Modu82+ 625 Power Supply: Enermax to the Forefront

Power
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March 02, 2008 by Mike Chin

Product
Enermax Modu82+ 625W (EMD525AWT)
ATX12V 80-Plus Power Supply
Manufacturer
Enermax
MSRP
US$166

Enermax is a pioneer in retail packaged computer power supplies for the do-it-yourself market. Back in the late 80s, Enermax was the first to apply a metallic paint job instead of the ubquitous grey, the first to create a full-color box to compete for your attention on retail shelves, and the first to employ the then-revolutionary concept of dual fans, sleeved cables, and gold-color wire fan guards.

In more recent history, Enermax has been somewhat swamped by the thundering herd of brands stomping into the retail PSU market. As far as we know, Enermax is the manufacturer of its own power supplies, unlike many of the new brands that are offering PSUs. (We're quite sure that Enermax-branded cases, fans and other non-PSU items are not made by Enermax, however.) Look back at SPCR articles, and you'll see that one of the very first pieces was about modifying an Enermax PSU to make it run more quietly. Their mark on the "silent PC" sector has not been deep or broad thus far; various models over the years have been judged mostly to be good performers, pretty good for noise, but nowhere near the top ranks for quiet. This was our assessment on the most recent midpower models we reviewed, the Liberty 500W and 620W. Enermax also makes 1KW models for OC gamers. (Obsessive-Compulsive and probably Over-Clocking, too)

Recently, our PR contact at Enermax offered us an opportunity to review a first-production sample of a new model that will be hitting all the stores in early March. They have been quietly available for sale in limited numbers for a few weeks, at NewEgg.com, Micro Center, PC Club and ASI Corp. The Modu82+ is a line that Enermax believes will warm SPCR's cockles, and tickle your fancy, dear SPCR readers: It's said to be among the quietest and the most efficient in the world. Since low noise and high efficiency are the qualities that we value most in a power supply, we were eager to accept the Modu82+ 625W for review.

As is common with many early production samples, this one came in a non-descript box. Rest assured that the retail packaging will be as colorful as any Enermax has produced in the past.


The contents of the Modu82+ 625W package.

A foldable fabric pouch filled with sleeved cables makes it clear that the Modu82+ is a modular cable power supply. The new model has many other features, which are summarized below. There are three models in the line, the 625W, a 525W and a 425W. The suggested retail prices of the three models are $165.99, $145.99 and $109.99, respectively. They are definitely not in the budget category, falling in line with the pricing of premium brands such as Seasonic, Corsair and PC Power & Cooling.

FEATURE HIGHLIGHTS

The name of the new series appears to be referenced to a new 80 Plus category. The 80 Plus program, which encourages power supply makers to offer higher efficiency to reduce electricity consumption (on behalf of US public ultilities), has added three new categories of efficiency performance. The original 80 Plus program calls for a power supply to reach 80% efficiency or better at 20%, 50% and 100% of rated power. The new categories call for higher efficiency; please see the details on this page at the 80 Plus site. One of these categories calls for 82% efficiency at 20% and 100% of rated power, and 85% efficiency at 50% of rated power. Hence the 82+ in the product series name.

Interestingly, no test and verification report on this or any other Modu82+ PSU is currently posted at the 80 Plus web site; however, Enermax did send copies of official 80 Plus test reports on the Modu82+ 525W and another model, the Pro82+ 525W. Both met the new "82 Plus" efficiency requirements. The Pro82+ 525W appears to employ the same circuitry and parts as the Modu82+ series, but it is not modular (non-detachable cables) and it is priced $10 lower.

Modu82+ 625 Feature Highlights (from Enermax web site)
FEATURE & BRIEF COMMENT
ATX12V v2.3 ready!
Compliant with the newest standard for desktop power supplies.
Hmmm! The ATX12V spec slipped quietly to a new version without our notice.
82PLUS ready!
82-88% efficiency @ 20-100% load. Compliant with ENERGY STAR® 4.0, Blue Angel and 80 PLUS® efficiency requirements.
Impressive claim. See main body text above.
FUTURE ready!
12Pin modular design for possibly upcoming new CPU`s and graphics 10 and/or 12Pin connectors.
Seems good.
24/7 @ 40°C ready!
Non-Stop industrial class performance at 40°C/104°F ambient.
40°C is good but some PSUs are rated for operation at 50°C.
DXX ready!
For PCI Express 2.0 / DXX next generation graphic cards with 6+2P (8P) PCI-E connectors.
Not that unusual among premium brands.
GAMING ready!
ATX12V v2.3 support for latest Intel Core 2 Duo/Quad/Extreme, and AMD Athlon64X2/X4 & Phenom and SLI or CrossFire X.
That covers every CPU and GPU technology out there today.
WORLD ready!
100-240VAC in with automatic adjustment and active PFC for global usage.
That's a new way of stating a feature that's been around for a while.
EMC ready!
Full-scale electromagnetic filtering protects your system against radiation interferences. (CE EMC EN61204-3 compliance)
Again, not unusual.
AirGuard
Patented air-inlet with optimal aero-dynamical design reducing noisy air turbulences.
An interesting feature we'll examine.
SpeedGuard
Advanced fuzzy logic 12cm fan speed control for optimal cooling and minimum noise. (Patented)
Fuzzy logic? It's used for better elevator control, but how does it work here?
SafeGuard
Industry-leading sixtuple protection circuitry of OCP, OVP, UVP, OPP, OTP & SCP protects your system.
Very good.
TRIPLE 12V rails
The best rail design for this PSU class for maximum safety and compatibility.
Hmmm. Does that mean three current limited runs of cables? Which ones are bundled together?
3 Year Limited Warranty
Fairly generous.

SPECIFICATIONS

OUTPUT SPECIFICATIONS: Enermax Modu82+ 625
AC Input
100~240VAC, 9.5-4A, 50-60 Hz
DC Output
+3.3V
+5V
+12V1
+12V2
+12V3
-12V
+5VSB
Maximum
Output Current
24A
24A
25A
25A
25A
7.2W
15W
140W 600W (50A)
Maximum
Combined
625W
Presumed rated for full power at up to 40°C.




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