FSP Twins 500W ATX Redundant Power Supply Review @ [H]

FrgMstr

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FSP Twins 500W ATX Redundant Power Supply Review - Redundant computer power supplies have been a fixture in the enterprise server market since failover hardware solutions were first conceived to deal with contingency planning and system disaster recovery. FSP has now brought its Twins solution to the enthusiast market, and FSP have done it quite well.
 
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jardows

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I appreciate the work going into this review, and the honest conclusion. It can't be easy to quantify how much a value a product like this is, when almost everything else you have been looking at is quite different!

Paul, I loved the reference to the truck nutz! Maybe it's just me, but I have this nearly uncontrollable urge when I walk past one of those in a parking lot to give them a swift kick!
 

rgMekanic

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Awesome review as always, I just don't see where this product fits tho, especially at the price point they are asking. Anyone in need of a redundant PSU, could easily get a 2u or 3u chassis with redundant supplies for less than the asking price of this fella, and probably get more SATA connectors or a backplane to boot.
 
D

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Dunno bout ya'll but I think thats a sexy looking psu.

Probably just the fact that its something different from the norm.
 

Mugato

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Awesome review as always, I just don't see where this product fits tho, especially at the price point they are asking. Anyone in need of a redundant PSU, could easily get a 2u or 3u chassis with redundant supplies for less than the asking price of this fella, and probably get more SATA connectors or a backplane to boot.

Not true at all. Every single one of our production machines uses a PC, with a PS...a half to an hour of downtime costs us anywhere from 1000-5000 USD. Per machine. I have been waiting for something like this that is cost effective forever! I have UPS on the machines, but that only let's you shut down safely, and not on the week nights or week ends. These are absolutely going on my budget this year.
 

Quartz-1

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Your paragraph on the noise issue was delicious! I do wonder if you missed a trick by not comparing it with the TFX PSUs used in Shuttle's XPCs (also made by FSP, by the way).

Can I suggest an improvement for page 3? You write

In this image, you can see where the sleeving on one of the cables has been completely cut through by the housing on the unit.

Perhaps it's my eyesight but the damage is very hard to spot on the thumbnail picture. So perhaps you could change the text to

Open the thumbnail above and you will see that the sleeving...

You might also highlight the damage with a red circle.
 

whateverer

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Yeah, just because big companies use large quantities of rack-mount hardware doesn't mean there isn't room for this.

Even the biggest companies have smaller do-it-yourself departments (using whatever PC is available for a server/remote), and lot of smaller companies have a whole hodgepodge of towers in their server rooms. You could make the most important pieces of that hodgepodge way more reliable with just $400 .
 

Kelter

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Not true at all. Every single one of our production machines uses a PC, with a PS...a half to an hour of downtime costs us anywhere from 1000-5000 USD. Per machine. I have been waiting for something like this that is cost effective forever! I have UPS on the machines, but that only let's you shut down safely, and not on the week nights or week ends. These are absolutely going on my budget this year.

Crazy.. any reason you guys aren't on enterprise servers already with that kind of revenue loss? Specialty boards that only work on some desktop PC? One of my old workplaces many many years ago calculated a $30 mill revenue loss for a 30 min outage we experienced. After that incident, we went to triple geo redundancy. This was on top of the already four nines at a single site.

Anyways, that was in the retail sector and so cost is something that finance plays around with a lot. Nowadays I've been more in SaaS companies, but we have SLAs with customers which obviously have penalties if you violate them, but still spend the time calculating out total site availability so we can define our SLAs.

As for these power supplies, suppose it fills a specific market segment. Just seems a little counter intuitive in that most redundant power supplied systems would be in a datacenter with multiple circuits for redundancy. A PC generally isn't in a data center, so your power cabling to two physically different circuits would be a mess. In my office, good luck with that, whole rows of cubes share single circuits. Does save you though if one power supply were to fail though.
 

andrewaggb

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It's interesting, but it's more expensive that I'd like.

Could they build dual-300W supplies for half the price?

Or build 2 separate 300W supplies in a single enclosure with a single power cable that 'looks' like one supply and fails over internally if the first fails but it's not swappable or anything like that. For 1/4 the price? (You could schedule downtime/replacement of the entire ps if the first half dies).
 

[Spectre]

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It's interesting, but it's more expensive that I'd like.

Could they build dual-300W supplies for half the price?

Or build 2 separate 300W supplies in a single enclosure with a single power cable that 'looks' like one supply and fails over internally if the first fails but it's not swappable or anything like that. For 1/4 the price? (You could schedule downtime/replacement of the entire ps if the first half dies).

No, the price does not scale linearly on this type of product. There is a floor cost for the overhead to produce a redundant unit that would still be there even if the unit was only a dual 300W unit, that makes any cost savings far less then 1/2 of the price.
 

Mugato

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Crazy.. any reason you guys aren't on enterprise servers already with that kind of revenue loss? Specialty boards that only work on some desktop PC? One of my old workplaces many many years ago calculated a $30 mill revenue loss for a 30 min outage we experienced. After that incident, we went to triple geo redundancy. This was on top of the already four nines at a single site.

Anyways, that was in the retail sector and so cost is something that finance plays around with a lot. Nowadays I've been more in SaaS companies, but we have SLAs with customers which obviously have penalties if you violate them, but still spend the time calculating out total site availability so we can define our SLAs.

As for these power supplies, suppose it fills a specific market segment. Just seems a little counter intuitive in that most redundant power supplied systems would be in a datacenter with multiple circuits for redundancy. A PC generally isn't in a data center, so your power cabling to two physically different circuits would be a mess. In my office, good luck with that, whole rows of cubes share single circuits. Does save you though if one power supply were to fail though.

Yes, specialty boards that only work in desktop PC's, and it's not just about one machine, it affects the entire line. One break and the whole thing shuts down.

Pick-n-place machines, AOI machines, stencil printers, Xray machines, dispensing equipment, selective solder. Most of these run on higher end PC's and use controller boards. Maybe the multimillion dollar Fuji's use rack mount stuff, I haven't looked. We are an SMB who focus on medium size orders with high complexity.
 

FrgMstr

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Question:

So this unit was loud, but I couldn't find a dB measurement in the write-up.

Can anyone provide a qualitative sense of how loud it is?

I mean, if I have one of these running in the basement with the door closed, will I hear it through the floor boards in the room above (or even two stories up) like with my HP ProLiant DL180 G6 Dreamliner server?

Much obliged.
Page 5 labeled NOISE.

We do not use dB measurements in our testing environment because it is beyond our resources to do this properly due to the sound profile of the load testing equipment.
 

FrgMstr

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I understand the reason.

Just trying to get an understanding of how loud loud is.

I mean, it could be 2, 3, 4 or even 6 times louder than a typical desktop PSU and this wouldn't matter in the slightest for separate room use.

If the thing is over 100db like my HP 2U server with it's 8x 18k RPM spinning at full speed, then you can hear it in my bedroom two floors up with all the doors closed :p
You would likely be better off bringing Paul_Johnson into the conversation since he wrote the review and did the testing. :)
 
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