Want To Know How A PSU Is Made? be quiet! Take You Inside The Story
"Power Supply Units are the one component you should never skimp on." If there's one piece of advice everyone should absorb and put to good use when speccing out their new PC, this would be it. Poor quality power supplies often exhibit unacceptable voltage ripple, drastic voltage drops when loaded, or substandard manufacturing techniques which don't compensate for temperature variations within the unit during long-term operation; worse-still, a PSU failure could take out every other component it's providing power to. Or worse.
That's not to say you should choose a PSU overspecced for the system's needs - there's no value to a 1000W PSU if your system in a single-GPU gaming rig for instance - but rather that quality absolutely matters. In both the short and long term PSUs from recognised and well respected brands that use established quality control methods are well worth the investment.
A great example of thoroughness in testing and quality control is detailed in this month's be quiet! INSIDE article, part of their (far too irregular) blog which details core business decisions they've made in the design and manufacturing processes for their products. The article takes us through the manufacture of a Straight Power 10, a premium low-noise PSU for mainstream and gaming use that conforms to 80PLUS Gold certification, from circuit board through to shipped PSU.
It's clear that standards for the Straight Power 10 are rigorous indeed. Although the complexity of assembly is cited as the major reason why many steps are still performed by hand, the 'hands on' approach also affords be quiet! the opportunity to inspect and test at almost every stage. Whether it be the quality of the solder joints, or the firmness which which a SMD component is located, a PSU is checked and re-checked constantly for flaws and corrected early in the chain. Even modular connectors are subject to these high standards, requiring both a test of the physical and electrical connection. There is no room for mistakes.
So, if you've ever wondered why a £95 700W low-noise PSU is a better value proposition than the £35 750W PSU you've seen in your local high-street retailer, consider this article. And consider all the steps which might have been skipped to cut costs down that far.
More be quiet INSIDER articles can be found here, and they're well worth a read.