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how to test PSU's ??

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
If i were to buy a used PSU's from like ebay or something,

how would i test it out?

If i plug my rig into it and it turns on, can i assume everything about it is functional?

NOTE: without going into the concept of "quality", "price", "performance" etc etc...

i know some are crap PSU's compared to others. (like an OEM one from PC manufacturers)
or "X psu" vs "Y psu"


EDIT: Hoping shilka or twocables drops by here biggrin.gif
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My Rig
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I5 4670 H81m P33 MSI GTX 760 Hawk G Skill Ripjaws x series 2x4 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
WD blue 1TB Samsung dvd burner SH-224DB/BEBE Windows 7 Asus VN248H-P 
PowerCase
Rosewill Capstone 550w Corsair carbide 200r 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
Pentium G3220 MSI H81m-P33 G.SKILL Sniper Series 4GB PNY XLR8 SSD 120GB 
Optical DriveOSPowerCase
Cheapest Drive I Was Able To Find Windows 7 Corsair CX 450w NZXT Source 210 
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post #2 of 5
Got a multimeter? It isn't hard to do.. just be careful as electricity can always bite you... or damage something!

There are a lot of how to's out there... couldn't actually find one here on Overclock.net

You will need to know the pinout on the particular power supply you are testing (or at least it makes it a lot easier.

This may help with pinouts: http://www.overclock.net/t/1420796/repository-of-power-supply-pin-outs/0_20

I would also check the OEM site.. get a manual, or pinouts there.

This how to is pretty simple, but the general technique is the same for any PSU testing.
.

http://www.techrepublic.com/article/power-supply-troubleshooting-with-a-multimeter/#.

http://www.wikihow.com/Check-a-Power-Supply

Some general pinout info you may find handy:

http://www.moddiy.com/pages/Power-Supply-Connectors-%26-Pinouts.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ATX
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INtel 4770k ASUS maximus extreme VI  EVGA GTX 780Ti SC  EVGA GTX 780Ti SC 
GraphicsRAMHard DriveHard Drive
EVGA GTX 780Ti SC Kingston HyperX Beast 32 GB Kit (4x8 GB) 2400MH... Western Digital 2tb Enterprise Samsung 840 Pro SSD 256GB 
Optical DriveCoolingCoolingCooling
Pawtec External USB 3.0 Aluminum 8X DVD-RW Writ... Primochill ghost fitings Monsoon reservoir Swifttech MCP50x/2  
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
Primochill rigid acrylic tubing EK supremacy CPU block - Nickel EK 780Ti waterblocks x3 - Nickel Lamptron FC9 fan Controller 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
9x Primochill Acrylic Radiator Grills Alphacool ST30 280 radiator Alphacool ST30 280 radiator Alphacool 420 80mm 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Windows 7 Ultimate Dell UW3014 Merc stealth steel series keyboard EVGA NEX1500 PSU 
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post #3 of 5
A rule everyone should keep in mind is all brands and OEM´s have at least one unit that is not every good, so there is NO brand or OEM that is better then everyone else its a myth and Seasonic is the best is the bigest myth of them all

No not saying Seasonic is bad
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Seravee
(27 items)
 
  
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Intel Core I7 6850K Gigabyte X99 Ultra Gaming EVGA GTX 1080 FTW2 Kingston HyperX DDR4 Savage 3000 MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Samsung 840 Evo WD Green WD60EZRX  WD Red WD80EFZX 8TB  Seagate Ironwolf Pro 10 TB 
Optical DriveCoolingCoolingOS
LG CH12NS30 x5 Noctua NF-A14 FLX Noctua NH-D15S Windows 7 64 Bit 
MonitorMonitorKeyboardPower
Asus PG279Q LG 49UH750V 4K LED TV Corsair Gaming Strafe RGB EVGA SuperNova G2 750 watt 
CaseMouseMouse PadAudio
Phanteks Enthoo Luxe Roccat Kone EMP Roccat Sense Metor Sennheiser HD 598 
AudioAudioAudioAudio
Onkyo TX NR646  Harman Kardon HKTS 60 Dali Opticon Vokal x2 Dali Opticon 2 
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x2 Dali Opticon 1 CableMod E series PSU cable set CableMod LED Strips 
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post #4 of 5
You wouldn't be able to measure ripple and noise without expensive test gear, so you wouldn't know if it's stressing your components (say hello to early deaths of hard drives, maybe mobos, etc.) or not.

Now, if the DC voltages measured from a multimeter are outside the acceptable ranges, that's bad. And that's something you can measure readily and cheaply.
post #5 of 5
I've had PSUs that seemed to work fine despite having lots of defective bulging or leaking capacitors in them, but they probably couldn't put out anything close to their rated power because of that.

HardwareInsights.com has done annual roundups of the worst PSUs. Quality has ranged from units that could almost meet their advertised power rating to those that burned out way below that or couldn't meet specs even at zero watt load:

http://hardwareinsights.com/wp/the-2013-el-cheapo-power-supply-roundup/
http://hardwareinsights.com/wp/the-2012-el-cheapo-power-supply-roundup/
http://hardwareinsights.com/wp/the-el-cheapo-power-supply-round-up-2/

From a practical standpoint, if you buy a used PSU that rated well from a qualified website, like JonnyGuru.com, XbitLabs.com, HardOCP.com, etc., and it contains high quality capacitors (Japanese, except model KZG or KZJ from Chemicon or TK brand), it will be fine, provided all the voltages check out OK with the paperclip test or when you run a computer with hit.
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