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 Post subject: SilverStone Decathlon DA700 power supply
PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 10:34 am 
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SilverStone Decathlon DA700 power supply

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 1:42 pm 
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Mike, the new test setup & room provide excellent information. Well done.

Now, how about an overlay graph to compare the Silverstone & Enermax more directly?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 1:48 pm 
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HammerSandwich wrote:
Mike, the new test setup & room provide excellent information. Well done.

Now, how about an overlay graph to compare the Silverstone & Enermax more directly?

yeah but do you really need that too?! :wink:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 2:02 pm 
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Just don't want you getting lazy. :)


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 2:16 pm 
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HammerSandwich wrote:
Just don't want you getting lazy. :)

Way too late to prevent that.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 2:25 pm 
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Incredible just how quiet your enermax was in the new setup! My modu82 425w is certainly audible, and i highly doubt my bedroom is as quiet as your test room. I must have gotten one of those "not quite super quiet" models. Shame i dont have a spare fan header to check the rpm...

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 5:46 pm 
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Good review!

The new test equipment and the new chamber provide excelent information. I especially like the sound frequency information graphs, now we have something more than a simple SPL number, which sometimes does not provide accurate information about what we really hear.

And it is very good to see that you are updating data from previous reviews with the new setup. I hope that we will have soon new tables of recomended power supplies, hard disks, fans... with data from the new setup. I am looking forward to see fan comparisons at very low speeds with this new setup :)

Congratulations, good job!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 6:35 pm 
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I'm really liking the results you get from the new setup. Well done!

However, would it be possible to remove the blue background from the graphs, and either remove the gridlines or make them substantially thinner and lighter, so they don't interfere with the data trace? I know I'm being picky, but surely there's something in the options for the program.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 6:45 am 
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You should do a review on the Silverstone Strider ST70F. I switched from a 620HX and 520HX and it definitely is similar if not comparable to them. It's one of the newer PSUs that Silverstone recently released and I might have been one of the first purchasers when it landed on the Egg :D Would love to see what SPCR's opinion (I value the sound tests and evaluations a lot - the Corsair purchases were made after reading the review) on this PSU is and if you're/they're equally impressed as I am. C'mon, isn't a 135mm fan tempting enough :wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 7:08 am 
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lowteckh wrote:
You should do a review on the Silverstone Strider ST70F. I switched from a 620HX and 520HX and it definitely is similar if not comparable to them. It's one of the newer PSUs that Silverstone recently released and I might have been one of the first purchasers when it landed on the Egg :D Would love to see what SPCR's opinion (I value the sound tests and evaluations a lot - the Corsair purchases were made after reading the review) on this PSU is and if you're/they're equally impressed as I am. C'mon, isn't a 135mm fan tempting enough :wink:

As I mentioned in the conclusion, the most interesting Silverstone PSU is their new 80 Plus Silver rated ST70EF.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 9:58 am 
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Nice review, thanks SPCR! It's obviously not a challenger for the Enermax82+ without a fan swap.
What kept me until now from buying the Enermax82+ is the dissapoinment of some early adopters, expressed in the forums.
Apparently, the stock fan quality is lacking, some are noisy even at that low rpm, or they become noisier over time, 2-3 months IIRC.
I asked a question in the forums on the swapping of the stock fan in the Enermax and have it externally controlled, but got no answer:
http://www.silentpcreview.com/forums/vi ... 81b6f8d3aa
Any help with this, please?


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 Post subject: Changing the fan?!?!?!
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 10:00 am 
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It would seem to me that modding a power supply like this would be very easy and pretty damn effective. You would want to be very careful which fan you placed in there instead of the stock fan, but it would be very possible to use a quieter one. If this type of mod is on the table for you (which is true for a large portion of the readers here) then efficiency, fan controller and heat sinks become more important than the characteristics of the stock fan.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 12:36 am 
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Very nice review MikeC as well as great to see that the new chamber is working nicely… :D

Silverstone seems to have gone a bridge to far on this one when they made the statement suggesting it would beast the Enermax82+, but, as you also pointed out in the review, it could had been something wrong with the fan.


I think I got a sample with a poor fan in the Zalman unit myself and Its going back to the retailer and I will be getting a new one, get some perks simply because I’ve bought so many components from them over the years, nothing wrong with the unit as such. It has its downsides, yes, but if the fan is working it will be a keeper for my gaming system.


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 Post subject: Re: Changing the fan?!?!?!
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 6:45 am 
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crankyhobo wrote:
It would seem to me that modding a power supply like this would be very easy and pretty damn effective. You would want to be very careful which fan you placed in there instead of the stock fan, but it would be very possible to use a quieter one. If this type of mod is on the table for you (which is true for a large portion of the readers here) then efficiency, fan controller and heat sinks become more important than the characteristics of the stock fan.

Totally true... but applicable for less than 10% of the readers of these PSU articles, afaik. More than 70% of main site readers never come into the forums.

For reasonably handy people who don't mind losing the warranty with modding, the electrical performance plus efficiency, fan controller and heat sinks are all that really count. One strategy would be to disregard acoustics and just go for the highest efficiency PSU your money can buy. Make a swap with your favorite fan and you're laughing. On the other hand, by the time you add in the extra fan and time cost, maybe the higher cost of a PSU that's good, efficient AND quiet out of the box is worth it.

Choices, choices. :wink:

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Last edited by MikeC on Thu Oct 30, 2008 7:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 7:19 am 
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walle wrote:
Very nice review MikeC as well as great to see that the new chamber is working nicely… :D

Thanks. :)

But there is a bit of an issue. When doing thermal testing -- like PSU load testing -- the chamber gets warmer. A full cycle test -- from 20W to max load -- takes some 3~4 hours for a 700W model. In the last 30~40 minutes, some 500~1000W of heat is being pumped into the room. The resulting rise in ambient air temperature can affect the noise-to-power curve, making it steeper than it might be otherwise.

This rise in the ambient temp around the test loader also happened in the previous kitchen lab, but because there were open doorways to three other rooms/areas, the ventilation was good enough to keep the rise to maybe 2C max from start to finish, which seemed perfectly acceptable to me. Some real world applications would actually see much high temp rise than that if a system was pushed that hard -- imagine the temp under your desk after several hours of 3D gaming with PC containing a pair of 4870x2 + uber-quadcore .

The chamber is more enclosed with just a single door. And tho it's left wide open except when acoustic measurements or recordings are made, the heat buildup in there is more acute. During the DA700 testing, the rise was higher than 3C by the 400W load testing. The testing had to be stopped to pull the air temp back down to keep the test conditions stable (and comparative to previous tests). I think the exposed blue batting may also absorb and retain more heat than ordinary drywall, because even with a large box fan blowing hard from the doorway, it took some time to drop the temps by 2C.

I'm in the midst of another PSU review now (yeah doing them in a batch), and I'm playing around with hanging the box fan at the top of the doorway and keeping it blowing out at the lowest setting, starting at the 150W power test level. The position and airflow direction would take advantage of convection; hopefully cooler air from the kitchen lab would flow in through the bottom of the doorway. The main thing is to keep the heat rise in the room to 2C or lower.

FYI, a new automated PC-based PSU load tester has been in the works for a year. This was initiated as a project last fall by electrical/computer engineering students at Univ of BC. It counts as a course or two. The mechanical design is mine, the rest they came up with based on my requirements; I am their "client". They were supposed to have finished before the summer.... but there were parts supply issues and they're still testing / validating now.

When that thing is done, the testing procedure will be become much more streamlined, with all the electrical data collection done automatically. My guess is that it will cut the testing time by at least half. That might make it worthwhile to add another twist to the testing: Simulation of operation in a case that has a separate PSU chamber -- like the P180 series, Fusion -- and a handful of others. This would be only for the acoustics / thermals and hopefully, go quick. I'm itching to have that tester in here!

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Last edited by MikeC on Fri Oct 31, 2008 7:24 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 9:22 am 
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if you're not coninuously recording, you can get away with noisy AC things while it's heating up and just turn it off when you're recording, can't you?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2008 9:59 am 
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MikeC wrote:
FYI, a new automated PC-based PSU load tester has been in the works for a year... ...They were supposed to have finished before the summer.... but there were parts supply issues and they're still testing / validating now.


Now that sounds interesting. You're going to post a nice write up about it when you get it, right? :) The chamber article was a good read, so another one would be fantastic.


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