Date: November 2, 2005
Author(s): Greg King
The boys and girls at Ultra have made a bit of a name for themselves with their line of power supplies. While PSUs aren’t their only products, they are their most famous. Their first big name PSU was the X-Connect and it was labeled as the Worlds first fully modular power supply. Today, I am taking a look at their new X-Finity PSU.
Here at the Techgage studios, its been a little while since our last PSU review so lets get to the point.
The X-Finity comes all wrapped up in a colorful box that seems to almost shout at you. The box is bright red with what appear to be smoke effects. Not exactly the marketing I am looking for in a PSU but catchy none the less. The thing that caught my eye more than anything else is the huge seal sticker that read Lifetime Warranty. Now thats what I am talking about!
Upon opening the box, I am taken back at how, for lack of a better term, shiny this PSU is. This is really a superb looking power supply. The remainder of the packaging is what you would expect from a power supply a power cable and a manual. The cable is for; you guessed it, plugging your new power supply into your surge protector. You do have one of those dont you?!? The first few pages of the manual are informative, if only for the completely computer inept. If anyone learns anything from these first 2 pages, you should abandon your build and buy a Dell. After you get past that, the manual gives you the product specs and this is the information that I am looking for. These are the specs that Ultra gives this unit:
The thing that I was happiest about out of everything was the fact that this PSU has SATA connectors as well as the 24 pin power cable that my DFI needs. No more 20 pin to 24 pin convert for me man, no way! This power supply offers as many connectors as you can possibly have needs for them in your case. This is what is included:
To stress this PSU out, I am going to throw quite a bit at it. I will do this to push the rails and see how much fluctuation there in on the +3.3v, +12v and the +5v rail. I will use motherboard monitor to track the different fluctuations, if any, that I encounter. This is the system specs of the PC that I am running these tests.
AMD 3700+ San Diego 1MB L2
Ultra X-Finity 500W PSU
512MB x 2 Crucial Ballistix PC4000
1 WD Raptor 74 GB
Seagate 160 GB
Creative Audigy ZS2
eVGA 7800GT PCI-E 256MB
Using BETA 81.87 drivers.
Windows XP Professional with SP2
To really push this PSU to full load, I started out by running CPU burn-in. This runs the CPU at 100% for the entire user stated time. While this was running, I loaded Rhino 3.0 3d. This is a 3d modeling program that I used in college so I started rendering one of my past projects. While all this was happening, I went ahead and opened up Aquamark3 and ran that as well.
While this seems like a bit much, I really wanted to make sure that I was pushing the entire system as much as I possibly could. The whole time, I was watching MBM5 and recording down the rail fluctuations. Here is what I got:
All in all, this unit surprised me, and all for the good. The look of this power supply was top notch and had a beautiful mirror finish to it that made me all the happier. The huge 120mm exhaust fan on the under side of the power supply was more than enough to move air over the interior components of this PSU and was ultimately quiet. The rails were dead stable with the largest difference coming on the +12v rail. While it moved more than the other two, this did not concern me at all seeing how little it moved. I would have liked to have seen it a bit closer to 12.0v but it was right around 12.5v and it did not move far from there at all.
Ultra is, as always, courting the gamers and the do-it-yourselfers with this power supply. The mirror finish on this unit, as well as the stable rails makes this PSU hard not to recommend. Another thing that really impressed me was the cabling that came out of the back of the PSU. This was incredibly ease to manage as well as route throughout my case. The packaging was top notch and well done and the time and effort that went into the manufacturing of this power supply is a testament to the fine people at Ultra who time and time again have surprised me with their attention to detail. I am pleased with this PSU as it does all that I need it to and it does it without any problems at all. The Ultra X-Finity deserves, and has earned, a solid 9 on the soon famous Techgage-o-meter.
Many thanks again to the folks at Ultra who have once again, been kind enough to allow us to review this fine PSU. Thank you for your support of us gamers. Keep it up!
Rob’s Add-in: One thing I would like to mention, is that this PSU proved very stable on the DFI Ultra-D. There have been numerous complaints in the past that the first-gen X-Finity and X-Connect PSU’s were the cause of many problems, especially with the Ultra-D/SLI-DR motherboard. It looks like Ultra went ahead and fixed whatever problems were there (I hope) to make this more stable than the previous versions. Of course, unlike the previous versions, this PSU is equipped with a true 24-Pin connector, so I’m sure that plays a role.
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