Enermax ECO80+ 350w ATX PSU Page: 1
Enermax Logo
Introduction
 
Founded in 1990 by a group of young professionals, Enermax is one of few PSU manufacturers that can boast having their very own production line. This, combined with a dedicated team designers & developers has enabled Enermax to produce a whole host of award wining products over the years which have indisputably positioned them as one of the 'top dogs' in their field.
 
Recently we had a chance to take a look at both their high-end Revolution85+ 950w unit and the more modest Liberty ECO 500w. Both proved to be excellent contenders walking away with our Editors Choice and Recommended awards respectively. However today, having already covered the high and medium ranges we're going to take a look at an entry level unit  designed for those with less demanding energy requirements.
 
Branded simply the ECO80+, it is immediately apparent that this unit is all about being eco friendly. Therefore it comes as no surprise that the unit is only available in low wattage models ranging from 350-620w with the 350w actually being the only model listed on Enermax's UK website (other models coming soon). Here's what Enermax had to say about the unit we're going to be taking a look at today:
 
80PLUS® efficency
80-86% efficiency at 20-100% load. ECO80+ is certified by 80PLUS® organisation

Magma fan inside!
Integrated Magma fan guarantees best possible and ultra silent cooling, due to patented Twister Bearing Technology and BATWING blades. Self-lubricating bearing material enhances life expectancy up to 100.000 hours

Intel ATX12V v2.3
ATX12V v2.3 support for latest Intel® Core 2 Duo™ / Quad™ / Extreme™ / i7™, AMD® Athlon™ 64X2 and Phenom™

SpeedGuard
Patented fuzzy logic 12cm fan speed control for optimal cooling and minimum noise

AirGuard
Patented air-inlet with optimal aero-dynamical design reduces noisy air turbulences.

SafeGuard
Industry-leading octuple protection circuitry (OCP, OVP, AC UVP, DC UVP, OPP, OTP, SCP, and SIP)

Non-Stop @ 40°C
Non-stop industrial class performance at 40°C/104°F ambient

EMC ready!
Full-scale electromagnetic filtering protects your system against radiation interferences (CE EMC EN61204 compliance)

Dimensions (W x H x D)
150 x 86 x 140mm

Warranty
3 years vendor warranty
 
All in all the specifications are pretty much what we've come to expect of Enermax. You get a unit with 80-86% efficiency depending on load, support for the latest motherboards, various safety and noise reduction features, assurance that the unit can maintain its stated output rating at 40°C and of course a 3 year warranty. Enermax has also used one of their very own Magma Twister fans inside the unit which retail at just shy of £10 each in the shops. Not bad at all!
  
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Rail Layout
DC Output +3.3V +5V +12V1 +12V2 +12V3 +12V4 +12V5 +12V6 -12V +5VSB
20A 20A 17A 17A - - - - 0.6A 3A
Max Power 110W 324W 7.2W 15W
350W (385W Peak)
 
Moving on to the power distribution, everything is once again pretty much standard. The ECO80+ 350w has a total of two +12v rails each rated to a maximum of 17A with a combined output of 324W (27A). It's certainly not going to power any high-end gaming systems, but it should be more than capable of powering any modern system minus the monsterous GPU or 10 disk RAID array. The +3.3v and +5v rails also share a reasonable amount of the power with a total of 110w to divide between them.
 
Now lets see how the ECO80+ arrived at our office...


Enermax ECO80+ 350w ATX PSU Page: 2
Packaging & Appearance
 
As you would expect from a PSU with the word ECO in it's name, the packaging on the ECO80+ uses a green and white theme adorn with foliage to convey its eco friendliness to potential buyers. I was hoping to catch Enermax out by revealing that the single walled cardboard box wasn't made from recycled card, but alas it is, so 1-0 to Enermax.
 
At the front of the box Enermax have kept information to a minimum by only listing three of the units most prominent features along with an image of the unit sporting its red (which looks orange) Magma fan. Strangely an AMD Crossfire certified logo has also been added to the box, which probably isn't the case for the 350w model as it only has one PCI-E connector.
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Box Enermax ECO80+ 350w Box
 
Around the back of the box things get a little bit more interesting with both fan speed and efficiency graphs showing that the unit peaks at around 50% load which is fairly common for most standard PSU's. Enermax have also gone to the trouble of comparing the ECO80+ to a generic 77% efficiency PSU for the purpose of showing potential buyers how much money they could be saving (€32.70) a year by switching to a more efficient unit.
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Box Side Enermax ECO80+ 350w Box Side
 
Moving on to the sides of the box we can see that Enermax have printed two charts. The first on the green background gives information on how many connectors you can expect to find on each of the ECO80+ models, while the second on the white background details their various rail outputs. 
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Box Open Enermax ECO80+ 350w Contents
 
Inside the box you can expect to find all of the normal accessories required to get you up and running (Mains Lead, Manuals & Screws) along with some fancy Enermax branded velco cable ties. The PSU its self is kept separate from the accessories by a cardboard divider and a bubblewrap bag protects the unit from minor knocks and scratches during shipping.
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w PSU Bottom Enermax ECO80+ 350w Bottom
 
Removing the EVO80+ from the packaging, first impressions are that this certainly isn't a budget unit at all. Most low-wattage PSU's from other manufacturers are stripped of all niceties and presented as plain black boxes with ugly silver fan grills and shoddily sleeved cables (at best). However, Enermax have treated the EVO80+ 350w unit to exactly the same trimmings as the higher wattage models, fitting it with the Enermax trademark Gold grill, an appealing slate grey powdercoat finish and the same sleeving as found on all other Enermax models.
 
Enermax ECO80+ Top Enermax ECO80+ 350w Side
 
Normally at this point I'd pass comment that the specification sticker would be best placed out of the way at the top of the unit to avoid spoiling the aesthetics. But given that that the ECO80+ is a low wattage unit it's probably best that the rail layout chart is fully on show to remind users of its capabilities should they upgrade any part of their PC's in the future.
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Rear Enermax ECO80+ 350w Power Socket
 
The rear of the unit is also quite standard with a large honeycomb grill taking up most of the space and a 'kettle' style AC inlet and power switch tucked away in the corner.  Now that we've covered the basics let's go in for a closer look at the ECO80+ over on the next page...


Enermax ECO80+ 350w ATX PSU Page: 3
Cables & Connectors
 
As you'd expect from a 350W PSU, the number of cables and connectors on the ECO80+ is quite limited. A total of four SATA and four Molex plugs are provided over three cables with one of the cables actually featuring a combination of both connector types. This could potentially be useful if your system has an assortment of SATA and IDE hard disks in close proximity to each other, but despite Enermax's best efforts to be innovative here, I think most people would rather the connectors be kept on separate cables.
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Connectors
 ATX Connector Native 1x 24 Pin
 EPS-12v / P4-12v Connector(s) Native 1x 4+4 Pin
 Molex Connectors Native 4x
 Floppy Disk Connectors Native 1x
 SATA Connectors Native 4x
 PCI-E Connectors Native 1x 6 Pin
 
To prevent the inside of your PC from looking like an Indian telephone exchange Enermax has sleeved all of the cables in their trademark black and gold braiding. For most of the cables, the braiding extends right up to the first connector before being finished with heat shrink, but for some reason the EPS12v and PCI-E cables missed out on some of the sleeving party and are quite naked from the waist up.
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w ATX Enermax ECO80+ 350w SATA MOLEX
 
The ATX connector on the unit is native 24-pin with no way of reducing it down to the older 20-Pin standard. This is quite strange as the primary audience for low wattage units is more than likely people who need a new PSU for their slightly outdated hardware. However, some legacy compatibility is provided on the EPS-12v 8-Pin connector which can be reduced down to a 4-Pin P4-12v connector by sliding the connector in two.
 
 
Internal Layout
 
With only a small amount of cables entering the unit and no modular blackplane to squeeze in, the internals of the ECO80+ 350w are naturally quite tidy. This also applies to the general layout of the components inside the unit which have been given plenty of breathing space simply because there are very few components that need to be fitted to a PSU of this wattage. In fact, if it wasn't for the use of a 120mm fan inside the unit, Enermax probably could have compacted the internals significantly and reduced the PSU length by at least 50mm.
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Insides Enermax ECO80+ 350w Insides
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Transformers Enermax ECO80+ 350w Mosfets
 
Spanning the length of the unit are two black anodised heatsinks attached to the PSU's mosfets. The tops of each heatsink are finned to provide the largest possible surface area for cooling by the 120mm fan while the large gaps along the length of the heatsink ensure that airflow is allowed to reach other components inside the PSU without the heatsink acting as a wall.
 
Sitting in between the heatsinks are two yellow transformers. The larger of the two is responsible for all of the main rails (+3.3v, +5v and +12v) whereas the smaller is solely responsible for for the +5VSB (Standby) rail. 
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Caps Enermax ECO80+ 350w Caps
 
The primary capacitor is a Japanese manufactured Hitachi HP3 which carries the specification 85°C 220uF 400VDC. On the secondary side, several Jen Pan (CE-TUR) caps rated at 105c can also be spotted. This is a fairly common parts list for an Enermax unit, with the recently reviewed Liberty ECO 500w carrying almost identical components.
 
 Enermax ECO80+ 350w RF Filter
 
An EMI filtering circuit has been installed just behind the AC inlet on a rather tidy PCB. This should help to keep any internally generated noise from the MOSFET's and other components contained within the device, while also preventing any external AC line noise from entering the PSU.
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Fan Enermax ECO80+ 350w Fan
 
Finally we come to the rather sexy Enermax Magma Twister 120mm fan. If this is indeed the same fan that Enermax sell separately in retail channels then the specifications are as follows:
 
Speed (RPM): 1500
Voltage: 12V
Current: 0.34
Flow (MAX)(CFM): 69.15
Pressure (MAX)(mm-H20): 1.400
Noise dB(A): 18
 
Now let's crack on with the testing...


Enermax ECO80+ 350w ATX PSU Page: 4
Simulated Load Testing

To provide our readers with the most accurate results, Overclock3D uses a professional grade SunMoon SM-268+ ATE load tester capable of placing a sustained load of 1690w across a total of six rails (including +5vsb and -12v) on the PSU. Unlike our previous resistor-based load tester, the SM-268+ gives us the ability to adjust amperage loads in increments as small as 0.01A while also measuring voltages and wattage readings on-screen.

During today's tests, we will be placing the Enermax ECO80+ 350w under 25%, 50%, 75% and 100% load levels at both room temperature and inside a hot box regulated to a temperature of around 50°C. Additional 'Cross Load'  and a 'Max Load' tests will also be performed under these conditions to simulate how the PSU reacts to heavily uneven loads as well as running above its specified output.
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Results @ Room Temperature
   +3.3v  +5.0v  +12v*  +5vSB  -12v  AC Watts /
 DC Watts
 Efficiency  Intake /
 Exhaust
Δ Temp
Test 1
(Low)
2.50A 2.50A 5.00A  0.75A  0.15A  103w /
87w
 84.46%  24.4°C /
  29.2°C
4.8°C
 3.34v 5.03v 12.24v 5.11v  -11.87v
Test 2
(Med)
 5.00A  5.00A  10.00A 1.5A  0.30A  205w /
175w
 85.36%  24.9°C /
33.6°C
8.7°C
3.32v
5.00v
12.22v 5.08v  -11.90v
Test 3
(High)
7.50A 7.50A 15.00A  2.25A  0.45A  307w /
262w
 85.34%  25.6C /
40.4°C
14.8°C
3.30v 4.98v 12.22v 5.04v -11.92v
Test 4
(Full)
 10.00A  10.00A  20.00A  3.00A  0.60A  415w /
349w
 84.09%  25.4°C /
43.1°C
 17.7°C
3.27v 4.96v 12.20v 4.99v -11.98v
Test 5
(x-load)
11.00A 11.00A 1.00A 0.00A 0.00A  129w /
102w
79.06% 24.8°C /
36.7°C
11.9 °C
3.27v 4.87v 12.61v 5.13v -12.30v
Test 6
(x-load)
 1.00A  1.00A  27.00A  0.00A  0.00A  379w /
326w
86.01%  24.6°C /
44.6°C
 20.0°C
 3.35v 5.14v 11.76v 5.14v -12.36v
Test 7
(MAX)
 13.61A  10.77A  26.60A  4.50A  0.60A  545w /
449w
82.38%  24.7°C /
45.6°C
 20.9°C
3.24v 4.96v 12.12v 4.87v -12.05v
* It should also be noted that the all +12v rails on the ECO80+ will be combined during the testing.
 
Starting off with the results from the standard load tests (1-4), one word that springs to mind is WOW. Neither the +3.3v, +5v or +12v rails budged by any considerable amount with the maximum difference between low and full loads being 0.07v. The cross load results in tests 5 and 6 flagged up some potential issues with the +12v rails as they were on the verge of rising outside ATX spec (+/-5%) in test 5 and also fell quite low in test 6. But realistically these kind of skewed loads are highly unlikely to occur in a real PC system.
 
The ECO80+ was also the first PSU to undergo our new MAX Load test in which each of the rails was pushed as high as it could go before the safety features of the unit kicked in and switched it off. Once again the ECO80+ performed admirably managing to deliver 449w - almost 100w more than its rated output, and still with extremely good output voltages!
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Results @ 50°C
   +3.3v  +5.0v  +12v  +5vSB  -12v  AC Watts /
 DC Watts
 Efficiency  Intake /
 Exhaust
Δ Temp
Test 1
(Low)
2.50A 2.50A 5.00A  0.75A  0.15A  103w /
87w
 84.46%  51.2°C /
  51.2°C
0.0°C
 3.34v 5.04v 12.22v 5.11v  -11.89v
Test 2
(Med)
 5.00A  5.00A  10.00A 1.5A  0.30A  205w /
175w
 85.36%  50.7°C /
54.7°C
4.0°C
3.32v 5.01v 12.22v 5.07v  -11.92v
Test 3
(High)
7.50A 7.50A 15.00A  2.25A  0.45A  307w /
262w
 85.34%  50.6C /
57.8°C
 7.1°C
3.30v 4.99v 12.22v 5.03v -11.97v
Test 4
(Full)
 10.00A  10.00A  20.00A  3.00A  0.60A  415w /
349w
 84.09%  50.7°C /
62.4°C
 11.7°C
3.27v 4.97v 12.20v 4.98v -12.00v
Test 5
(x-load)
11.00A 11.00A 1.00A 0.00A 0.00A  129w /
102w
79.06% 50.5°C /
51.5°C
1.0 °C
3.27v 4.88v 12.64v 5.13v -12.32v
Test 6
(x-load)
 1.00A  1.00A  27.00A  0.00A  0.00A  384w /
326w
84.89%  51.0°C /
55.5°C
 4.5°C
 3.35v 5.14v 11.76v 5.13v -12.38v
Test 7
(MAX)
 13.61A  10.77A  26.60A  4.50A  0.60A  548w /
448w
81.75%  50.7°C /
67.3°C
 16.6°C
3.23v 4.96v 12.10v 4.85v -12.12v

With the temperature cranked up to 50°C and a re-run of all the previous tests, the ECO80+ showed no additional signs of strain, producing near identical results to those conducted at room temperature. This is very impressive considering that Enermax have only rated the ECO80+ at 40°C.
 
Additionally one other area that is certainly worthy of mention before we move on to the scope results is efficiency. In tests 1-4 (the ones closest to real-world situations), the ECO80+ managed between 84-85% efficiency showing that it's certainly no gas guzzler! Only when the unit was really pushed to its limits or handed a nasty crossload did the efficiency dip closer to the 80% mark.
 
Enermax ECO80+ 350w Scope Results @ 50c
   +3.3v  +5.0v  +12v
Test 1
(Low)
T1_3.3V T1_5V T1_12V
Test 2
(Med)
t2_3.3v t2_5v t2_12v
Test 3
(High)
t3_3.3v t3_5v t3_12v
Test 4
(Full)
t4_3v t4_5v t4_12v
Test 5
(x-load)
t5_3.3v t5_5v t5_12v
Test 6
(x-load)
t6_3.3v t6_5v t6_12v
Test 7
(MAX)
T7_3.3 T7_5 T7_12

For the last part of the testing we analysed the ripple on the +3.3, +5 and +12v rails using a Rigol 25Mhz 400MSa/s oscilloscope. All readings were taken while the PSU was installed inside our 50°C hot box to provide us with worst case scenario results.
 
Once again the ECO80+ proved to be truly amazing with the +3.3v and +5v rails staying below 22mV in tests 1-4 and only hitting 28mV on the +5v rail in test 5. The +12v rails also managed to keep ripple to a minimum with test 1 starting at 22mV, increasing to 42mV by test 4; and test 7 giving the highest reading of 52mV when the unit was running well above its rated output at 448W.
 
To put these results into context, ATX specification states that the +3.3v and +5.0v rails must stay below 50mV ripple, while the +12v rails must remain within 120mV.The ECO80+ certainly managed this with ease, so let's move on to the conclusion...


Enermax ECO80+ 350w ATX PSU Page: 5
Conclusion
 
Enermax ECO80+Being a enthusiast it's often quite hard to to get excited about the more 'mainstream' components. However, when presented with a power supply that manages to hold its own under the strain of the OC3D PSU testing arsenal it's difficult not to find yourself in admiration of the device. And admire the ECO80+ 350W we did!
 
Not only did the ECO80+ manage to hold rock solid voltages across all of our standard tests, but when pushed to its absolute limits with a load of almost 450W (just before OCP kicked in) it refused to show signs of being beaten. This is certainly better than the Silverstone Strider 350w unit we began testing earlier in the week, which died during a trial run of our MAX load tests before OCP could kick in and save it.
 
Putting each of the rails under even closer scrutiny on the oscilloscope further revealed that ripple was also very much in check with the +3.3v and +5v rails rarely shifting outside of 20mV and the +12v rail only hitting 52mV in Test 7. Simply awesome.
 
The ECO80+ also managed to live up to its name by holding 80%+ efficiency under almost all loads, with the average efficiency being closer to 85%. Only in Test 5 when the unit was placed under a heavily unbalanced crossload did efficiency drop to 79%, but as we've said in the past; it's highly unlikely that the average user would ever be able to replicate these tests in an ordinary PC system.
 
For some people looks also play an important factor when purchasing a new PSU, and Enermax certainly have this covered too.  The ECO80+ 350w could have easily been yet another black box with nothing to distinguish it from any other unit on the market, but instead Enermax have gone all-out with an attractive slate grey powedercoat finish, trademark gold fan grill and of course the awesome looking 120mm Magma Twister fan. Unfortunately we can't really comment on the noise levels of the unit as the testing equipment tends to produce quite a din. But with our ears to the unit while running at full load, it certainly appeared to be whisper quiet.
 
Unfortunately the Enermax ECO80+ 350w is not currently stocked by any retailers in the UK at the time of writing, but Enermax do tell us that a UK distributor (C&J Computers) does have stock and that the RRP is currently set at £45.99. With any luck we will see these hitting the shops shortly.
 
The Good
- Excellent voltage stability - even when running at 448w!
- Great looks, especially thanks to the Magma fan.
- Decent efficiency levels.
- Silent operation (as far as we could tell).
- Great ripple results.
 
The Mediocre
- 24 Pin ATX cable would have been better as a 20+4 Pin.
- Some cables not sleeved all the way to the ends.
- +12v rail in crossload results a little unruly.
 
The Bad
- Absolutely nothing.
 
 
 Overclock3D Editors Choice Award 
 
Thanks to Enermax for sending in the ECO80+ for review. Discuss this review in our forums.