Thermaltake SMART 600W Continuous Power ATX Power Supply Review

Thermaltake SMART 600W Continuous Power ATX Power Supply Review

Although one should never go with the cheapest available power supply, spending an inordinate amount of cash on one that has many bells and whistles you’ll never actually use isn’t that smart of an approach either.

If you’re content to leave the assembly of your PC to the pros at your local PC shop and just want a power supply you can depend on, Thermaltake’s 600W power supply is a smart choice to make, and not just because of its name.

Apart from having made a name for itself with top tier gaming peripherals and cases, Thermaltake is a brand most people usually associate only with the manufacturing of high-end power supplies that produce a whopping 1000W or more.

It’s interesting to note that the Chinese company has a number of models for this vital PC component in the fiercely competitive mainstream segment too, and when pitted against more famous names in the bracket, they manage to hold their own. This 600W power supply is without a doubt one of them.

Features of Thermaltake SMART 600W Continuous Power ATX Power Supply

The output quality of the direct current of the Thermaltake SMART 600W continuous power supply is outstanding. All three rails show a minimal amount of power fluctuation that stays well within a 2 percent margin during normal operation as well as strenuous testing.

The noise and ripple levels generated by power conversion are negligible too, giving this unit an overall great impression when it comes to the stability and quality of the current it produces.

Efficiency-wise, this unit is labeled as being compliant with the 80 PLUS regular standard. This isn’t the absolute best result in terms of power efficiency, but it does guarantee that even at 100 percent usage, the efficiency won’t drop below four fifths.

Generally speaking, this is also a safe unit. Most recognized industry standards in the area of surge and voltage protection like OVP, OPP and SCP are present. The only one that’s missing is OTP or Over Temperature Protection.

Additionally, the PSU is certified to work without fault 10 degrees lower than similar power supplies, making temperature monitoring by the user a necessity during hot summer months.

The inside of the unit has been redesigned to offer better airflow options than its previous versions. A portion of the heatsinks used to cool the power supply passively have been taken out to make the airflow within it better. This turned out to be a shrewd move on Thermaltake’s part as the respectable 140mm fan charged with keeping everything at reasonable temperatures is more than up to the task.

Speaking of this PSU’s inner workings, some customers might find fault with the fact that its capacitors are Chinese as opposed to the exclusive use of high-quality capacitors manufactured in Japan by most other companies.

While an argument could have been made about their noticeable inferiority a few years back, today’s capacitors made in China are only marginally worse. In a non-professional environment, the difference won’t be noticeable.

Pros:

  • One of the more affordable 600W units on the market which still retains a great many features seen in higher-end models
  • Can convert enough power for continued smooth operation of a mid to high range PC with any single modern graphics card
  • Is compatible with power grids around the world and can be used with power sources that have up to 240 volts
  • Produces direct current with little to no fluctuations and keeps electric ripples to an acceptable minimum

Cons:

  • The power supply is rated for a continued output only at 40 degrees Celsius instead of 50. This doesn’t have to be a problem in and of itself, but it does require an airy case and attention to ambient temperatures
  • The unit isn’t modular. PSUs that produce less wattage tend to have less fixed cables that need managing. Given that 600W is enough for fare more drives, USBs and other accessories, the cable situation inside the case can get a bit messy

Conclusion

To produce a power supply which has so much to offer to the mainstream consumer at very attractive prices, Thermaltake has had to cut corners. Like almost everything else about it, this was done in a clever manner.

They compromised on features more suitable for the high-end, like better temperature handling for overclocking, and similar details the average consumer won’t miss or care about, but which do add up in the end.

This leaves us with a product that is more than capable of handling its specified load without fear that something might happen to other parts of the PC during a power surge or after an outage.

It feels very much at home in a typical environment of a gaming or media editing computer and should perform as expected well past its 5-year warranty. When all is said and done, Thermaltake’s power supply lives up to its name.

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