 Pro, E6750, 7600GT + N6600, WD500AAKS
2. HTPC: P182, Asus P5E, E6400 Ninja Cu, 8600GTS, 3xWD500AAKS, 2xWD10EACS[/size]

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Post by monographix » Wed May 24, 2006 4:03 am

LOL LOL :D

well, tried a small piece of paper tissue on the back and since it wasnt stuck on the PSU grills i guess that means that there wasnt air sucked from there but probably blown outwards .....

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