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Does it matter having a powerful psu in a system that doesnt use all t


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#1
rxkevco

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Hi all.,,
Would it make any difference or create any problems if i fitted a 700 watt psu into a new build pc which wont need anywhere near the 700 watts ?

Only asking cos i have all the parts to make my pc exept the psu, until today, when my mum suprised me with a JEANTECH STORM 700 WATT psu.
My system wont need all that power, , ever (i dont think ), , , but i dont think it will cause any harm will it ?

Would i be right in thinking that regardless of system specs, having a 700 watt psu that isnt using all its power, would be better than a smaller psu using most of its power to run a system ? ?

My system is , , , ,( when i put it together )

ASUS P5Q PRO.

GO Q6600 QUAD CPU.

ASUS V-60 CPU COOLER/FAN.

4GB PC2 8500 RAM running at 1066mhz.

3 X 500GB SATA HARD DRIVES.

2 X IDE DVD DRIVES.

ZALMAN DIGITAL FAN/TEMP CONTROLLER ( FRONT PANEL).

CREATIVE AUDIGY 4 SOUNDCARD.

GE FORCE 8600GTS GRAPHICS CARD.

WIRELESS NETWORK PCI CARD.

I have the JEANTECH STORM 700 WATT modular power supply .

I will be mostly using a firewire audio interface a lot of the time as this pc is going to be a dual purpose internet/email pc, and also a DAW for digital music studio recording using cubase 4, so the power required for that will have to be taken into consideration.

I will be running VISTA PREMIUM 64 BIT.
When running as a DAW, , i wil be using a lot of vsti effects, software synthesizers, samplers and obviuosly cubase 4 itself.



Is the 700 watt psu complete overkill or would this system run smothly with the psu not using even half of its wattage ? ? /
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#2
wannabe1

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Hello rxkevco...

The system will draw only the power it needs from the power supply. Having power in reserve (not being used by the system) will not harm anything and is actually preferable to having a borderline PSU.

The Asus cooler you've chosen isn't all that great, though. I've used several of the Asus CPU Coolers and while they look terrific, they don't do all that great a job. Have a look at the Zalman coolers...both the 9500 series and the 9700 series would give you superior cooling under any performance load.

wannabe1
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#3
rxkevco

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Thanks for that Wanabe,

I dont suppose you know anything about the JEANTECH STORM psu do you ? ? /

I have read some great reveiws online, and it appears to be a great model, , as opposed to their low end other units.

Asking advice on another forum i have been slated and flamed because i have bought one, , they all seem to be saying that it will fry my complete system caose they are poorly manufactured. Been told to avoid jeantech like the plague.

I cant see how it can fry my pc though cos it has all sorts of overvoltage and current protection devices on it ?

I admit freely that i know little about power supplies
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#4
wannabe1

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The JEANTECH STORM is an adequate power supply...not exactly a high end device, but it will do the job. It's ripple voltage is a bit high and the power is not as clean (noise) as some of the higher end units...and they tend to run a little warmer (hence my suggestion for a more efficient cpu cooler), but it should power your system just fine.

I don't really know a whole lot more about them. I prefer Corsair PSU's myself and recommend them highly, but then, one should never look a gift horse in the mouth...if you know what I mean.
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#5
rxkevco

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Thats great, , thanks for your help
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#6
wannabe1

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You are quite welcome. :)
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#7
Jonesey

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It's ripple voltage is a bit high and the power is not as clean (noise) as some of the higher end units...and they tend to run a little warmer (hence my suggestion for a more efficient cpu cooler), but it should power your system just fine.

I don't really know a whole lot more about them. I prefer Corsair PSU's myself and recommend them highly, but then, one should never look a gift horse in the mouth...if you know what I mean.



rxkevco - please take on board what wannabe1 has stated regarding the noise floor of the Jeantech.

Seeing as your system is to function as a high-end DAW, you should be looking to remove ANY source of noise which might find it's way onto your tracks.

The last thing you want to be doing is making pristine, 24-bit recordings only to find they distort.

Also - and this is just a bit of friendly advice, if you haven't bought your DAW software yet, consider going for SONAR.

It's at least as capable as Cubase but has a wonderful user forum where any computer related problems you encounter in the future are usually resolved quite easily.

I don't work for Cakewalk, so I'm not trawling for customers, just giving you the benefit of my experience.
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#8
rxkevco

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Hi Jonesey , ,
Thanks for your input.

On the software front, i have already been using cubase SX3 for some years now and with this new pc ( wich i am building this week ), i will be using CUBASE 4 which i have just upgraded to. In fact, its due to arrive this morning.

With regard to the STORM psu, , i dont know anything about them really, , and when people start talking about noise, and ripple and virtual 12v rails, i must admit i am at a complete loss.

Why will this psu cause noise ? ?

Unfortunatly, if i try to replace this psu, then i will have to take it back to pc world. My mum paid for it at a store in the midlands, , i am now back home in the north east so i can only take it back to swap for something else instore locally and to be honest with you, theres not a lot of choice in pc world.

What is it i should be looking for if i go for a replacement ? ? What spec, , to reduce the noise floor ? ?

Thanks, kev
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#9
rxkevco

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Is this power supply any better than the STORM 700 that i already have, , , ,

http://www.pcworld.c...ormationSection

Here is the full spec of it, ,

http://www.ocztechno...idia_sli_ready_

This is available online, so theoretically, i should be able to return the storm700 to a pc world store, and get a credit note for getting the OCZ one that they only sell online ?
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#10
Jonesey

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To be honest mate, I know more about audio software than I do about PSU's - and if your already a Cubase user then fair play to you - learning a new one is a fairly steep learning curve.

Hopefully wannabe1 cna chip in with some noise figures for the Storm.

It MIGHT be that they're low enough so as not to cause any problems with your recordings - I simply don't know.

I do know however, that any noise induced onto a single audio track may well be multiplied 30/40/50 times, depending on how ambitious your audio projects are.

Have fun, whatever you do.
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#11
rxkevco

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for the technical minded out there , , ,

The jeantech website lists the following specs for ripple/noise


+5v 70mv

+12v rail 1 120mv
+12v rail 2 120mv
+12v rail 3 120mv

-12v 150mv
+5vs 70mv
+3.3mv 70mv

ALL HAVE A REG LOAD OF +/- 5%


Apparently according to the ATX psu guidlines the low +5v lines ripple shouldnt exeed 50mv and its 70mv according to the psu specs, .
And, , the -12v rail should be 120mv instead of the listed 150mv.

All the other specs are within the guidlines as specified in this document. Ripple % can be found in chapter 3.2.6 .
This document was pushed onto me by someone on the overclockers forum, and has been the man culprit in slating this psu.
Also, , someone else posted to the same topic that the storm 700 isnt even 700 watt at all, , ,nd worked out some calculation that said its max otput was 480watts ? ?

Its all very confusing

http://www.formfacto..._public_br2.pdf


Can anyone tell me if these differences in ripple are going to make any difference to either the safety of the computers components, , or just as importantly, , the quality of recordings made on this pc ? ? ?

This is all a minefield to me and is duble dutch , , , can someone explain it all in simpler terms.
Google is my friend,, but cant explain this ripple/noise question in relation to a DAW.
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#12
wannabe1

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As I stated earlier, the psu you've chosen is a bit noisy.

In looking at the specs for the JeanTech Storm, it appears to be roughly similar to an Ultra PSU I tested some time ago. For a graphical representation of the "noise" I referenced, have a look at the graphs of power output in this Review where the Ultra is on the right, the Corsair on the left. The Ultra is noisy when compared to the Corsair, but is still not too bad when all is considered.

Most power supply manufacturers rate their power supplies using peak output values. That is, the psu is capable of providing 700 watts of power under heavy load. However, that 700 watts may not be available on the rails under a lighter load and it may, in fact, only show 480 watts on a tester at idle...that does not mean it's not capable of providing the peak power on demand.

The problem with a "noisy" psu is that the noise is amplified as the voltage amplitude is increased. The more power the system draws, the higher the voltage fluctuations will be, so starting out with a stable output will provide a more stable voltage at higher loads.

Unless you are going to be doing some real critical computing or striving for professional quality recordings, I think the JeanTech will probably do just fine, but there are better choices available. If you do want the benefits of a more stable PSU, look to Corsair...they are the cleanest PSU's I've tested to date.
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#13
rxkevco

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Thanks wannabe, thats a bit clearer, , i think !

So , ,would i be right in saying that if my full system with all its components and an pro external sundcard only requires, lets say 200 watts to power em all up, , then that leaves lots of heardroom and isnt a big drain on the psu, , in effect, little fluctuation under the light load it will be under ? ?

So, , if i am using a cpu or ram dependant peice of software , , that puts a drain on the processor and ram, , , NOT on the psu ? ?

Or when the cpu or ram are working hard does the psu require more power , , ? ?meaning that there is a higher stress on the psu reqiring more power and therefore a greater risk of ripple fluctuations coming into the equation ? ?

If its the former statement then i shouldnt have anything to worry about should i ?
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#14
wannabe1

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Unfortunately, it's the latter statement that is closer to the truth.

And when the hardware demands extra power, the power supply must provide more than the device demands in order to overcome resistance.
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#15
Jonesey

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You can take the Firewire interface out of your calculations as these normally ship with their own power supply.

They CAN draw their own power from the USB bus, but this facility is usually reserved for use with laptops.
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