350-450W Roundup: 11 Cheap PSUsby Martin Kaffei on July 3, 2012 1:30 PM EST
Corsair CX430 V2 430W
Corsair was using Seasonic units for the majority of their products, but most of their cheaper offerings are now manufactured by CWT. The CX430 V2 is the lowest-end unit from Corsair, which still has enough quality to satisfy the customers. It comes in matt black and has a large Corsair logo on the fan grille. The back is perforated with hexagonal-shaped openings and a small power switch can be found above the power input.
The contents of the package are what you'd expect. You get the required four screws and power cord, naturally, along with some cable ties, a user manual with product data and safety references. Corsair prefers a large single-rail 12V design, rated at 28A (336W). The reason for the high rating of the 12V rail is the high power consumption of CPUs and GPUs.The small rails are rated at 20A each with a combined output of 120W; that's comparatively weak compared to some older PSUs, but since modern PCs usually don't need much from the low voltage rails, this will hardly be a problem.
A 120mm Yate Loon fan cools these units. It has a ball bearing and seven sharp-edged fan blades. A plastic guard blocks part of the intake area to help direct airflow.
|Cables and Connectors|
Connector type (length)
|Main||1x 24-pin (45cm) fixed|
|ATX12V/EPS12V||1x 4+4-pin (50cm) fixed|
|PCIe||1x 6/8-pin (50cm) fixed|
3x SATA (ca. 50, 65, 80cm) fixed
3x SATA (ca. 50, 65, 80cm) fixed
|3x HDD, 1x FDD (ca. 50, 65, 80, 95cm) fixed|
The inside reveals a typical CWT design with three heatsinks, two for the primary side and the third for the secondary side. Three of the filtering caps are attached to the other side of the AC jack. The internal layout is pretty typical using a two-transistor forward converter, with a minimal number of components in the transient filtering. The primary cap is made by Samxon--just like the secondary ones. They are a slightly lower end vendor CWT uses for these units.
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pvdw - Wednesday, July 4, 2012 - linkHere's some good ones to look at in 350W-450W range:
Seasonic X-400 Fanless
Silentmaxx Fanless 400W MX460-PFL01
Nexus Value 430
And just above the 450W range, but unlikely to use any more power in most systems are these good ones:
Enermax Modu/Pro87+ 500W
pvdw - Wednesday, July 4, 2012 - linkBTW, though I really enjoy most Anandtech articles, your PSU ones can't beat SilentPCReview. But then I can't see how you could do better without an anechoic chamber
Check out their list of recommended supplies:
A5 - Wednesday, July 4, 2012 - linkThe cheapest PSU on that list is well over $100, which is more than double the most expensive one in this article, which is about finding a good "cheap" PSU.
I'm glad AT did this article as it should encourage a little more competition in the low-end space.
knutjb - Wednesday, July 4, 2012 - linkIn my experience I've had a couple low end PSUs do bad things to MBs even though they were modestly loaded. After using a number of different manufacturers all I buy are Seasonics. I get them when they are on sale.
I have a 9 yr old 600 S-12? on its second system and the output measures the same as it did when new. Blow out the dust occasionally and it just works. Even in low end systems I don't trust inexpensive PSUs, their quality control is all but non-existent with wide variation in samples.
You get what you pay for and I don't like buying things twice.
pvdw - Thursday, July 5, 2012 - linkA quick search turns up this link:
The Seasonic S12II 430 for $60 shipped. Or the 380W for $54 shipped.
clarkn0va - Friday, July 6, 2012 - linkSeasonic SS-350ET
Supposedly not as quiet as their retail offerings, but always inexpensive. I would like to see how this one holds up against similar offerings.
Maybe AT needs a Bench section for PSUs?
Belard - Wednesday, July 4, 2012 - linkI've bought some CX models for bottom end PCs for clients...
But I picked up two 500w models, both were defective.
1) Defective power connector (at the motherboard)...
2) Flutter fan noises.
Returned them, bought Thermaltake TR2s.
piroroadkill - Wednesday, July 4, 2012 - linkWhen the Corsairs first hit the scene, the HX series were all Seasonic.
Corsair is a nice rebrander, but I go straight to Seasonic for my own system's PSU these days. I have a Seasonic X-660..
Arnulf - Wednesday, July 4, 2012 - linkGreat article !
I wish you could round up even more models and/or present the results in a common bench-like database (you know, like the CPU comparison etc.) where different models coudl be added over time.
silverblue - Wednesday, July 4, 2012 - linkEnermax NAXN ENP450AWT-B 450W - £60 at Scan:
(Unfortunately, out of stock)
Rasurbo RAP350 350W - £44 inc. delivery on eBay:
The 450W variant - £58 inc. delivery on eBay:
Corsair CX430 V2 430W - from £35 inc. delivery:
You can find FSP Hexa, Aurum and Fortron PSUs quite easily; the Aurum 80 PLUS Gold 500W is £62 inc. delivery.