This roundup covers ten power supply units (PSUs) from the well-respected Chieftec or, to be exact, selling under the Chieftec brand. The number of products sounds impressive but these PSUs are actually based on three platforms only. Therefore I will discuss them in three groups.
The first group includes the 400W, 450W and 500W models currently shipped together with Chieftec system cases. The second group consists of Turbo Power series PSUs that not only have higher wattage ratings but also sell as boxed products separately from system cases. And finally, the Super Power series includes the highest-wattage power supplies from Chieftec.
Click the following link for a description of our testing methodology and equipment and a brief explanation of what the specified and tested parameters of power supplies mean: X-bit Labs Presents: Power Supply Units Testing Methodology In-Depth. If you feel overwhelmed with the numbers and terms this review abounds in, check out an appropriate section of the mentioned article for explanation.
You can also go to our Cooling/PSU section to check out reviews of other PSU models we have tested in our labs.
Chieftec GPS-400AA-101A, GPS-450AA-101A, GPS-500AB-A
I will begin by discussing the power supplies you can find in Chieftec’s system cases. Currently, these models range in wattage from 400 through 500 watts. Although the 500W model has a different suffix than the other two, there are more similarities than differences between them.
The actual maker of these PSUs is Delta Electronics. Its “native” products have the same names.
The first two models differ with the labels only. Each has a bare steel housing and is cooled with a 120mm fan.
The senior model can be easily confused with the junior ones: the external difference boils down to the use of a highlighted on/off switch and somewhat different positioning of the fan.
The three power supplies are all based on the same platform. It is even hard to distinguish between the 400W and 450W models by their innards because most of their components are identical.
This is a perfectly typical design of a modern inexpensive power supply. You can see an active PFC choke on the right, next to the black pot of a high-voltage capacitor. A small additional card is installed at the edge of the main PCB – it carries a PFC controller. Power semiconductor components (inverter’s transistors and rectifier’s diodes) are placed on two aluminum heatsinks of a rather modest size. Two toroidal chokes of the output filter can be seen on the left. It means that the PSU has joint voltage regulation. Otherwise, there would be three chokes. A card with a fan speed controller and overload protection circuitry is on the far left and obscured by wires.
The difference between the 400W and 450W units is in the ratings of their capacitors. They have 270µF and 330µF capacitors, respectively, at the input.
I can find no fault with the quality of assembly. Everything is neat and tidy here. Large components are all fastened with drops of white glue which prevents them from moving about during transportation or usage.
The senior model differs but slightly from the other two. Its heatsinks are larger and there is now a small new heatsink on the diode bridge (in the top right of the photo). The fan controller card on the right is different, too. You will see shortly if this makes any practical difference.