Articles: Cases/PSU

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In this article I am going to test eight new power supplies that have one thing in common. They are all high-wattage boxed models, 400W and higher, that are meant to be sold in retail right into the hands of the end-users. To be exact, there are tests of nine units in this review because I retested the Foxconn WinFast FA-550A model covered in a previous article. The reasons will be explained below.

Enermax Noisetaker EG495AX-VE(W) (485W)

Lacking any decorations like LEDs, intricately-shaped fan grids, etc., the Noisetaker EG495AX-VE still looks pretty enough, mainly due to the coloring of the case. The photograph can’t convey it in full, but the PSU is not merely violet. Tiny spangles were added into the paint and they shimmer in light very beautifully.

The design of the PSU is standard otherwise. Well, Enermax is not counted among experimenting firms and prefers to focus on the electrical parameters of a PSU rather than on its outward appearance. Take note, however, of the fan speed control knob near the On/Off switch and the filter on the PSU’s output:

It is an ordinary ferrite ring inside a plastic casing. This filter doesn’t play any crucial part in minimizing the voltage ripple on the PSU’s output, yet it does suppress some high-frequency noise. You may have seen this solution already. For example, a ferrite ring is also put on the output cables of the FSP FSP460-60PFN unit. The graphics card cable of some power supplies from OCZ wears such a ring with a couple of capacitors, too.

The internal design is standard, following the classic circuit schematic with group voltage regulation and active power factor correction. There is nothing here I could find any fault with. Everything is neat and tidy.

This model has the typical characteristics of an ATX12V 2.0 power supply (this industry standard doesn’t describe models with an output power of over 400W, so you have to extrapolate). The +12V rail is “virtually” divided in two as is done in the absolute majority of new PC power supplies. In other words, there is only one power rail inside the power supply and its load current is up to 32A, but there are two separate current limiters, 18A each, set up on the PSU’s output. I already wrote in my reviews about the reasons why the sum of the max currents on the 12V1 and 12V2 rails is bigger than the total current on the +12V rail: this power rail is split in two only to comply with the EN-60950 safety regulation which states that the maximum output power on user-accessible contacts must not exceed 240VA (that is, the current must not be higher than 20A at 12V voltage; the protection is set at 18A for a small safety margin). Of course, it is logical to set the current limit higher for each of the 12V rails, i.e. at 18A, to provide more flexibility in load distribution across the PSU’s outputs.

This power supply offers you the following cables and connectors:

  • Mainboard cable with a 24-pin connector (with a detachable 4-pin part), 58cm long
  • ATX12V cable with a 4-pin connector, 57cm long
  • Graphics card cable with a 6-pin connector, 57cm long
  • Two cables with two Molex connectors and one mini-plug for the floppy drive (45cm from the PSU to the first connector and 13cm more to each next connector)
  • One cable with three Molex connectors (63cm from the PSU to the first connector and 13cm more to each next connector)
  • Two cables with two SATA power connectors on each, 48cm from the PSU to the first plug and 15cm more to the next connector
  • 80mm fan’s tachometer cable which allows controlling the fan speed through the mainboard’s monitoring tools
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