Recommend a PS for my build please

ghart999

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Jul 30, 2004
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Hi all.

Doing a new build and need a PS

Intel E7200
Asus P5Q-Pro
ATI HD4850
4GB Ram
3 500GB SATA drives

Will probably do some minor OCing. I mean minor.

Based on this, how many watts and what supply might you recommend?

Modular is nice, but not necessary especially is much more cost.

Thanks.
 

HighTest

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I love the modular supply provided by Zalman, extremely stable and very quite.

Zalman ZM600-HP is real cheap at newegg now as well: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817379003&Tpk=ZM600

$114.99

This was provided awesome reviews on HardwareSecrets, and others.

http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=Story&reid=30
http://www.tweaknews.net/reviews/zm600hp/
http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/402

Video Review from 3dGameMan here: http://www.3dgameman.com/content/view/8901/103/

What's interesting is that Hardware Secrets finds that it's actually the same quality components used in a competing 700W powersupply from OCZ, the GameXstream 700w, but with the heatpiping had been added for Zalman.

Whatever the result, the rails are supper solid, so it'd be good even for overclocking, but more than sufficient for the rig you show above. Remember, quality power is important, because speinding $$$ on the other system components and then only giving second thought to the PSU is usually the reasons for problems in stability and other intermittant and difficult to pinpoint problems.

All in all, I own this PSU and have been very pleased with the results. I think you would too.
 

ghart999

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Is it possible to get by with a less pricey supply? These are both quite expensive. Or can I assume that all $60-$80 600W power supplies are crap?
 
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yes and yes.

This could not be farther from the truth.

This PSU (linked below), for example, lacks features and has fewer connectors. It is, however, essentially a re-branded FSP power supply. Even though it is rated at 600W, it was tested at 729W (source: http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/451). The platform it was designed on is also utilized by many higher end power supplies. It is really risky buying cheaper PSUs, but if you do your research, you'll be just fine.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341010
 

ghart999

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This could not be farther from the truth.

This PSU (linked below), for example, lacks features and has fewer connectors. It is, however, essentially a re-branded FSP power supply. Even though it is rated at 600W, it was tested at 729W (source: http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/451). The platform it was designed on is also utilized by many higher end power supplies. It is really risky buying cheaper PSUs, but if you do your research, you'll be just fine.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341010

Nice one. Thanks. Great for the price along with rebate.

When the PS says its nVidia SLI ready it just means it has 2 PCI-E 6-pin connectors right? I mean it will still work with a crossfire setup as well right?
 

ghart999

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Thanks.

What about the Antec Neo Power 500 ATX12V 500W Power Supply. Only $50 at buy.com and seems like a nice unit.
 

[Spectre]

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This could not be farther from the truth.

This PSU (linked below), for example, lacks features and has fewer connectors. It is, however, essentially a re-branded FSP power supply. Even though it is rated at 600W, it was tested at 729W (source: http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/451). The platform it was designed on is also utilized by many higher end power supplies. It is really risky buying cheaper PSUs, but if you do your research, you'll be just fine.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341010

It's still an Epsilon.
 

magoo

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600Watts, 80% efficiency, peak watts = 480. (if you can guarantee 80%)

The 729 is the Alternating Current pulled at the wall to generate 600Watts on the PSU.

So......you need to calculate the current draw of you components.

If you look here:http://www.hardocp.com/article.html?art=MTUzMSw5LCxoZW50aHVzaWFzdA==
a typical 4850 system pulled 360watts. Only leaves you 120 Watts overhead.

360/480= 75%.......
The question is: do you want to run your $60 PSU at 75% of its peak??? Or buy something that will have a bit more overhead???? I would not trust that PSU to run all that gear, but that's just me. If you added a second 4850 later......fail and fire.;)
 

Dangman

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It's still an Epsilon.

QFT.

That SteathXStream is based off the FSP Epsilon platform which has been shown to exhibit out of spec ripple, or voltage fluctuations, at high loads that may damange your PC over time Granted you may not reach such high loads but why buy a PSU that could potentially kill your system? or why buy a PSU when there are better PSUs for not much more in price:
Corsair 550VX 550W PSU - $84

The Corsair 550VX is more than enough for your system.
 
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QFT.

That SteathXStream is based off the FSP Epsilon platform which has been shown to exhibit out of spec ripple, or voltage fluctuations, at high loads that may damange your PC over time Granted you may not reach such high loads but why buy a PSU that could potentially kill your system? or why buy a PSU when there are better PSUs for not much more in price:
Corsair 550VX 550W PSU - $84

The Corsair 550VX is more than enough for your system.

Actually, that's not true at all. It's ripple may be higher at large loads, but it's certainly not out of spec. The claims about it damaging your system are quite exaggerated.

If you'd look at the the ATX power supply design guide, you'd see that it's well within the spec of 120mVDC peak to peak.
http://www.formfactors.org/developer/specs/ATX12V PSDG2.01.pdf

I've had an epsilon PSU running in a desktop for over a year now without any problems. My brother bought the exact model we are discussing when it had a rebate in the past, and hasn't had any problems.
 
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Messages
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600Watts, 80% efficiency, peak watts = 480. (if you can guarantee 80%)

The 729 is the Alternating Current pulled at the wall to generate 600Watts on the PSU.

So......you need to calculate the current draw of you components.

If you look here:http://www.hardocp.com/article.html?art=MTUzMSw5LCxoZW50aHVzaWFzdA==
a typical 4850 system pulled 360watts. Only leaves you 120 Watts overhead.

360/480= 75%.......
The question is: do you want to run your $60 PSU at 75% of its peak??? Or buy something that will have a bit more overhead???? I would not trust that PSU to run all that gear, but that's just me. If you added a second 4850 later......fail and fire.;)

You are incorrect as well. If you read the very article you linked, a single 4850 has 295W at full load (from the wall). In crossfire, the 4850 is 365W. That sounds feasible to me. Plus, you want to have enough stress on your PSU to benefit from the max efficiency of the power supply.

EDIT: Also, in the review it says the power supply maintained ~80% efficiency at 729W. So 729 * .792 = 577.4W
 

Dangman

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I wasn't talking about the StealthXStream specifically. I was talking about the Epsilon platform itself.

The claims about it damaging your system are quite exaggerated.
From this GameXStream Review:
JonnyGURU said:
What's wrong with too much ripple? Well, if the voltage fluctuates too erratically, it can over work other regulators used to provide Vcore to the CPU, GPU, etc.

In addition, it does take time for out of spec ripple to damage your PSU.

I've had an epsilon PSU running in a desktop for over a year now without any problems. My brother bought the exact model we are discussing when it had a rebate in the past, and hasn't had any problems.

More than likely you're not running both PSUs at high loads. If you check the GameXStream review above, you'll find this little quote:
JonnyGURU said:
A representative of OCZ did find my findings concerning and asked that I return the unit for an exchange. I did so, and in the interim I obtained an FSP Epsilon 600W. The 600W version of the power supply the OCZ GameXstream is based on. In testing that unit, I found a good deal of ripple as well. When a brand new GameXstream was finally returned to me, I immediately plugged it in and found the same results as the first sample.

Yes, the StealthXStream's ripple figures were well within specs.
 
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Thanks for clearing that up, Danny. The epsilon platform does have ripple problems at high loads, but as far as real world usage goes, I think it performs very well.

Plus, the PSU only costs 45 freakin bucks! That's pretty good for budget builders IMO.
 

[Spectre]

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Thanks for clearing that up, Danny. The epsilon platform does have ripple problems at high loads, but as far as real world usage goes, I think it performs very well.

Plus, the PSU only costs 45 freakin bucks! That's pretty good for budget builders IMO.

Well except it is group regulated and its rated at 25c. The platform is highly variable in its performance from branded unit to branded unit, revision torevision, and unit to unit.
 

Zero82z

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I suggest a Corsair VX450. It can be found for $50-60 after rebates, and is more than enough to handle that system. You'd be pulling probably 250W load tops while overclocked with a single 4850, and maybe another 100W on top of that with a second 4850 added, which is well within the unit's capabilities.

600Watts, 80% efficiency, peak watts = 480. (if you can guarantee 80%)

The 729 is the Alternating Current pulled at the wall to generate 600Watts on the PSU.

So......you need to calculate the current draw of you components.

If you look here:http://www.hardocp.com/article.html?art=MTUzMSw5LCxoZW50aHVzaWFzdA==
a typical 4850 system pulled 360watts. Only leaves you 120 Watts overhead.

360/480= 75%.......
The question is: do you want to run your $60 PSU at 75% of its peak??? Or buy something that will have a bit more overhead???? I would not trust that PSU to run all that gear, but that's just me. If you added a second 4850 later......fail and fire.;)

No offense, but your calculations are entirely wrong. The 729W is actually already the DC draw on the PSU, and the AC load was 920W as stated in the review. That notwithstanding, 80% efficiency doesn't mean that the unit can only cope with 80% of its rated load (we'd have a lot of shitty PSUs out there if that was the case). The efficiency rating is based on the relative loads between AC and DC draw, basically meaning that the actual DC load on a PSU would be around 80% of its AC draw assuming it's rated at 80%. Therefore, a 600W rated unit is actually supposed to be capable of putting out 600W of DC power, and at full load its AC draw would theoretically be around 750W (600 = 0.80*750).

Now, regarding the [H] link you posted, it actually states that the draw of a 4870 system, not a 4850 system, would be 360W. There are also a few other things wrong with your comments. The [H] test rig is hardly a "typical" system, as it includes a top of the line quad-core CPU (the OP is going with a budget dual-core), and several high-powered HDs. Also, the wattage you quoted was actually wall draw, and the actual DC draw is around 295W (assuming 82% efficiency). For a 4850 in that system, the number drops to 242W. Realistically, his system would draw quite a bit less power than that since it's using a slower dual-core. Let's go with a conservative estimate of 225W (likely higher than the actual number). 225W would be about 37.5% of a 600W PSU's rated output, which is hardly anything.

I'm not advocating the Epsilon platform here; however, misinformation is always bad regardless of whether or not it's actually in favour of a good argument. Please look over your reasoning before you make any more similar posts (so people like me don't have to go and debunk them ;)).
 

HighTest

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Not all epsilons are alike however. If you click on the JonnyGURU link for the Zalman review I had in my previous post, he's amazed at the stability of the rails. Obviously Zalman did have some design changes added to the secondary stage that cleaned up the ripple considerably. In fact when you read his summary, he had lots of PRO's and NO CON's.

Likewise, others could change the design of the FSP Epsilon on the secondary to also provide the clean up of the ripple. So it's important to not just discard all FSP Epsilon supplies out of hand.
 

[Spectre]

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Not all epsilons are alike however. If you click on the JonnyGURU link for the Zalman review I had in my previous post, he's amazed at the stability of the rails. Obviously Zalman did have some design changes added to the secondary stage that cleaned up the ripple considerably. In fact when you read his summary, he had lots of PRO's and NO CON's.

Likewise, others could change the design of the FSP Epsilon on the secondary to also provide the clean up of the ripple. So it's important to not just discard all FSP Epsilon supplies out of hand.

Ok, if that is your supposition what EXACTLY did they change?

I ask because I have seen a LOT of Epsilons, more than Jon during his review days as a matter of fact, and you know what you get wildly different results from sample to sample, revision to revision, and branded unit to branded unit. However, at the end of the day you are left with a lower end group regulated design rated at 25c with less than great components and features wildly differing output specifications for the same units that consequently have either ok voltage regulation or bad voltage regulation in addition to the ripple/noise issues that are inherent in the design. At the end of the day who knows which Epsilon you will get when you open the package.
 

HighTest

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Ok, if that is your supposition what EXACTLY did they change?

I ask because I have seen a LOT of Epsilons, more than Jon during his review days as a matter of fact, and you know what you get wildly different results from sample to sample, revision to revision, and branded unit to branded unit. However, at the end of the day you are left with a lower end group regulated design rated at 25c with less than great components and features wildly differing output specifications for the same units that consequently have either ok voltage regulation or bad voltage regulation in addition to the ripple/noise issues that are inherent in the design. At the end of the day who knows which Epsilon you will get when you open the package.

Guess I can't argue too much here, as I don't know "exactly" what was changed. All I can do if you'd like is to post each and every PSU review for the Zalman that I've found that show the same "super stable" rails. While it's possible each received a "golden sample" the diverse number of reviews should have had someone getting a poorer sample that would exhibit the same ripple problems of other Epsilons.

I do note that the supplies almost look identical. See the two URL's below for images from HardwareSecrets:

OCZ 700W: http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/fullimage.php?image=7126
Zalman ZM600: http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/fullimage.php?image=7127

It just may be the time of the parts order during asembly, but the second transformer looks slightly different (clearly Dash 2 B-5 on the Zalman shot, difficult to make out on OCZ). I can't tell the difference. Could it be that it's ramped down in the rated outputs to lower the ripple? After all one is 600W and the other is 700W even though they are identical.

However, my own experience my own personal supply has been extremely stable, even the last week when my abient home temperature has been 89 degrees F (may have to purchase an uber expensive AC soon, unlike my PC I'm having trouble handling the heat).

While they've been on the market for over a year, perhaps HardOCP can request a Zalman ZM600-HP and an ZM850-HP for review. There is a ZM750-HP, but it uses a different PSU maker and the results were not as good, so I recommend skipping that specific model.
 

[Spectre]

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Guess I can't argue too much here, as I don't know "exactly" what was changed. All I can do if you'd like is to post each and every PSU review for the Zalman that I've found that show the same "super stable" rails. While it's possible each received a "golden sample" the diverse number of reviews should have had someone getting a poorer sample that would exhibit the same ripple problems of other Epsilons.

Well of the people who could test that reliably report all the pertinent information there are only a handful like:

JG.com
PcPer.com
xbitlabs.com


The other "good" review I can find for it that comes close to being complete comes from SPCR and I think Nick has an error in his numbers because on this page:

http://www.silentpcreview.com/article688-page4.html

He says the peak ripple/noise values are 18.5mV but the v/div there is 50mV and the unit is clearly showing ~70mV on the one included screen shot.

However, my own experience my own personal supply has been extremely stable, even the last week when my abient home temperature has been 89 degrees F (may have to purchase an uber expensive AC soon, unlike my PC I'm having trouble handling the heat).

Ok and most Deer power supplies are stable most of the time.

While they've been on the market for over a year, perhaps HardOCP can request a Zalman ZM600-HP and an ZM850-HP for review. There is a ZM750-HP, but it uses a different PSU maker and the results were not as good, so I recommend skipping that specific model.

http://www.pcper.com/article.php?aid=592&type=expert&pid=1
 

HighTest

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Ok, if that is your supposition what EXACTLY did they change?

I ask because I have seen a LOT of Epsilons,

I've found it! Turns out that Zalman has a redesigned secondary stage, and added a number of capacitors in parallel to filter the 12V section. You can see this difference in the two PCPER.com shots taken from their perspective reviews.

Image from OCZ: http://www.pcper.com/image.php?aid=333&img=13-Inside_big.jpg

Image from Zalman: http://www.pcper.com/image.php?aid=327&img=16-Inside_big.jpg

For best effect, open each on a separate tab and alternate viewing back and forth between the two of them. You'll see the difference. Oklahoma Wolf on the jonnyGURU forum noticed this and the mention in the forum had me looking for the details. See http://jonnyguru.com/forums/showpost.php?p=4498&postcount=3

Oklahoma Wolf said:
In the Epsilon, the 12v output so far doesn't look to have a proper pi filter on it. It has the coil and the output caps, but not the input cap that I have found. Unless the input cap is the wee little 1000uF 16v cap next to the big coil that is. The 12v output is filtered by two OST 2200uF caps in parallel.

This isn't what I'm seeing on the Zalman - it appears to have the same filtering on the 12v output, but with one major difference... one of the 2200uF OST caps looks to have been replaced with no less than four Teapo 470uF caps. Whether they're in parallel too is uncertain, but very likely.

I suspect that is why the Zalman performed pretty well compared to a number of other Epsilon based supplies.

As to the OP, even with the updates, the Zalman is a 2006 PSU design, so there may be newer products with better performance now. I'd recommended the Zalman as I'd very good results and the reviews that I'd seen previously. However, I do appologize for taking the thread off topic in my defense of the Zalman. I knew it was better than other Epsilons, but perhaps that point is not releavant if newer Corsair, Seasonic or other designs are available now with even less ripple and solid stability.
 

[Spectre]

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I've found it! Turns out that Zalman has a redesigned secondary stage, and added a number of capacitors in parallel to filter the 12V section. You can see this difference in the two PCPER.com shots taken from their perspective reviews.

Image from OCZ: http://www.pcper.com/image.php?aid=333&img=13-Inside_big.jpg

Image from Zalman: http://www.pcper.com/image.php?aid=327&img=16-Inside_big.jpg

For best effect, open each on a separate tab and alternate viewing back and forth between the two of them. You'll see the difference. Oklahoma Wolf on the jonnyGURU forum noticed this and the mention in the forum had me looking for the details. See http://jonnyguru.com/forums/showpost.php?p=4498&postcount=3



I suspect that is why the Zalman performed pretty well compared to a number of other Epsilon based supplies.

As to the OP, even with the updates, the Zalman is a 2006 PSU design, so there may be newer products with better performance now. I'd recommended the Zalman as I'd very good results and the reviews that I'd seen previously. However, I do appologize for taking the thread off topic in my defense of the Zalman. I knew it was better than other Epsilons, but perhaps that point is not releavant if newer Corsair, Seasonic or other designs are available now with even less ripple and solid stability.

That could be why the 12v rail filters better but it doesn't change the 5v and 3.3v rail filtering. However, at the same time I have had rev (New) and rev (New2) Epsilons filter just fine on the 12v rails only to have the 3.3v/5v rails go to pot when generally they are fine. It also doesn't change the group regulation or the 25c rated temp.

Addressing the ripple/noise on just the 12v rails (or adding heatpipes for that matter) but not the rest of the design is kind of like putting lipstick on a pig.
 
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