Seasonic G360 PSU: High efficiency & performance, low price

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7. TEMPERATURE, COOLING & NOISE

The fan in the G360 started up at a very low speed, estimated to be 600~700 RPM. The subjective noise was extremely low, basically inaudible from a meter distance. Very close up (under 1'), a bit of electronic noise was faintly audible, along with a slight buzzy sound, probably from the fan's ball bearings. There some tonal aspects, but the overall level was too low for them to have any impact. In a ntushell, it was virtually silent.

The default ~13 dBA@1m SPL did not change till around 200W load, when the controller started spinning the fan up a bit. After about 15 minutes at 200W, the SPL had risen up to 19 dBA, which is still pretty quiet but clearly audible in a quiet room. From that load up, the fan sped up quickly, hitting 24 dBA at 250W, and 34 dBA at 300W. At full load, the fan managed to speed up just a wee bit more for a maximum of 29 dBA.

The high efficiency combined with the agressive fan speed profile above 200W ensures that the G360 stays as cool as a cucumber: There's little heat to dissipate, and the increased fan speed at higher power loads disspates what heat there is very quickly. Even at maximum load, the exhaust air temperature was only 33°C.

IN THE HOT BOX

When exposed to the heat of the hotbox, the Seasonic G360 fan started to spin up about 50W lower, as one could predict. The PSU's cooling system has to handle much more heat, and the fan controoler relies on a thermal sensor, so naturally, it ramps up at a lower load. Hence, 150W is the point where the fan started to speed up. Still, in the typical standard ATX mid-tower case with modern system featuring an IGP or a <80W GPU, it would be rare for the PSU fan to become intrusive.

Seasonic G360 SPL: In Hot Box vs. Out
Power load
<150W
150W
200W
250W
300W
360W
out
13
13
18
24
34
39
in hot box
13
17
23
30
39
39
Measurements are in dBA@1m
* See note in text above.

COMPARISONS

The comparison table below shows the SPL versus Power Load data on PSUs tested in ambient room temperature, typically 20~24°C. It is most relevant when PSUs are used in cases that provide wide open access to cooler outside air for the PSU cooling fan. Its rank is low, although ion a real system up to ~200W load, it is hard to differentiate the PSUs on the table on the basis of noise.

PSU Noise (dBA@1m) vs. Power in Ambient Room Temperature
Model
90W
150W
200W
250W
300W
400W
500W
6-700W
850W
Kingwin Lazer Platinum LZP-550
<10*
<10
<10
<10
<10
<10
16
n/a
n/a
Seasonic X-400 Fanless
<10*
<10
<10
<10
<10
<10
n/a
n/a
n/a
Enermax Modu/Pro87+ 500
11
11
11
11
11
11
18
n/a
n/a
Corsair AX850
<10
<10
<10
11~13
12
13
17
24
35
Seasonic X-650
<10
<10
<10
<10
<10
16
27
32
n/a
Nexus NX-5000
11
11
12
12
12.5
14
19
n/a
n/a
Antec CP-850
12
12
12
12
12
14
20
24
40
Enermax Eco80+ 500W
<11
12
12
16
20
23
28
n/a
n/a
Antec TP-750
12
12
12
14
15
27
31
40
n/a
Seasonic G360
<13
<13
18
24
34
39
n/a
n/a
n/a
Cougar GX-700
15
15
15
17
21
25
35
35
n/a

The comparison table below shows the SPL versus Power Load data on all the PSUs tested in the hotbox. It's difficult to rank them, as the measured SPL varies with power load. The units which are quietest at minimum load are not always the quietest at midload (100W~300W), which may make them louder in actual use. Then there's the noise level at 400W and up, which will determine the quietest PSUs for high power gaming rigs, during actual gaming. In this environment, the G360 ranks poorly again, due to the relatively quick ramp-up of fan speed as load increases.

PSU Noise (dBA@1m) vs. Power in Hotbox/Anechoic Chamber
Model
90W
150W
200W
250W
300W
400W
500W
6-700W
850W
Seasonic X-400 Fanless
<10*
<10
<10
<10
<10
<10
n/a
n/a
n/a
Kingwin Lazer Platinum LZP-550
<10*
<10
<10
<10
<10
16
22
n/a
n/a
Enermax Modu/Pro87+ 500
11
11
11
11
14
20
23
n/a
n/a
Corsair AX850
<10
<10
12
15
18
25
35
38
39
Seasonic X-650
<10
<10
12
14
16
31
31
32
n/a
Nexus Value 430
11
11
16
18
18
19
n/a
n/a
n/a
Nexus NX-5000
11
11
12
14
22
24
25
n/a
n/a
Antec CP-850
12
12
12
14
14
26
40
44
45
Enermax Eco80+ 500W
<11
12
16
19
26
32
33
n/a
n/a
Seasonic M12D 850W
14
14
14
14
14
24
37
42
42
Antec TP-750
12
12
14
14
18
33
40
40
n/a
Chill Innovation CP-700M
15
15
15
15
17
30
34
34
n/a
Antec Signature 650
15
15
15
18
18
28
36
47
n/a
Coolermaster M700W
14
14
18
21
25
27
34
34
n/a
Seasonic G360
<13
17
23
30
39
39
n/a
n/a
n/a
Cougar GX-700
15
15
18
20
25
32
35
36
n/a
SilverStone DA700
18
18
18
18
23
32
35
41
n/a
Nexus RX-8500
14
14
17
22
28
32
32
33
33
NesteQ ECS7001
22
22
22
21
23
25
36
37
n/a
PCPC Silencer 610
20
24
24
24
24
30
40
50
n/a

The green boxes are >30 dBA@1m SPL.
*<10= below the ambient of our anechoic chamber; immeasurably low @1m in any environment

Caution: Please keep in mind that the data in the above table is specific to the conditions of our test setup. Change the cooling configuration, the ambient temperature and any number of other factors, and you could change the point at which the fans start speeding up, as well as the rate of the rise in speed. The baseline SPL is accurate, however, probably to within 1 dBA.



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