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Seasonic X-Series 460W Fanless Power Supply Review

Rating: 9.0.

If you are building a new media center, or just want a new system which is as quiet as possible, then opting for a range of passively cooled products is the best course of action. Today we are looking at the Seasonic X-Series 460W Fanless Power supply which is a pure modular design with 80 Plus Gold Certification.


Special Features –

  • 80PLUS® Gold Certified Super High Efficiency
  • Full Modular Cabling Design
  • Fanless- 0dBA
  • Patented DC Connector Module with Integrated VRM [Voltage Regulator Module]
  • DC to DC Converter Design
  • Conductive Polymer Aluminum Solid Capacitors
  • Highly Reliable 105℃ Japanese Brand Capacitors
  • Tight Voltage Regulation [±3%]
  • Active Power Factor Correction [99% PF Typical]
  • High +12V Output
  • High Current Gold Plated Terminals
  • Dual Sided PCB Layout
  • Ultra Ventilation [Honeycomb Structure]
  • Multi-GPU Technologies Supported
  • All-in-One DC Cabling Design
  • Easy Swap Connector
  • Universal AC Input [Full Range]
  • 5 Years Warranty

The Seasonic X-Series 460W Fanless Power Supply is supplied in a dark coloured, subtle looking box which features the output capacity top right.

Our review sample contained some Seasonic branded Haribo chewy sweets which was a nice touch – we don’t think these are supplied in a retail box, but we could be wrong. The box contains a bag with all the cables, next to the power supply itself.

The bundle contains a heavy duty dual pouch storage bag, some literature on the product and a manual, a regional specific power cable and cable tidies. There is also a case sticker and mounting screws for the system build phase.

I really do like the storage bag as it can comfortably hold many more cables than those supplied. No cramming cables into an undersized bag, which is refreshing.

Cable Connectors
ATX Connector (20+4) x1 (600mm)
CPU 4+4 pin x1 (650mm)
PCI E 8 pin (6 pin +2) x2 (600mm)
Sata power connectors x3 (550mm + 150mm + 150mm)
Sata power connectors x2 (350mm + 150mm)
Peripheral 4 pin (molex) x3 (500mm + 150mm + 150mm)
Peripheral 4 pin (molex) x2 (350mm + 150mm)

We appreciate the extra length 4+4 pin CPU power cable which runs to 650mm. The cables run to mixed sizes to suit a variety of cases and help to improve routing. Seasonic haven’t cut corners with the cabling, sleeving them all.

The X-Series 460W Fanless power supply is shipped in a soft black, felt bag to protect the surface during shipping. This can be stored in the box for reuse.

Seasonic attach a warning cover to the power supply, ensuring that it is installed in the right direction (ventilation cover facing up). Being a passive design means that the heat will rise and if it isn’t installed with the vents upwards, the heat will not expel correctly.

Seasonic have populated the chassis with vents on the side panels, to aid with air flow. The paint work is excellent and doesn’t mark easily.

The front of the power supply is completely vented, with a power switch and plug set to the side.

The other side of the power supply has a venting hole at the side, with the modular connectors , all clearly labeled.

Silver Power SP S460FL
DC Output
+3.3V
+5V
+12V
-12V
+5Vsb
Max Output
20A
20A
38A
0.5A
2.5A
Total Power 100W 456W 6W 12.5W
460W

The Seasonic X-Series 460W can deliver 38A to the +12V.

We have seen this Seasonic design before, when we reviewed the Silver Power SP S460FL supply back in April, this year. There are several rows of small gold/bronze coloured heatsinks. As this is an efficient 80 Plus gold certified power supply they don’t need to be too large. This results in a clean layout with plenty of space for air flow. The fan regulation is completely removed as would be expected.

An AC Line filter and receptacle which continues with a single X capacitor. There are two coils, an X capacitor, two Y capacitors and a MOV.

The primary capacitor is by Nippon Chemi Con and is rated 390 uF, 420V at 105c. All other capacitors are also by Nippon Chemi Con, which is always good to see.

On this page we present some super high resolution images of the product taken with the 24.5MP Nikon D3X camera and 24-70mm ED lens. These will take much longer to open due to the dimensions, especially on slower connections. If you use these pictures on another site or publication, please credit Kitguru.net as the owner/source. You can right click and ‘save as’ to your computer to view later.

Additional technical assistance: Peter McFarland and Jeremy Price.

Correctly testing power supplies is a complex procedure and KitGuru have configured a test bench which can deliver up to a 2,000 watt DC load. Due to public requests we have changed our temperature settings recently – previously we rated with ambient temperatures at 25C, we have increased ambient temperatures by 10c (to 35c) in our environment to greater reflect warmer internal chassis conditions.

We use combinations of the following hardware:
• SunMoon SM-268
• CSI3710A Programmable DC load (+3.3V and +5V outputs)
• CSI3711A Programmable DC load (+12V1, +12V2, +12V3, and +12V4)
• Extech Power Analyzer
• Extech MultiMaster MM570 digital multimeter
• SkyTronic DSL 2 Digital Sound Level Meter (6-130dBa)
• Digital oscilloscope (20M S/s with 12 Bit ADC)
• Variable Autotransformer, 1.4 KVA

DC Output Load Regulation

Combined

DC Load

+3.3V
+5V
+12V
+5VSB
A
V
A
V
A
V
A
V
75W
1.02
3.39
1.46
5.05
4.89
12.21
0.50
5.03
150W
2.44
3.36
3.16
5.03
9.71
12.17
1.00
5.02
250W
3.66
3.33
5.18
5.01
16.54
12.15
1.50
5.01
350W
4.95
3.32
7.06
4.99
23.53
12.12
2.00
5.00
455W
6.77
3.28
9.18
4.98
32.78
12.09
2.50
5.00

Load regulation is excellent and all output maintain close to reference results.

Seasonic X-Series 460W Fanless Maximum Load
492.6

We managed to push the supply to 492.6 watts before it would shut down safely.

Next we want to try Cross Loading. This basically means loads which are not balanced. If a PC for instance needs 500W on the +12V outputs but something like 30W via the combined 3.3V and +5V outputs then the voltage regulation can fluctuate badly.

Cross Load Testing +3.3V +5V +12V -12V +5VSB
A V A V A V A V A V
386W 2.0 3.38 2.0 5.05 30.0 12.08 0.2 -12.12 0.50 5.02
171W 18.0 3.30 12.0 4.99 4.0 12.19 0.2 -12.07 0.50 5.00

Our first test placed a heavy load (30a) on the +12 V output with a light load on the remaining voltages. The supply delivered excellent results across out of the output range.

We then used an oscilloscope to measure AC ripple and noise present on the DC outputs. We set the oscilloscope time base to check for AC ripple at both high and low ends of the spectrum.

ATX12V V2.2 specification for DC output ripple and noise is defined in the ATX 12V power supply design guide.

ATX12V Ver 2.2 Noise/Ripple Tolerance
Output
Ripple (mV p-p)
+3.3V
50
+5V
50
+12V1
120
+12V2
120
-12V
120
+5VSB
50

Obviously when measuring AC noise and ripple on the DC outputs the cleaner (less recorded) means we have a better end result. We measured this AC signal amplitude to see how closely the unit complied with the ATX standard.

AC Ripple (mV p-p)
DC Load +3.3V +5V +12V 5VSB
75W 5 5 10 5
150W 10 5 15 10
250W 10 5 15 15
350W 10 10 20 15
455W 15 10 25 15

An incredible set of results and actually some of the best we have seen to date. Only 25mV at full load from the +12v. The other output are just as impressive, peaking at 10mV/15mV from the +3.3V and +5V respectively.

Efficiency (%)
75W
87.34
150W
88.53
250W
92.15
350W
91.48
455W
90.79

Again, very good results from the Silver Power supply, peaking just over 92 % efficiency at 50 percent load.

We take the issue of noise very seriously at KitGuru and this is why we have built a special home brew system as a reference point when we test noise levels of various components. Why do this? Well this means we can eliminate secondary noise pollution in the test room and concentrate on components we are testing. It also brings us slightly closer to industry standards, such as DIN 45635.

Today to test the Power Supply we have taken it into our acoustics room environment and have set our SkyTronic DSL 2 Digital Sound Level Meter (6-130dBa) one meter away from the unit. We have no other fans running so we can effectively measure just the noise from the unit itself.

As this can be a little confusing for people, here are various dBa ratings in with real world situations to help describe the various levels.

KitGuru noise guide
10dBA – Normal Breathing/Rustling Leaves
20-25dBA – Whisper
30dBA – High Quality Computer fan
40dBA – A Bubbling Brook, or a Refrigerator
50dBA – Normal Conversation
60dBA – Laughter
70dBA – Vacuum Cleaner or Hairdryer
80dBA – City Traffic or a Garbage Disposal
90dBA – Motorcycle or Lawnmower
100dBA – MP3 Player at maximum output
110dBA – Orchestra
120dBA – Front row rock concert/Jet Engine
130dBA – Threshold of Pain
140dBA – Military Jet takeoff/Gunshot (close range)
160dBA – Instant Perforation of eardrum

Noise (dBA)
75W
//
150W
//
250W
//
350W
//
455W //

No fan, so therefore not relevant for this article. No complaints here !

Temperature (c)
Intake
Exhaust
75W
35
40
150W
36
43
250W
39
48
350W
42
54
455W
45
59

The high 80 Plus Gold Efficiency and heatsinks ensure that the temperature differential is maintained to a maximum of 14c at full load. Impressive results.

Maximum load
Efficiency
492.6W
89.26

Pushing the PSU above its rated limits generates an efficiency level of around 89%. This is not a viable ‘real world’ situation, but its interesting nonetheless.

The X-Series 460W Fanless Power Supply is another quality design from Seasonic, which we have seen used in other partner products such as the Silver Power SP S460FL a couple of months ago.

The bundle is particularly strong, specifically the modular cabling with dual pouch storage bag. Seasonic also bundle a plethora of felt and plastic cable ties to ensure the system build is as tidy as possible. We aren’t sure that the end customer will get the Seasonic branded Haribo chewy sweet packets, but they gave us a smile when we opened the box.

The modular cables are high grade, with sleeving to enhance the appearance inside a quality system build. The 4+4 pin CPU power cable runs to 650mm and will be ideal for the largest of chassis environments.

The power supply is well protected during shipping, thanks to the sculpted foam and soft, black felt bag. The paint work is excellent, and the modular cable connectors are nicely laid out and clearly labelled.

Technically, the design is exceptional. Noise suppression is as good as we have seen, peaking at just 25mV on the +12V rail at full load. The +3.3V and +5V output are just as impressive, peaking at 10mV/15mV respectively.

The fanless operation and pure modular design makes this power supply ideal for a media center build, or high grade, silent office machine. The excellent efficiency performance also ensures that the system can be left on 24/7 without excessively draining power at the socket.

This is a specialised design and there will be always be a price premium, you can buy it from Scan for £116.95 inc vat.

Pros:

  • Great finish.
  • Strong bundle.
  • Good cabling.
  • Pure modular design.
  • Silent.
  • Technically very capable.
  • High Efficiency.

Cons:

  • Expensive.

Kitguru says: Seasonic rarely disappoint, and this particular design will find a home in many a high grade media center and server system.


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