Reviews - Sunbeamtech NUUO 550W
Sample Provided by: Sunbeam Tech (By jonny on Fri, Sep-01-2006)

Page 1 -

Sunbeamtech is a company that got it's start making cold cathode flourescent light kits. Somehow, they got themselves into power supplies. Today, I'm taking a look at one of their most popular units: The NUUO 550W.

Above and below are pictures of the Sunbeamtech box.

Below is the inside of the NUUO 550W power supply's box. On the left side of the box, is where the modular cables and "control panel" are kept. On the right, we can see the power supply wrapped in bubble wrap and sandwiched between two pieces of foam.

Documentation sits on top of the contents of the box. Documentation includes a manual, a piece of paper about the power supply's thermal sensors for the "control panel" and a warning that essentially tells the user that if you plug a modular connector in backwards, you're going to get an early 4th of July fireworks show (or Chinese new year depending on your location.)

The Sunbeamtech has a unique look to it. It's a very shiny black steel, but somehow they "brushed" the finish giving it something of an aluminum look. There's a 120MM fan on the bottom and an 80MM fan on the rear.

Above is a picture of the NUUO's modular interface. The four connectors on the left are all peripheral connectors for the 4-pin Molex connectors. In the photo, they have their dust caps installed. On the top row, the two connectors to the right of the two Molex connectors is the ATX/EPS+12V connector and the single PCI-e connector. Below these two are two SATA connectors, also covered by their dust caps. To the right of these eight connectors are some smaller connectors we'll touch on a bit later.

The cables are all very neatly sleeved, except for the PCI-e cable and one Molex to Molex labeled "VGA." These two cables have a "snake skin" type of sleeve and ferrite cores very similar to a Topower built unit.

Type of connector: Sunbeamtech NUUO 550W
ATX connector 20+4
2 x 2 12V connectors 1
2 x 3 PCIe 2*
8-pin Xeon/EPS connector 1
6-pin Xeon/AUX connector 0
5.25" Drive connectors

10

3.5" Drive connectors 2**
SATA Drive power connectors 4
Fan only connectors (thermostatically controlled 12V only) 0
* Only one PCI-e connector is included. A 4-pin Molex adapter is included for a second video card.
** Two floppy connectors are included on one Molex splitter.

Sunbeamtech NUUO 550W
+3.3V +5V +12V1 +12V2 -12V +5VSB
32A 36A 20A 18A 0.8A 2.5A
Max Combined Watts 280W 360W 9.6W 12.5W
540W 22W
550W

Now let's take a look at the Sunbeamtech "control panel." This device is actually pretty neat. Supposedly, the knob adjusts the speed of the PSU fan and the display tells you the temperature inside the PSU.

The "control panel" is what the five connectors on the front of the power supply is for.

The connectors, listed from top to bottom, are "PSUT", "Sink T", "Case", "12025" and "8015".

The "PSUT" sensor is by the exhaust fan. The "Sink T" sensor is actually on the PSU's rectifier heatsink. The "Case" connector is just a power connector for an optional case fan. The "12025" connector is so the "control panel" can control the speed of the 120MMx25MM fan and the "8015" connector is so the "control panel" can control the speed of the 80MMx15MM fan.

Below is the functioning result. I preferred controlling the speed of the 80MM fan since it was the fan on the outside edge of the PSU and most of the noise from the 120MM was baffled by the PSU itself. It would be nice to have a future model of this power supply with a 5.25" bay control panel that would control all three fan headers and can read both intake, exhaust and rectifier temperatures.

For testing power supplies, I use a SunMoon power supply tester. Essentially, it's a machine specifically made to put up to 10 different static loads on up to 10 different rails of an ATX12V PSU at one time.

The first test is done with the power supply sitting in an open case, almost at room temperature. So the results of the "room temperature" load tests are...

Results from Sunbeamtech NUUO 550W COLD load tests
+3.3V +5V +12V1 +12V2 Watts Efficiency P.F. Intake Exhaust
Simulated system load tests
2A 4A 3A 3A 113.6W 74% .64 23°C 25°C
3.43V 5.14V 12.16V 12.17V
5A 8A 6A 6A 216.7W 78% .70 23°C 26°C
3.41V 5.11V 12.14V 12.13V
10A 12A 9A 9A 326W 77% .74 23°C 26°C
3.39V 5.07V 12.12V 12.11V
12A 16A 12A 12A 424.3W 76% .76 23°C 27°C
3.38V 5.04V 12.08V 12.07V
15A 20A 15A 15A 525.1W 74% .75 23°C 29°C
3.36V 5.01V 12.04V 12.03V

Not bad! Only a .15V drop on the 12V rail. I was surprised how high the 3.3V started out since the 3.3V rail is not supposed to be over 3.465V. But the drop to 3.36V still showed regulation was under 2%.

Unfortunately, this PSU has no power factor correction and efficiency was only mediocre.

I also like to see how a power supply handles being hit with a maximum load on the 12V rails while the 3.3V and 5V have relatively low loads. To do this, I put 15A on each of the 12V rails, reduced the 3.3V rail to only 3A and reduced the 5V rail to only 4A. This dropped both of the 12V rails to 11.90V, which is still well within ATX12V specification.

Now for the hot box tests.

The "hot box" is nothing more than the power supply running in a sealed up Ultra Wizard case. Only the side panel CPU vent has been replaced with an intake hose and an 80MM intake fan. On the other end of the hose is the exhaust of the load tester.

Results from Sunbeamtech NUUO 550W HOT load tests
+3.3V +5V +12V1 +12V2 Watts Efficiency P.F. Intake Exhaust
Simulated system load tests
2A 4A 3A 3A 113.6W 74% .64 30°C 35°C
3.43V 5.14V 12.16V 12.17V
5A 8A 6A 6A 216.7W 78% .70 30°C 35°C
3.41V 5.11V 12.14V 12.13V
10A 12A 9A 9A 326W 77% .74 32°C 36°C
3.39V 5.07V 12.12V 12.11V
12A 16A 12A 12A 424.3W 76% .76 33°C 37°C
3.38V 5.04V 12.08V 12.07V
15A 20A 15A 15A 525.1W 74% .75 36°C 40°C
3.36V 5.01V 12.04V 12.03V

We see little change going from the room temperature tests to the hot box. Even the exhaust temperatures were fairly low. And despite having the fan controller set to "auto", the fans on the power supply were not very loud.

Now we've come to the part of the review where we test ripple. Ripple is what you call the small fluctuations in voltage that happens every ms or so that may not affect performance, but may kill your components in time.

Ripple is measured at the load by an USB Instruments Stingray DS1M12 . Instead of using the Stingray with probes to measure ripple, I actually use the Stingray as a medium between the data being spit out by the SunMoon load tester and my laptop. Each change in voltage is collected and reported every .2ms. The time divide on the graphs is 2ms (every square being 2ms) The voltage scale on the graph is .05V, or 50mV.

NUUO
550W
+3.3V +5V +12V1 +12V2
Test 1
Test 2
Test 3
Test 4
Test 5

Ripple appears to be non-existant on all rails during all loads. That's very impressive.

Let's do the autopsy now...

First we have the overhead shot. If the E239028 wasn't enough, the "AD" on the 12V transformer tells us this is built by Andyson.

Once again, we see Andyson using Fuhjyyu capacitors.

Below we see where all of the leads are soldered down to the secondary side of the PSU.

Above we have the back side of the modular interface. Below, we see the 80MM fan. The hub has nothing more than a black sticker on it, but I'm fairly certain that it's a Young Lin Xing since all of the Andyson's I've seen in the past have used them and it's the only fan I've seen that's 15MM thick and has 11 blades.

Note the crack at the 2 o'clock position. This was causing the fan to vibrate when it was spinning at full load. I had to loosen the fan to get it not to make any noise.

Let's go ahead and score this thing....

Performance (weight of 40%) gets an 8. The Sunbeamtech has good load regulation, hardly any ripple, survived a crossload.. but it doesn't have power factor correction and efficiency was mediocre.

Aesthetics (weight of 10%) is 9. The finish is nice, the cables are nice. But "nice" is about all I can say. But it's far from "ugly" or "bland."

Value (weight of 30%) score is a 10. The most amazing thing about this power supply is that it's under $80. It's a 550W under $80. It's a modular power supply for under $80. And that price includes the fan controller and temp monitor!

For functionality (weight of 20%,) I'm giving the NUUO 550W a 9. It's modular, a compact size and comes with a handy fan controller and temperature monitor. What keeps the PSU from a perfect score is the fact that there's only one native PCI-e connector and floppy connectors can only be added by using an adapter.

Overall, the Sunbeam NUUO 550W gets a score of "9" and that means the NUUO 550W is "jonnyGURU Recommended."

Performance 8
Aesthetics 9
Value 10
Functionality 9
Total Score 9

SUMMARY:

Not every power supply is perfect, but not all of us need a perfect power supply. Sometimes, a mere 550W is all we need. What's important is that the power supply we choose to supply that power provides stable and clean power. The Sunbeamtech NUUO 550W does, and gives us many practical features and all at a very fair price.

The Good....

  • Modular
  • Nice cables and connectors
  • Nice finish
  • Solid rails
  • "Control panel" works as advertised
  • Awesome price!

The Bad....

  • No real complaints!

The Mediocre....

  • No PFC
  • Mediocre efficiency

 
 

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