Cooler Master GX 550W Power Supply Review

👤by David Mitchelson Comments 📅13-03-10
Performance
Our testing methodology for testing Power Supply Units is limited to the multi-meter to show each rails performance due to us not having access to an ATE load tester. Although this does constrain us slightly we can still ascertain how strong those rails are and give the unit a good assessment when we feature it in one of our builds. The way the testing will run is simple, voltages will be observed at idle wattage and then the system will be loaded using OCCT and again the wattage/voltages will be monitored. This should give us a good indication of how the GX will perform under gaming stresses and beyond. The OCCT PSU load test is very severe indeed and a good representation of testing.

Test System
CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E2160 (3.5GHz)
Motherboard: ASUS P5KC
RAM: 2GB OCZ Platinum DDR2
GPU: MSI 8800GTX
PSU: Cooler Master GX 550W



The above results do look good, the minor rails hardly budge at all under the most intense of usage. 0.02 on the 3.3V rail and just 0.03 on the 5V rail isn’t bad going at all. When we come to the major rail however the voltage different is quite a lot bigger. 1V to be exact which may not sound massive but I would have expected it to be a little stronger. With the voltages on the PSU we are wanting to find the closest values to the actual rail. So for example we want to see values that are as close to 12V on the 12V rail as possible.

Don’t get me wrong this is a powerful unit and it does offer some great performance, but compared to other units of similar rating it falls behind slightly.

Noise
When you’re on the hunt for a PSU not only do you want something strong and stable but you want something that will operate with as little noise output as possible (unless you are strange and like humming noises?!). With the Cooler Master GX there are absolutely no worries in this department, there statement in the features specification ‘Ultra-silent operation with intelligent 120mm fan speed control’ holds true to its meaning, its barely audible both under idle and loaded states. The fan RPM did increase when I pushed it on with OCCT but noticing this by means of noise isn’t evident and this is great news since there are at least 5 fans in most systems.


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