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HERETIC
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QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 12:09 am

QUALITY-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

After totally disagreeing with Cyril on his choice of budget PSU.
I decided to start this post-
A few years ago trying to find a quality low power PSU
at a budget price was not possible-quality components cost money.
There was Seasonic’s X series but it was expensive.
Then came the G series.

Look at a basic/midrange setup-
4 core i5 CPU-8GB Ram-SSD-2TB drive-ODD-A few fans-with say a R9-270X or GTX960.
Power usage of around 180 to 200 Watts during gaming hits the sweet spot for efficiency
on a Seasonic G360 PSU.
Only downside you’d need a Molex to PCI-E as G360 only has one PCI-E 6 pin cable.
Even a GTX970 would only up the power to around 250 Watts-Thro I’d recommend going
up to a G450 then.
For anyone wanting to build a office box or small server without GPU there are cheaper OEM versions,
SSP-350GT is one, but be warned cables are limited-does NOT come with PCI-E cable.

There are quite a few variants of the G450 out there some modular some not,
And can sometimes be cheaper than Seasonic.

There are lot's of companies building great 700 to 1KWatt PSU's but they tend to cheap out too much
on their lower power units..........
Anyone know of any great low power PSU's please add........
Please avoid group regulated-Yesterdays child...................
And definitely NO Chinese capacitors....
 
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 12:40 am

I've picked up maybe half a dozen Seasonic SS 350ET units from eBay for $15-$18 over the last couple years, They work great and I'd trust an 80Plus Seasonic used for an undetermined amount of time over a brand new generic unit any day. I have one of these powering the HTPC in my sig and it runs beautifully with no squealing or signs of stress. Two 40W 3Ghz Xeons (similar to C2D E8400s, but only 40W TDP), 8GB of DDR2, Radeon 7750, 500GB 7200RPM WD Blue, Blu-Ray drive and some fans. I have another nearly identical system and just for kicks I tried it with an old Sparkle GTS 250 "green" low-profile card and it seemed to run fine with that as well, though I had to add a PCI-E power adapter since the PSU doesn't have one.

They seem to be easy to find for under $30. Mostly under $20.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 5:39 am

HERETIC wrote:
There are lot's of companies building great 700 to 1KWatt PSU's but they tend to cheap out too much
on their lower power units..........
...
Please avoid group regulated-Yesterdays child...................

Just out of curiosity, do the above bits pretty much sum up your objections to the Corsair?

I have had good results with the CX series, but the systems they are in are not demanding in terms of power draw; the PSUs are not heavily loaded. I still think they're reasonable for the money, especially if you get them on sale.
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HERETIC
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 7:10 am

To answer JUST BREW IT's question-
I think PSU is the most important part of a build...give your components power as clean as possible................
The old saying "A chain is only as strong as the weakest link".
The weakest link in PSU's are electrolytic capacitors-They dry out and pop...............
Good quality Japanese are generally good for several years-where some of the cheap Chinese are lucky to last two.

The main reason for this post is-a few years ago finding a quality low power PSU at an affordable price was hard....
Today if your doing a build that costs several hundred dollars-Spending a extra $20 to $30 on a quality PSU is a no brainer...

I have a group regulated Corsair 450 Watt PSU (seasonic built) in another box that's over 5 years old-
would i buy same if available today-NO,there's much better available....................................
 
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 8:07 am

Your subject line nearly made me report this thread. Can you change it so it doesn't look so spammy?
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 8:41 am

bthylafh wrote:
Your subject line nearly made me report this thread. Can you change it so it doesn't look so spammy?

I figured it was SSK. 8)
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 8:45 am

HERETIC wrote:
Good quality Japanese are generally good for several years-where some of the cheap Chinese are lucky to last two.

This was indeed true ~10 years ago. The vast majority of Chinese caps aren't *that* bad any more.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:04 am

I've had one Corsair CX430 die in a system I built (gracefully though, not a puff of smoke). That experience made me realize that although the CX430 may be a decent power supply at the unbeatable price of $20 after MIR (regularly on sale), I'm perfectly fine paying an extra $10 for the CS450M which is both 80 Plus Gold rated AND modular for $27-$30 after MIR (on sale roughly once every other month). The CS450M is now my go-to for low-budget builds (although only one 6+2 pin PCIe power cable). I understand the (supposed) benefits of Japanese caps, but that's just another example of "you get what you pay for." If you want the highest quality components, you've got to pay more, that's business 101. Should you buy a Jaguar if a Toyota can get you to the grocery store just as well?

Corsair CS450M review and a little more detailed review from the CS650M (assumedly equal). No MOV, but from my understanding, you can circumvent this by simply plugging the power supply into a surge protector (can someone clarify?) which most computers are/should be IMO. In my eyes, once you've got a (legitimate) 80 Plus Gold PSU, you're pretty well guaranteed that the quality is there, then all you have to look at is fan noise levels.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:22 am

The problem that happens with "affordable" is that at that level, a vendor may change the OEM of the power supply at any time or modify its specs.

For example, (citing Hardware Secrets):
"The Corsair CX430 V2 is internally identical to the CX430, with the exception of the active PFC transistors and the +12v rectifiers, which were upgraded."

The above is an example of improvement. However, this isn't what you get all the time. This makes it hard to settle on any one model of power supply at the budget end for longer than a modest period of time, as the specs may change without warning. It's almost easier to say who to avoid than who to choose for sure. Raidmax. Coolmax. Diablotek. Any house brand your big-box local store sells (e.g., Best Buy's RocketFish).

In the end, it depends on your application. If you're building your favorite gaming rig, do you really want to choose nice components and then go "I don't have budget left, I'll stick a $40-50 power supply in"? I still see so many message threads on boards of people who want to do this; it's like wanting to buy a fancy muscle car and then saying "But I only have enough money for you to stick a Geo Metro engine in it, can you do that?"

When I looked at a new power supply for my wife's system, I found nothing I'd want until I paid about $80 (Seasonic G-Series modular). In the end, I found a liquidator selling brand-new Seasonic Platinum 1000w supplies on eBay for $120 or best offer; I offered $100 and they took it. It went in mine and she has my X750 Gold now. Both are overkill, but I think I got the best deal, considering the SS-1000 is normally a $220 power supply from NewEgg.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:23 am

DPete27 wrote:
No MOV, but from my understanding, you can circumvent this by simply plugging the power supply into a surge protector (can someone clarify?) which most computers are/should be IMO.

You really ought to use external surge protection regardless. MOVs can only absorb a finite number of surges before they degrade, and periodically replacing an external surge strip is less hassle than replacing your PSU. IMO the internal MOVs (if any) should be viewed as extra insurance, not a first-line defense.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 10:44 am

HERETIC wrote:
I have a group regulated Corsair 450 Watt PSU (seasonic built) in another box that's over 5 years old-
would i buy same if available today-NO,there's much better available....................................

What is this "group regulated" thing that you keep repeating? Is there a difference between that and a "vanilla" Corsair unit? :oops:
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 11:00 am

Flying Fox wrote:
HERETIC wrote:
I have a group regulated Corsair 450 Watt PSU (seasonic built) in another box that's over 5 years old-
would i buy same if available today-NO,there's much better available....................................

What is this "group regulated" thing that you keep repeating? Is there a difference between that and a "vanilla" Corsair unit? :oops:

A group regulated PSU does not have a separate independent feedback loop for each rail. The +12V and +5V are regulated together, which can lead to out-of-tolerance voltages under crossload conditions. E.g., if the +12V rail is asked to supply close to its rated maximum current, the power controller increases the PWM duty cycle to keep the +12V rail from sagging too much; but if the +5V rail is lightly loaded, this can cause the +5V rail to go out of spec to the high side.

Better PSUs have independent feedback loops and can adjust PWM duty cycle for each rail independently, to more accurately compensate for the load on each rail.

The Corsair CX (Builder Series) are group regulated.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 11:15 am

just brew it! wrote:
Flying Fox wrote:
HERETIC wrote:
I have a group regulated Corsair 450 Watt PSU (seasonic built) in another box that's over 5 years old-
would i buy same if available today-NO,there's much better available....................................

What is this "group regulated" thing that you keep repeating? Is there a difference between that and a "vanilla" Corsair unit? :oops:

A group regulated PSU does not have a separate independent feedback loop for each rail. The +12V and +5V are regulated together, which can lead to out-of-tolerance voltages under crossload conditions. E.g., if the +12V rail is asked to supply close to its rated maximum current, the power controller increases the PWM duty cycle to keep the +12V rail from sagging too much; but if the +5V rail is lightly loaded, this can cause the +5V rail to go out of spec to the high side.

Better PSUs have independent feedback loops and can adjust PWM duty cycle for each rail independently, to more accurately compensate for the load on each rail.

The Corsair CX (Builder Series) are group regulated.

Thanks JBI, and I thought it has something to do with corporate governance/structure. :oops:
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 11:25 am

So jbi's explanation probably explains this, which does not bode well for my previous statement of confidence: http://www.hardocp.com/article/2015/01/ ... Svt6vnF98E

Once they loaded it to close to the 12v rail's max (63 amps max, they loaded it to 60) it would fail.
Last edited by derFunkenstein on Mon Apr 13, 2015 11:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 11:26 am

I recently bought this power supply. It's as affordable as they come, and it works for my VIA C3. That's high enough quality for me.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6817170014
 
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 11:29 am

Takeshi7 wrote:
I recently bought this power supply. It's as affordable as they come, and it works for my VIA C3. That's high enough quality for me.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6817170014

Eeeegh!!! (hastily brushes tongue with hands, throws up pointer fingers in cross) That PSU has no place in this thread, even if it is powering a 2001-era machine.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 11:34 am

derFunkenstein wrote:
So jbi's explanation probably explains this, which does not bode well for my previous statement of confidence: http://www.hardocp.com/article/2015/01/ ... Svt6vnF98E

Once they loaded it to close to the 12v rail's max (63 amps max, they loaded it to 60) it would fail.

Actually, I may have mis-spoken. I think it is only the lower wattage CX PSUs which are group regulated.

The voltages in that linked review of the CX750 don't seem to indicate group regulated behavior (5V rail stays close to nominal even when they start loading up the +12V). Not being able to supply the rated amount of power is definitely a black eye though!
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 11:56 am

The modular version crapped the bed, too. Looks like it's only rated for full power at 30C, which as the jonnyguru review points out is low since you have to take care. I haven't dug in too much, but that's probably why Hard OCP's unit powered down, too - I'm sure both of them are rated for low temps.

http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?na ... y&reid=416
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 12:20 pm

Takeshi7 wrote:
I recently bought this power supply. It's as affordable as they come, and it works for my VIA C3. That's high enough quality for me.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6817170014

Let's be honest here: eight AA batteries in series would be fine for a VIA C3 build.

(Ok, of course not really. Also, you're really running a C3? I've never actually heard of anyone using one in the wild.)
 
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 12:29 pm

Chuckaluphagus wrote:
Takeshi7 wrote:
I recently bought this power supply. It's as affordable as they come, and it works for my VIA C3. That's high enough quality for me.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6817170014

Let's be honest here: eight AA batteries in series would be fine for a VIA C3 build.

(Ok, of course not really. Also, you're really running a C3? I've never actually heard of anyone using one in the wild.)


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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 1:37 pm

just brew it! wrote:
HERETIC wrote:
Good quality Japanese are generally good for several years-where some of the cheap Chinese are lucky to last two.

This was indeed true ~10 years ago. The vast majority of Chinese caps aren't *that* bad any more.


Exactly, Taiwan and Chinese and manufacturers have been increasingly getting better and can find them on mid-high end PSU's when used in secondary locations or lower temp.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 6:11 pm

4 Years ago when I was building my current 2600k gaming rig I was planning on overclocking and running SLI GTX 560TI graphics cards because at the time the 2 560TI's were a good bit cheaper than the top of the line GTX 580 but in most cases outperformed the GTX580.

My main PSU review site was Johnny Guru and he rated my Corsair TX850 as awesome and the price was fantastic at the time of my build so I pulled the trigger on it.

I also believe wholeheartedly that having as good bit of PSU power overhead is much better then running a PSU close to its rated power limit. I feel the benefits of having the extra power overhead leads to a longer lasting products, and I mean every component in your system that draws any considerable amount of power will last longer if it never has voltage droop or excessive ripple in the power delivery to the motherboard, CPU, and GPU's. That is my opinion on the matter and considering I have never had one of my builds have a PSU or part fail besides a fan here and there I have to stick to this being my humble opinion on the matter and will continue to stick to my guns and do it with every build I do if it is for me or a friend or family member.

Plus it worked out great since I replaced my GTX 560TI's with 2GTX 770 classified that draw even more power than the 560's....but it still leaves me with a nice power cushion since the TX850 PSU was not heavily loaded over the 3 years before I installed the 770's
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 6:32 pm

FWIW, the Corsair 520HX I purchased mid-2007 ran without a bleep 24/7/365 pushing a C2D 6600 @ 3.2 until I rebuilt the box last month. I would have kept it if its modularity was not so Molex-focused, but it was from 2007 and lacking in modern PCIe plugs.

I'm holding out on new GFX until the new spring styles are out, so at best I'm pulling 120W from my HX750i. It's more than I need, but it's the entry level to Corsair Link, so that's where I went.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 7:03 pm

Captain Ned wrote:
FWIW, the Corsair 520HX I purchased mid-2007 ran without a bleep 24/7/365 pushing a C2D 6600 @ 3.2 until I rebuilt the box last month. I would have kept it if its modularity was not so Molex-focused, but it was from 2007 and lacking in modern PCIe plugs.

I'm holding out on new GFX until the new spring styles are out, so at best I'm pulling 120W from my HX750i. It's more than I need, but it's the entry level to Corsair Link, so that's where I went.


Had that PSU for many years, loved it. Then one day it decided to go in a rather interesting fashion by a bright blue flash, loud pop/then a band as parts rattled around then rancid smoke. Corsair wanted it back for analysis as I imagined they didn't normally go like that, and replaced it with a HX650! Still daily use a Corsair CX 400 (Seasonic) from 08-09 in my main system. Great PSU brand!
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 7:27 pm

Hi Bthylafh,
Glad the heading got your attention-Seems lot of others not reading it.
Post is getting overrun with 500 to 1KWatt PSU's........................
 
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 7:38 pm

Heh. I liked the Antec Earthwatts 380W p/s I had years ago; it was quality and efficient, and the current version costs $45 at Newegg. It's only got a single PCIe 6-pin cable, but honestly that's to be expected in a lower-power PS. Most people are going to use a beefier power supply with anything needing more auxiliary power.

The only reason I'm not using it anymore is because my older one had a 20-pin main and I upgraded to a 24-pin motherboard.

And your subject line still looks like a spambot's output, largely because it's in ALL CAPS.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 8:52 pm

Define 'affordable', one usually 'pays' for quality. I think my Seasonic 460W fanless platinum was about $135 w/o tax when I bought it.

As for low power psu's I agree, it would be nice if there were more 300W, 350W, and 400W good gold and platinum units available.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:48 pm

anotherengineer wrote:
Define 'affordable', one usually 'pays' for quality. I think my Seasonic 460W fanless platinum was about $135 w/o tax when I bought it.

As for low power psu's I agree, it would be nice if there were more 300W, 350W, and 400W good gold and platinum units available.


I actually have not seen really much on low wattage platinum units. The official list does not have many listed.
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Wed Apr 15, 2015 9:14 am

anotherengineer wrote-
"Define 'affordable', one usually 'pays' for quality. I think my Seasonic 460W fanless platinum was about $135 w/o tax when I bought it."

Kind of my whole point-Some will find top end PSU's to expensive-
Some will want to power their $200 CPU and $300 GPU with a craptastic group regulated-Chinese capacitor $35 PSU...

I think Seasonic G series is quality at a affordable price-not as good as their top end gear but far superior to the
low quality others have out there.........................................
 
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Re: QUALITY AFFORDABLE-LOW POWER-POWER SUPPLIES

Wed Apr 15, 2015 10:31 am

I think probably part of my problem now is that I tend to want modular power supplies for my builds.

If I didn't, I could go with the PSU I bought the last time for the wife's system, an Antec Neo Eco 520C. It's a little older Seasonic design (I think it's the S12II platform), serviceable, and $64.99 at NewEgg right now. However, since it's not modular, I have to find a place to stuff all of the cables. Still, if you don't need modular, it's about as bargain as you'll get for something that's pretty solid.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6817371030
i7-4790K @4.2GHz, GIGABYTE Z97X-UD5H-BK, 32GB GSkill RipJaws PC1866
Corsair 650D, Seasonic 1Kw Platinum PSU
Crucial M4 512GB, WD Raptor 600GB, WD Black 1TB, NEC 7200 DVDRW
Gigabyte GTX 1070 Founders Ed., X-Fi Titanium, Dell 2408WFP-HC

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