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Engelking Fanless PSU 8/10. Date Posted 03/09/2002. by Saeed Amen.

I think I have secured an exclusive here, reviewing this PSU. I would like to say thanks to Engelking for helping with this scoop. Just looking at the PSU it seems relatively normal, apart from the huge heatsink on the back, designed to dissapate heat. At around 250 Euros (about 250 dollars) it is probably the most expensive PSU you can buy at the moment. The reason it is so expensive is because it is designed to run fanless. However, if the temperature becomes to hot, there is a fan which switches on automatically. When the fan is off, it is completely silent, but when the fan is on, it probably the quietest PSU I have ever heard - even slightly quieter than the TruePower PSU I tested last month. In terms of connectors it has 5 Molex drive connectors as well as miscellaneous ones (5V, floppy one etc.) It also has a fan monitor cable that plugs into the motherboard - this enables the PSU to be "thermo-controlled". Like most premium PSU it has a power button, that you can use just in case your computer crashes (ie. quite often!)

The manual recommends you need case fans as well to accompany the PSU. I found without case fans not only did the PSU fan regularly come on, but the PSU ended up heating the area around it considerably by several degrees. But you can only plug in ordinary fans at full speed to this PSU (it recommends plugging them to the 5V connectors, but most fans won't fit that). In such a case the computer becomes very noisey and you lose the advantage of using such a quiet power supply. You could get round this by buying special smart fans, that increase speed as temperature increases. Also you have to bear in mind I was testing it with my dual Athlon machine which has two Thunderbird Athlon 1.2 GHz processor, which draw a lot of current and run quite hot. I suspect the PSU would be far cooler in a single processor Pentium 4/Athlon XP machine.

The PSU is rated at 300W. Given that it drove my system, I am sure that 99% of users should be happy with this power output. If you buy the Engelking, you will have made a good choice, but the high price results in the 8/10 rating. Had it been cheaper I may have given it 10/10. Before doing so, you must however, make sure that the rest of your computer is cooled properly and quietly. With a combination of silent fans, you should be able to build the quietest computer possible. Also it might take a bit of playing around with fan positions to ensure that the temperature around the PSU and CPU remain low. Basically this is the ultimate PSU for the user who wants a quiet machine. If you can't stretch to this PSU, I would recommend the Antec TruePower330, which is nearly as quiet, and also lets you put ordinary fans on it (which can be thermo-controlled).