Reviewed by Andrew Lima.
There’s a calm before the storm…
Looking for brute, reliable and efficient power? Then the Cooler Master 600W Thunder series power supply is just for you.
On the front of the box we get an idea of the product straight away as a powerful asset you would want to add into your gaming rig. Cooler Master threw in a “whopping” 3 year warranty on this unit. With 85% efficiency, and an active PFC (>0.9) we can see overall that this unit is taking the environment into consideration. Being as efficient as it is will save you some cash on your monthly electricity bills. So remember the higher the efficiency the better.
Some of you may be confused with the efficiency and Power Factor talk, well here’s a breakdown of the two.
EFFICIENCY: The efficiency rating on a PSU is simply a rating for how well the PSU converts the AC power it receives from the outlet to DC power the components of the PC can use. This helps to cut back on the power it draws.
POWER FACTOR: A load with a low power factor draws more current than a load with a high power factor for the same amount of useful power transferred.
On the belly of the beast we get a clear indication of all the specifications, a bit overwhelming for some. So I am going to break it down as simple as possible.
We see that the Thunder has multiple safety mechanisms in the forms of Over Current Protection (OCP), Over Power Protection (OPP), Over Voltage Protection (OVP) and Short Circuit Protection (SCP) and has a mean time between failures (MTBF) of 100 000 hours. Meaning that you will get roughly 100 000 hours plus of “mileage”.
The Thunder consists of a single 12v rail which offers ample and sturdy power consistency for you precious rig. The Thunder is light weight – its small design makes it light- and is a good factor to keep into consideration when you have to lug your pc to LANs. A 120mm smart controlled fan is installed to ensure quietness and efficient cooling under load and on idle.
The Thunder is not a module power supply which basically means you are unable to remove unused connectors. Never the less this power supply offers great value for money.
The Thunder has the following connectors:
- 1 x 4+4 CPU Pin
- 1 x 20+4 Motherboard Pin
- 6 x SATA Pins
- 1 x 4 Floppy Pin
- 2 x 6+2 PCI-e Pins
- 3 x 4 Peripheral Pins
The power supply is well suited for mid to full tower cases. The 4+4 CPU Pin is for the newer, bigger motherboards on the market at the moment. The 20+4 Motherboard Pin is the standard pin for motherboards. The 6 SATA pins are a must, the more the merrier right? SATA pins are used for hard drives and DVD ROMS.
The 4 Floppy pin can be used for fans as well as the 4 Peripheral pins, which are used for fans and so on (If you run out of SATA pins you can buy a converter cable from 4pin to SATA at any computer store for around R20).
An important issue with the PCI-e pins: there may be two of them but it doesn’t mean this is ideal for SLI/Crossfire, as graphics cards need quite a bit of power to run, you always want extra power left over on your Power Supply, rather be safe than sorry.
New (top end) graphics cards use 2 PCI-e pins. You could probably get away with low end SLI/Crossfire but it wouldn’t be ideal as you should only SLI/Crossfire the top end cards which will result in getting a stronger Power supply from 750W upwards.
So we’ve learnt that the more efficient the power supply the better, which the Thunder is. We see it is ideal for the average gamer that has a mid end gaming computer with a single graphics card system, and a couple of hard drives. Overall this is a power supply to take into consideration when you are upgrading and do not plan to run more than one graphics card in the future.
Once again Cooler Master has proven to provide an amazing product that will get the gamers going into a frenzy.
Andrew Lima operates the monthly Ground Zero LAN events in the south of Johannesburg.
The Cool Master 600W Thunder was supplied by Cool Master South Africa.