Testing – Differential Temperature and Noise Levels

The differential temperature across all three power supplies was calculated by subtracting the ambient room air temperature (T in) from the temperature of the warm exhaust air flowing out of the power supply (T out).  Thermocouples were placed at the air inlet and exhaust outlet of each power supply.  The ambient room air temperature was 24ºC (75ºF) +/- 0.5ºC during testing.

T in = temperature of air entering power supply

T out = temperature of air exhausting from power supply

ΔT = T out – T in

All three Seasonic power supplies use a temperature-controlled fan that speeds up as the load (internal heat generation) increases.

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Sound pressure level readings were taken 3′ in front of the PSU under test in an otherwise quiet room.  Each power supply was placed on a foam rubber mouse pad during testing.  The ambient noise level was ~30 dBA.  The sound level meter used for these tests is only calibrated down to 35 dBA.  All readings below this were recorded as <35 dBA.  In my opinion this is very quiet and would not be noticed over normal case fan and hard disk drive noise.

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To my ears, anything over 40 dBA becomes noticeable and must be considered a potential noise source.  The two Super ‘Silencer’ power supplies were quite noisy when operated under a moderately heavy load requiring the single 80 mm fan to speed up to maintain adequate cooling. 

The Super Tornado on the other hand was nice and quiet even while operating continuously under a moderately heavy load.


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