1. anybody have one/tried one? clocker?

the price don't look too bad
\$150 USD (locally)
NeoHE 550
550W continuous* power
+12V1 18A
+12V2 18A
+12V3 18A
+5V 20A
+3.3V 24A

hell I paid \$130 locally for my last PSU
NeoPower 480
480W max power
+12V1 18A
+12V2 15A
+5V 38A
+3.3V 30A

*don't know what to make of this
it's said to be both max and continuous
in the features section of the spec sheet it's listed as max,
in the output section it's listed as continuous
http://www.antec.com/specs/NeoHE550_spe.html

if you take the formula for determining wattage, A*V=W,
you would think this thing can push well over 600W max just on the +12V rails alone....

-edit- and what of the lower amperage on the +3.3 and +5V?
will that mean squat in terms of performance?

2. The theoretical maximum power on each 12v rail is 216W. 3 rails = 648W. Add the other supplies and you get a theoretical maximum of 849W. However, if 2 of the 12V rails are supplying the full 216W, the third rail is only allowed to supply 72W. That cuts the theoretical maximum down to 705W. It would be pretty silly to arrange it like that unless you didn't have any choice though.

Of course, the manufacturers know that things will just get too hot if you try to draw that much power, so they state the continuous power rating at 550W. That doesn't mean you can't go over that for very short periods. Drive spin-up draws more current than continuous operation, so start up of your pc will raise the power requirement, but only for a few seconds. That's why you see different maximum and continuous power ratings.

Historically, as PSU output has increased the rating of all the voltages has been raised more or less proportionately. So going from a 200W supply to a 400W supply has usually doubled the amount of 3.3v and 5V power available. However, the actual requirement on these voltages has often dropped. So PSUs have been making power available that no-one has needed. It is also very inefficient.

Part of the problem with this is that people do their "power calculations" and work out that they need perhaps 300W. What they fail to realise is that almost all of this is on the 12V rail. They go out and buy a 400W PSU thinking they are doing a good job by oversupplying when in fact they probably aren't meeting the power requirements of their system.

3. Originally Posted by fkdup74
anybody have one/tried one? clocker?
Yes, I've sold two...one over the counter (never to be seen/heard from again) and the other went into the TJ06 machine I posted in early December.

I love modular supplies (my fave at the moment being the Hiper 580) and the Antec worked well after we sorted the draw on each +12v line to fall within spec (if you recall, the TJ used a 7800GT which had a molex instead of a PCI-e connector and caused us a lot of trouble until we figured that out).

Outside of the convenience in cabling and checking output with a multimeter, my technical expertise ends.
I still use the "heavier is better" theory (which seems pretty workable) to judge PSUs and the Antec Neo series are not lightweights, so they pass my rudimentary tests.

I'm probably going to use the Neo 480 in Sprocket's new build just to clean up the wiring.

4. @lynx - yeah I did the calculations on the 12V rails,
so I figured the 550 continuous rating on Antec's part was fair, but had to ask
lot of juice for the buck, here at least, where everything seems more expensive

@clocker - the HE will end up in my current box (that the Neo 480 is handling fine)
6600GT AGP as opposed to the 7800GT PCIe, so maybe I'll not have to have the troubles you did
although she may end up with PCIe mobo/gfx before long, so I'll remember that

just need to get another box going,
and it has been equipped with an oooooold 250W Hi Pro out of an old Compaq
it will do for now, nothing but (1) optical, (1) HDD, and an old Radeon 9200
not too power hungry
but it's probably gonna end up being a server box, so as I add storage, I will start to worry
so it gets the Neo 480, and this one gets the HE 550

that is, if I get off my ass and go get it

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