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Reviews - Featured Reviews: Power
Written by Olin Coles   
Sunday, 09 September 2007
Table of Contents: Page Index
Antec TruePower Quattro 850W Modular PSU TPQ-850
Closer Look: Exterior Design
Closer Look: Exterior Details
Closer Look: Cables and Wiring
Testing Voltage Ripple and Regulation
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Antec TPQ-850

Last year the Antec TP3-650 TruePower Trio was still making waves in the market, offering 650W of power for an unbeatable price. This year, Antec has returned with a newly designed and very improved power supply unit: the TruePower Quattro. Available to gamers and hardware enthusiasts in need of either 850 or 1000 watts of power output, the new TPQ-850 and TPQ-1000 are poised to energize even the most power-hungry system. Benchmark Reviews has tested the AC voltage ripple and DC power regulation of many top-end power supplies over the past months, and now it's time to see how the Antec TruePower Quattro 850W PSU TPQ-850 compares to the field of competition in this hardware review.

Not long after the TP3-650 was loosing steam, 1.0 kilowatt power supply units were first hitting the market. Around that same time, people were testing their SLi and CrossFire setups, and with rumor of Quad-SLi later becoming a reality it seemed like everyone would be using this much power into the future. Looking back, I am thankful the motherboard manufacturers essentially killed this idea, since it really seems ridiculous to need four video cards for anything.

Certainly by now we can all agree that the power supply unit is the single most important part of any computer. Regardless of the system or purpose there is a given rule: whether it is a simple workstation with integrated components or an advanced gaming system with newest technology available, everything requires power to operate. As anyone who has suffered the failure of a low-end power supply will tell you: not all power supply units (PSU's) are created equal, and looks really don't mean a thing.

Antec TruePower Quattro 850W PSU TPQ-850

Antec says: You could search the four corners of the earth for a stable and reliable power supply, but actually you need to look no further than Antec’s TruePower Quattro! Available in 850 and 1000 Watts, Quattro is more compact than most competing power supplies of the same wattage, yet ideally suited for handling the most demanding system specs. TruePower Quattro is 80PLUS certified which means that Quattro consumes about 33% less energy than many equivalent power supplies with the same power output. Four 12V rails increase your system stability by letting you distribute your power more than ever before. Comes with four PCI-E connectors for powering one (or even two) of the newest generation of video cards. All modular cables are sleeved and labeled to give your system a clean and professional look-while the racing stripe paint job will add some extra style.

TruePower Quattro Features

  • Available in 850W and 1000W
  • Up to 85% efficient
  • Active Power Factor Correction (PFC) helps reduce electrical waste
  • Accurate power rating allows TruePower Quattro to deliver its full rated power (24 hours a day rated at 50ºC)
  • Supports EPS12V v2.91 and ATX12V systems
  • Universal Input, automatically adjusts for 100V to 240V power grids
  • (2) 8/6-pin PCI-E connectors and (2) 6-pin connectors for PCI-Express graphics cards
  • Heavy duty protection circuitry prevents damage resulting from short circuits (SCP), over voltages (OVP), under voltages (UVP), and over current (OCP)
  • Gold plated connectors for superior conductivity
  • AQ5 – Antec Quality five-year parts and labor warranty

Next generation platforms and high performance graphics cards are essential to modern gamers and hardware enthusiasts, just as much as the new software designed to use them. Complete with four available PCI-Express cables (two are 6-pin and two are 8/6-pin) and eight total serial ATA connectors, the Antec TruePower Quattro 850W PSU TPQ-850 is built to provide sufficient output to power demanding GPU teams and quad-core system setups. With a sustained output of 850W over the four +12V rails to provide uniform distribution of power, the TPQ-850 is very capable of driving today's highest-end systems.

With these kinds of features, this unit will have no problem accommodating the needs of bleeding-edge technology for years to come. Although I believe only the most hardcore gamers would ever call upon this much power to feed their energy-thirsty team of video cards, that doesn't stop manufacturers from giving others the opportunity for expansion if it were ever necessary. With more connections and power than any modern computer could consume, we will do our best to offer perspective on the DC voltage regulation and AC current ripple.

Antec TruePower Quattro 850W PSU TPQ-850

Benchmark Reviews has seen some major changes within the power supply industry over the past year. Even in such a limited purpose industry, somehow fads manage to come into existence. At one point, the number of rails a PSU offered was key to media hype. At another point, you could see everyone pushing for the highest watts in their new product. I can't forget how modular power supplies, with the assortment of cables and interfaces, also shared some time in the limelight.

The latest trend seemed to be 80-Plus efficiency, but since most PSU's are at least this efficient the label has lost meaning. And then without any warning, it was as if every company manufacturing power supply units suddenly decided that they could win the battle for industry dominance by combining all of the above features, and add a nice paint job or mirror finish for good measure. The new generation of power supplies has begun to amp up the competition for placement in your computer case. Antec’s EarthWatts series was among the first to cause a stir in the PSU industry by emphasizing efficient power delivery over the multi-rail hype over two years ago. But now 80% or better efficiency is very common.

Somehow, the industry is shifting back to square one. The TPQ-850 touts the 80 PLUS certification, which is really more of a preferred functionality feature than a marketing gimmick. Truth be told, I think would expect every power supply to be efficient, but unfortunately this is not the case. In today's technologically advanced industry, it appears that only the best power supply units can lay claim to high-end power support with high-level efficiency.

About the company: Antec, Inc.About the company: Antec, Inc.

Antec began in 1986, long before the tech boom of the late 1990’s, in Fremont, California. Now operating offices in the United States and Europe, Antec offers products to 25 countries worldwide. Presently, Antec maintains a popular range of products in: computer cases, power supplies, cooling fans, lighting components, and accessories. Antec is the original High Performance Upgrade company, which created the PC upgrade replacement category at retail. Their enclosures and power supplies have been the #1 seller by far in North American distribution and retail channels for five years running.

TPQ-850 Specifications

  • 80Plus Certified
  • Four 12V output circuits provide supreme system stability
  • 80mm low noise cooling fan
  • MTBF: 100,000 hours
  • Safety approvals: UL, CUL, FCC, TÜV, CE, C-tick, CCC, CB
  • Dimensions: - 3.4" (H) x 5.9" (W) x 7.1" (D) - 8.6cm (H) x 15cm (W) x 18cm (D)
  • Net weight: - 5.75lbs - 2.6kg

tpq-850_label.jpg

Fast Facts: 80 PLUS

About 80 PLUS: 80 PLUS is an innovative, electric utility-funded incentive program to integrate more energy-efficient power supplies into desktop computers and servers. The 80 PLUS performance specifications require power supplies in computers and servers to be 80% or greater energy efficient. This makes an 80 PLUS certified power supply at least 33% more efficient than current power supplies. 80 PLUS certified power supplies:

  • Achieve energy savings, up to $70 (55 Euro) over the life of a desktop computer
  • Reduce a room’s cooling load, increasing comfort and saving up to 30%
  • Increase computer system reliability and save on maintenance costs by as much as 40%
  • Minimize the need for noisy fans, creating a quieter environment
  • Save on construction – saves hundreds of dollars in electrical system upgrades
  • Allow more computers on the same branch circuit
  • Save the environment – prevent pollution by reducing energy consumption



 

Comments 

 
# Borne IdentityMatt 2011-08-09 08:53
"Save the environment ? prevent pollution by reducing energy consumption"

But will it balance the USA Budget?!
As if it really matters that by me buying this PS will "Save the environment" !!
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# RE: Antec TruePower Quattro 850W Modular PSU TPQ-850David Ramsey 2011-08-09 11:51
If you'd bought it four years ago, when this review originally appeared, imagine how much power you'd have saved since then!
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