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Antec TruePower 330 PSU and Antec Fans 10/10. Date Posted 24/08/2002.

When most people buy a power supply they want it to be reliable and be powerful enough for their system. I am one of those people. I also dislike power supplies that sound like jets taking off. This Antec TruePower 330 PSU is rated as pumping out 330 Watts of power. This is more than most power supplies, which tend to supply under 300 Watts. I found the Antec more than powerful enough. It managed to easily power my dual Athlon system (with two 1.2GHz Athlon Thunderbird processors - notoriously power hungry beasts), so it should be able to power just about any processor you throw at it. It is officially both P4 and AMD Athlon compatable, which is reassuring. There is also a switch on the power supply to turn it off, for example if your computer crashes and the main power button is not responsive. I wish more manufacturers would follow Antec and do this, since it is frankly unacceptable to be unplugging main power supply everytime the computer crashes! It does have several special features including dedicated circuits for different rated appliance (eg. one for 3V components, one for 5V etc.)

Installation of the PSU is relatively simple, especially given that I have never actually installed one! There are more than enough connectors for even the most demanding users. Every connector is gold plated, for higher conductivity. The motherboard power cable is surrounded by special material, I was not too sure what this was for. There are also two special system fan connectors and a 3 pin connector, which plugs into the motherboard. Strictly speaking you do not need to plug the 3 pin connector into the motherboard. However, if you don't you won't get the benefit of the TruePower system on your system fans. The idea of TruePower is very simple, it regulates the speed of your fans by monitoring the system temperature. However, the manual specifies that you should only attach ordinary fans to the "fan only connector". If you already have thermally controlled fans (like Antec Smartfans) they should be put on the ordinary power connectors. The power supply itself has two fans and these benefit from TruePower, so they spin as slowly as possible, only increasing speed when they need too. This is clever than other fans or PSUs which require the user to manually change the fan speed. In addition having two fans (rather than the usual one) should improve the cooling of the PSU. The fan on the inside of the case also contributes to cooling the case, as well as the PSU.

I also tested out the PSU with some Antec 80x80mm fans. These are ordinary fans, and are good value for money, but don't have any ground breaking features. They certainly look similar to other fans I've tested. You can also buy transparent versions with LEDs, perfect for those of you with window cases. The PSU actually boasts one of these transparent fans. If you are already buying this PSU, there is not much need spending extra money on special thermally controlled fans!

The PSU is incredibly quiet. Antec call this Low Noise Technology.. I can it virtually NO NOISE! Coupled with some Zalman Flower Coolers, I could bearly hear my system. The previous PSU was very noisy, and hence the difference was very noticeable. You can only just about hear a slight whining sound which indicates the PSU is on. At 50 pounds the PSU not the cheapest around, but it is worth every penny just the silence! I can now play back MP3s on my computer without being distracted, or watch DVDs. If you value silence you'll almost certainly value the TruePower 330.