Thermaltake W0029 Fanless Purepower 350 PSU

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May 5, 2005 by Mike Chin with Devon Cooke

Product
Thermaltake Fanless Purepower 350
Model W0029
— 350W ATX power supply
Manufacturer
Thermaltake
Market Price
US$115~149

A Fanless ATX power supply is still rare enough to merit close attention at SPCR. The reason for its existence is to power a computer without introducing any noise of its own, so the target market dovetails perfectly with SPCR's audience. No wonder these fanless samples keep coming our way.

Many brands offer them now, but usually just a single model. Most designs take the approach of maximizing passive cooling by turning the entire PSU casing into a massive heatsink. The Antec Phantom 350 and the Coolmax Taurus are are good examples of this approach. The Silverstone ST30NF / Etasis EFN30 combine this approach with heatpipes that transfer the heat from the hottest components to the back of the external casing.

Trust Thermaltake to take this idea and go over the top with it: The Fanless Purepower 350 adds a stack of thin copper fins at the end of two heatpipes, and positions these cooling fins on the back of the PSU, outside the case. The idea is for the heatpipes to wick the heat to the external fins, and for the fins to dissipate the heat via convection outside the case. It's a good concept for a silent PSU, at least on the face of it.


Over-the-top heatpipe / heatsink PSU from Thermaltake.

Now that I've got completely ahead of myself, let's back up a bit and give you the introductory basics for this power supply. As you may be aware, Thermaltake does not make its own PSUs. This applies to many of the brands in the industry that have suddenly begun offering PSUs in the past year or two. The PSUs are made to spec by one of the big PSU makers, then packaged up for Thermaltake to market and distribute. Thermaltake does have a big distribution network established over many years in the PC accessories and peripherals business, so their reach is extensive. They have... a certain marketing style.


Another big carry-handle box for this PSU.


The product requires a lot of packing material as the external HS are quite exposed to damage from shock.
We know: Our first sample came with the inside heatpiped copper heatsinks rattling about from something breaking loose in transit.


The contents: The PSU, AC cable, mounting screws and a user's manual.

FEATURE HIGHLIGHTS from the THERMALTAKE WEB SITE
FEATURE & BRIEF COMMENT
Silent fanless PSU, 0dB Design
It should be, with no fan.
Heat pipe technology, ensure the best performance
We'll find out.
Application For AMD and Intel system including Pentium 4
We should hope so.
Muti-direction Vent,transfer heat to exterior through natural convection
Vents on the PSU casing cannot move the heat way very far; it will simply hang around the PSU in most PC cases.
Huge Heatsink and Extruded aluminum casing transfer the heat quickly As with most fanless PSUs.
Intelligent Cable Management: Colorful cable sleeving, Optimum air-flow
It's actually quite nicely done.
Thermal overload, short circuit, current overload, over voltage-protection OK.
With no Active PFC Why is this a feature?

SPECIFICATIONS: Thermaltake W0029 Silent Purepower Fanless PSU
AC Input
115 VAC / 230 VAC at 47-63Hz and 2.5~5.0A
DC Output
+3.3V
+5V
+12V
-5V
-12V
+5VSB
Maximum Output Current
16A
(52.8W)
22A
(110W)
14A
(168W)
0.3A
(1.5W)
0.8A
(9.6W)
2.0A
(10W)
Maximum
350W

The output specs are unusual in that no combined maximum power for various voltage lines are given. We can safely assume that the +5V and +3.3V lines are on the same rail. Yet no combined maximum for the two lines is provided. The 350W is the sum of the maximum output power for each of the voltage lines.

OTHER DETAILS
Unit Size
150 x 140 x 85mm
Net Weight
2.65kg (5.8lb)
Efficiency
>70%
Over Voltage Protection recycle AC to reset
+5V trip point < +7.0V
+3.3V trip point < +4.3V
+12V trip point <+15.6V

Proper documentation turned out to be a serious issue with this product. There was no one place that contained all the technical specifications one normally sees grouped together.

There was the question of compliance with any version of Intel's industry setting ATX12V PSU design guide. It is certainly not the current V2.01. One would think if it was compliant with even V1.3, the previous major version of ATX12V, this would be indicated. Theree was nothing on the product box, manual, or product sticker to indicate any kind of ATX12V guid compliance. Neither was it on the main product page. A reader pointed out that the W0029 was grouped in a listing of ATX12V v1.3 PSUs on Thermaltake's web site. This is not good.

Another oddity is that there are only two certifying marks mentioned on the PSU label: FCC and CE. There is no CSA or UL safety approval mark, unlike all the PSUs we've reviewed as far back as I can recall. This seemed just too far off the mark so I did a search on their web site, the manual, the rest of the PSU, and finally the retail box. At the bottom edge of one side of the box, there are four logos for UL (combined US & Canada), TUV (German), FCC (for EMI), and CE (for EU, mostly for EMI). It is the only place where all these certifications are shown. This is not good either.



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