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 Post subject: Seasonic S12-500 & 600
PostPosted: Sun May 22, 2005 9:56 pm 
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The Seasonic S12-500 & 600 PSUs have been reviewed.

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Last edited by MikeC on Thu Aug 04, 2005 12:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 5:46 am 
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Above 85% across a 350W range :shock: We can only hope that other PSU manufacturer's follow suit.

Still disappointed that they changed the fans from the YL models, though.

Nice review, Mike.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 6:19 am 
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Wow... 85% efficiency that's nice.


I agree with you Green Shoes, I'm dissapointed too with the fan change.
I wanted to buy the 400HT but it seems that it won't be imported to germany. So perhaps I buy the S12 500 and change the fan. After the fan change you "have" to do it with all other S12 PSUs anyways.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 6:20 am 
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So good I just ordered one from NewEgg. :)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 6:37 am 
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Edward Ng wrote:
So good I just ordered one from NewEgg. :)

They may not be in the retail/distribution channels yet!
They still show the old packaging! not the new one with the new stickers!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 6:43 am 
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Green Shoes & Webfire --

You guys don't read carefully enough.
article wrote:
When listened up close. the dual ball bearing fan has a bit of the typical ball-bearing chatter, but it is very subdued, and based on our recollection, much quieter than the earlier 5-blade Yate Loon fans first used in these models.

The new Adda in the 500/600 is quieter than the old 5-blade Yate Loon in them. There's no way I'd be swapping fans if I needed the power. Not unless I had a customized rig with an alternate way of good cooling for the PSU.

The differences between the YL version of the 430 and the Adda version are also smaller than the measurements suggest. I remember writing that already in the article & this as well: I doubt you could hear the difference without the two side by side and even then it would be a tossup & dependent on other factors in the systems.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 7:05 am 
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@MikeC: Well I don't need the power of the 500 Watt version, but the high efficiency is very tempting. That's why I wanted to buy the 400HT with the Yate Loon SM12.

I noticed that the Adda is more quiet than the B12 but from the measurements between the SM12 and the Adda it looked like it would be a bigger difference between the two.
Thanks for clearing that up, that the actual hearing difference isn't that big. I overread that part somehow. Sorry.

Will you also review the 400HT? Well it isn't avaiable here but when it has a nice efficiency rating I might import it from somewhere.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 7:25 am 
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You really have to think through clearly on what the advantages of incremental efficiency improvements are. Let's just say on average in typical <150W DC output usage that the S12-500/600 are 83% and the S12-430 is 79%. This seems pretty big, but examine it closely.

At 125W output, 83% efficiency means AC power draw of 151W.
At 125W output, 79% efficiency means AC power draw of 158W.

OK, we're looking at 7W. So what?

At this power level, neither PSU is even remotely being pushed, and both remain perfectly cool (at least in our test rig, which is not a cool environment). The 430 is a bit quieter.

The efficiency doesn't really matter here, does it?

On the other hand, if your system routine draws lots of power and you run it 24/7, then perhaps you will feel better about the small savings in energy running with the more efficient PSU. Of course you could turn the machine off more often...

My point is that incrementally higher efficiency by itself is not really a compelling case for purchase or replacement for most users. If a PSU is available easily and it does a good job quietly and does not mean I use a whole lot more energy (or create a lot more heat)... then I for one would not go in search of some obscure expensive / difficult alternative for a few percentage points improvement in efficiency. But that's me. <shrug>

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 7:43 am 
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tabbal wrote:
Edward Ng wrote:
So good I just ordered one from NewEgg. :)

They may not be in the retail/distribution channels yet!
They still show the old packaging! not the new one with the new stickers!


I'll let you know then, when I receive it, which one I end up with.

EDIT: Btw, what's the difference, other than the stickers? I was unaware of there being more than one model of S12-600. Please excuse me if this has been mentioned before, but I'm at work and a bit too busy to look it up myself.

-Ed

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 8:15 am 
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Edward Ng wrote:

I'll let you know then, when I receive it, which one I end up with.

EDIT: Btw, what's the difference, other than the stickers? I was unaware of there being more than one model of S12-600. Please excuse me if this has been mentioned before, but I'm at work and a bit too busy to look it up myself.

-Ed

Here :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 8:23 am 
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winguy wrote:
Edward Ng wrote:

I'll let you know then, when I receive it, which one I end up with.

EDIT: Btw, what's the difference, other than the stickers? I was unaware of there being more than one model of S12-600. Please excuse me if this has been mentioned before, but I'm at work and a bit too busy to look it up myself.

-Ed

Here :)


Thanks; I knew they had updated S12-330 and S12-430, but I didn't know that the updates included S12-500 and S12-600 (I thought they were introduced with the newer features).

-Ed

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 8:44 am 
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Sorry Mike, forgot that the 500 + models used a different fan than the 430 & under. :oops:


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 Post subject: horizontally mounted sleeve bearing fans
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 12:45 pm 
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There are several articles out on the web that compare sleeve and ball bearing fans and they are all in agreement that horizontal mounting of sleeve bearing fans is not recommended, especially in a raised temperature environment. I posted these articles in an earlier thread. The only thing separating the metal bearing parts is lubricant and when mounted horizontally the lubricant naturally settles to one end of the bearing. The yate loon might be quiet but it is by no means constructed of the best materials and certainly no manufacturer would want this liability. Wasn't one of there reasons for switching better field reliability? I suspect they went into production without having found a suitable replacement fan. - FG

EDIT: My point is that a ball bearing fan makes better engineering sense and because it is a very quiet ball bearing fan there seems to be no penalty for the change. Why import a yate loon or a papst when you can buy an adda at mouser?

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Last edited by frankgehry on Mon May 23, 2005 2:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 12:52 pm 
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Worst case scenario: you install it and find it too loud. THEN you could void the warranty and replace the fan. But I suspect that if Mike says it's darn quiet and even the most discerning ears can't really tell the difference between the Adda and YL fans, then I would tend to believe that the new models will be sounding fine.

BTW, what fan would you swap in there? A Nexus? A YL? Where does one even find YL's? I think i'll go do a forum search for that....

-PS


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 1:57 pm 
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No, I agree that the new ball bearing fan is just as quiet as the previous yate loon. As a matter of fact, I would buy them as alternatives to sleeve bearing fans as I've been buying JMC's and Bi-sonics, both of which have double ball bearings and are always available in the us for about $15 - 120mm and $9 - 80mm. Fans just shouldn't cost much more than this because they only cost two or three dollars to make. They are very smooth and quiet and built like a papst. The JMC low speed tops out at 1600 rpm just like a D12SM-12.

I looked up the adda at www.mouser.com and with a tach it is a special order item that sells for $35. A non tach version goes for $17. Even the new acoustifan dustproof is a ball bearing fan. This is just my opinion, but I don't think you will be seeing new sleeve bearing fans in the future of any quality with the exception of panaflo's and papst. With longer life and now quiet ball bearing fans, sleeve bearing fans will be even harder to find than they are now. In some cases manufacturers are already designing ball bearing fans first and then making a slight redesign for sleeve bearings so they don't have to produce two completely different fan lines.

I will have to read my post again because I regard the change as very positive. There really seems to be no penalty for the change. Only more durability. - FG

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 2:34 pm 
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I presume the changes apply for the bulk packaged "SS-500HT (Bulk S12) 500Watt PSU" as well?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 3:00 pm 
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Who knows. Nobody's ordered one of those recently and told us, and how long will old stock be kept for?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 3:06 pm 
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MassMan wrote:
I presume the changes apply for the bulk packaged "SS-500HT (Bulk S12) 500Watt PSU" as well?

no se. check w/ Seasonic directly on this; those units are not available in North Am afaik.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2005 5:07 am 
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Any word on who produces the capacitors? Rubycon? I believe Sanyo and Luxon may also be Japanese. Thanks.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2005 1:10 pm 
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One thing I've been hoping to see SeaSonic do is modular connectivity. It just strikes me as such a great idea to minimize how many cords you choking airflow. Especially since my cable origami is... well it doesn't exist, heh. Maybe that would drive efficiency down though?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2005 2:24 pm 
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How does the Seasonic S12-500 compare with the Antec Phantom 500 for noise? I plan on using the Antec P180 and it has a PSU duct with a 120mm fan. I planned on putting the Phantom on the lowest fan setting and hope the 120mm duct fan would keep the fan from ramping up even during gaming. Any thoughts about this or is it about the same anyway?

I also noticed that the recommended specs for the Nvidia Geforce 7800GTX requires a 500w PSU with 34A on the 12V rail. I'm still wondering how this relates to ATX12V v2.0 with its dual 12volt rails. Am I correct to assume that the rail current is additive? If this is the case then the S12-500 only has 33A. There was much talk at the Anandtech and Abxzone forums when SLI first came out and many people began to wonder if it was because of insufficient current on the 12volt rails for dual video cards.

I plan on building a HTPC gaming system and the power supply needs to be able to handle a dualcore CPU, duel video cards in sli, a sound card, DVDRW, two 300G harddrives, 3 120mm fans, SLI mobo, 1024mb mem, and possibly a PPU in a couple years. I don't think I need anything bigger than a 500W even with the next gen Geforce 7800GTX cards so is the Phantom 5000 a safer and quieter bet for a SLI system?

Any thoughts?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2005 2:32 pm 
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ImJacksAmygdala --

For a quick comparison, check the SPL readings in the results tables in the two PSU reviews along with the sound files and our subjective listenting notes..... & judge for yourself.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2005 2:46 pm 
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ImJacksAmygdala wrote:
I also noticed that the recommended specs for the Nvidia Geforce 7800GTX requires a 500w PSU with 34A on the 12V rail. I'm still wondering how this relates to ATX12V v2.0 with its dual 12volt rails. Am I correct to assume that the rail current is additive? If this is the case then the S12-500 only has 33A. There was much talk at the Anandtech and Abxzone forums when SLI first came out and many people began to wonder if it was because of insufficient current on the 12volt rails for dual video cards.


Manufacturers have to overestimate, they would not cut it as fine as that. I would be surprised if you had any problems with it. I'm not sure how the dual lines work with this, though. Maybe someone can back me up here.

By the way, that's going to be one hot HTPC. Good luck cooling that while still giving it the capaibility for 'quiet' when fairly idle.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2005 4:35 pm 
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StarfishChris wrote:
ImJacksAmygdala wrote:
By the way, that's going to be one hot HTPC. Good luck cooling that while still giving it the capaibility for 'quiet' when fairly idle.


Yes HTPC and gaming rig don't usually mean quiet. I'm trying to make a quiet HTPC gaming rig so I am looking for a quiet 500W power supply that can handle SLI and the rest. You are right though this is not a very easy thing to do.

I am relying on the fact that I can use a quiet PSU because the Antec P180 has a PSU duct and a 120mm fan that I can replace with a Nexus. Hopefully the Phantom 500W fan will never ramp up to speed with this cooling solution. I also plan on using a Zalman CNPS7700-ALCU for the CPU and hopefully some VF700-CU for the SLI graphics cards as I upgrade. I have seen pictures of people that were able to do this. I also plan on replacing the two upper 120mm with Nexus fans if the stock are too loud on low and suspending the hard drives. Once I get the case I am even thinking about putting some absorber feet on the side of the case and suspending the drives horizontal and then using an external DVDRW drive that I know is quiet. This will also let me put the computer on the HDTV stand futher out of site. The stand has an open construction on the bottom shelf so the computer should be able to breath well and be concealed. I guess I'll find out soon if its possible to make a quiet gaming rig for the living room.

The S12-500 sounds interesting for the cheaper price, but I am thinking that it might be worth it to spend a little more on the Phantom if I can keep it cool enough not to ramp up with this case. That was really why I posted. I can listen to the sound files all day, but I just don't know how easy it is to keep the fan from ramping in this new case. Thats why I asked for any thoughts.

If SPCR ever does a review on the Antec P180 case it would be nice to know how the Antec Phantom 500 performs in it. I think that Antecs unlinked page for the P180 case even recommends the Phantom line of PSUs for it.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2005 5:37 pm 
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KorruptioN wrote:
Any word on who produces the capacitors? Rubycon? I believe Sanyo and Luxon may also be Japanese. Thanks.


The ones I can see in the pics are Chemi-Con. Very nice. And Luxon is the absolute bottom of the barrel in Taiwanese crap. Sanyo, Rubycon, Chemi-Con, and Panasonic are the only acceptable brands in computer equipment AFAIC. I've lost count of how many Antec Truepowers I've seen with blown ultra-cheapo caps.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2005 4:34 am 
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Elite wrote:
KorruptioN wrote:
Any word on who produces the capacitors? Rubycon? I believe Sanyo and Luxon may also be Japanese. Thanks.

The ones I can see in the pics are Chemi-Con. Very nice. And Luxon is the absolute bottom of the barrel in Taiwanese crap. Sanyo, Rubycon, Chemi-Con, and Panasonic are the only acceptable brands in computer equipment AFAIC. I've lost count of how many Antec Truepowers I've seen with blown ultra-cheapo caps.

Ooops, I probably mistook Luxon for somebody else, my mistake. :oops:

Are you getting Chemi-Con from brown colour of the caps?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2005 10:22 am 
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KorruptioN wrote:
Ooops, I probably mistook Luxon for somebody else, my mistake. :oops:

Are you getting Chemi-Con from brown colour of the caps?


That as well as the pattern on the vent stamp. Chemi-Cons have the Mercedes-Benz style stamp and are almost always reddish brown or a mint green color.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2005 3:18 pm 
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winguy wrote:
Edward Ng wrote:

I'll let you know then, when I receive it, which one I end up with.

EDIT: Btw, what's the difference, other than the stickers? I was unaware of there being more than one model of S12-600. Please excuse me if this has been mentioned before, but I'm at work and a bit too busy to look it up myself.

-Ed

Here :)


Okay the one I got doesn't have this sticker, so how do you tell for sure, and that page doesn't state exactly what the differences are. Is it just the caps and the fan? And what's special about the fan, that it is ball bearing, or that it's dual ball bearing? My unit is marked as ball bearing, plus it has dual 6-pin PCI-Ex connectors, anyway. I don't feel like voiding my warranty, so I'm not opening it just to check caps (and I couldn't care less which caps I ended up with; I'm confident the original ones are fine).

Oh and btw mine is labeled as Rev. A1, and it's an HT model, too.

Bleh, whatever; honestly, I don't really care. The thing is great as is; however, in case anyone wanted to know, NewEgg is still carrying the one I got, as that's where I bought mine.

-Ed

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2005 4:50 pm 
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Ed, count the number of blades on the fan. If it has 5, then you have the somewhat noisier original Yate Loon. If 7, then it should be the better Adda.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2005 11:50 pm 
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MikeC wrote:
My point is that incrementally higher efficiency by itself is not really a compelling case for purchase or replacement for most users.


but it's a dealmaker if already shopping for a new PSU, especially for a machine that's going to be left on. well, at least for me.


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