FSP Dagger 600W SFX PSU Review

Transient Response Tests

Advanced Transient Response Tests

For details on our transient response testing, please click here.

Ιn these tests, we monitor the SDA600's response in several scenarios. First, a transient load (10A at +12V, 5A at 5V, 5A at 3.3V, and 0.5A at 5VSB) is applied for 200ms as the PSU works at 20 percent load. In the second scenario, it's hit by the same transient load while operating at 50 percent load.

In the next sets of tests, we increase the transient load on the major rails with a new configuration: 15A at +12V, 6A at 5V, 6A at 3.3V, and 0.5A at 5VSB. We also increase the load-changing repetition rate from 5 Hz (200ms) to 50 Hz (20ms). Again, this runs with the PSU operating at 20 and 50 percent load.

The last tests are even tougher. Although we keep the same loads, the load-changing repetition rate rises to 1 KHz (1ms).

In all of the tests, we use an oscilloscope to measure the voltage drops caused by the transient load. The voltages should remain within the ATX specification's regulation limits.

These tests are crucial because they simulate the transient loads a PSU is likely to handle (such as booting a RAID array or an instant 100 percent load of CPU/GPUs). We call these "Advanced Transient Response Tests," and they are designed to be very tough to master, especially for a PSU with a capacity of less than 500W.

Advanced Transient Response at 20 Percent – 200ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.058V11.925V1.10%Pass
5V4.967V4.901V1.33%Pass
3.3V3.373V3.268V3.11%Pass
5VSB5.000V4.964V0.72%Pass

Advanced Transient Response at 20 Percent – 20ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.058V11.830V1.89%Pass
5V4.968V4.897V1.43%Pass
3.3V3.373V3.262V3.29%Pass
5VSB5.001V4.968V0.66%Pass

Advanced Transient Response at 20 Percent – 1ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.055V11.828V1.88%Pass
5V4.967V4.872V1.91%Pass
3.3V3.373V3.229V4.27%Pass
5VSB5.001V4.970V0.62%Pass

Advanced Transient Response at 50 Percent – 200ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.027V11.903V1.03%Pass
5V4.939V4.863V1.54%Pass
3.3V3.341V3.244V2.90%Pass
5VSB4.965V4.920V0.91%Pass

Advanced Transient Response at 50 Percent – 20ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.025V11.848V1.47%Pass
5V4.939V4.872V1.36%Pass
3.3V3.340V3.187V4.58%Pass
5VSB4.965V4.904V1.23%Pass

Advanced Transient Response at 50 Percent – 1ms

VoltageBeforeAfterChangePass/Fail
12V12.022V11.859V1.36%Pass
5V4.939V4.842V1.96%Pass
3.3V3.340V3.191V4.46%Pass
5VSB4.966V4.907V1.19%Pass

FSP passes every one of these tests. That's noteworthy when you consider we've recently seen very high-end PSUs fail some of them.

We'd still like to see lower deviations on the 3.3V rail, which needs a lot of improvements. 

Here are the oscilloscope screenshots we took during Advanced Transient Response Testing:

Transient Response At 20 Percent Load – 200ms

Transient Response At 20 Percent Load – 20ms

Transient Response At 20 Percent Load – 1ms

Transient Response At 50 Percent Load – 200ms

Transient Response At 50 Percent Load – 20ms

Transient Response At 50 Percent Load – 1ms

Turn-On Transient Tests

In the next set of tests, we measure the PSU's response in simpler transient load scenarios—during its power-on phase.

For the first measurement, we turned the SDA600 off, dialed in the maximum current the 5VSB could output and switched the PSU back on. In the second test, we dialed the maximum load the +12V could handle and started the 600W supply while it was in standby mode. In the last test, while the PSU was completely switched off, we dialed the maximum load the +12V rail could handle before switching it back on from the loader and restoring the power. The ATX specification states that recorded spikes on all rails should not exceed 10 percent of their nominal values (+10 percent for 12V is 13.2V, and 5.5 V for 5V).

A tiny spike in the third test isn't enough to spoil an overall good picture.

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  • chumly
    ...and I'll stick with Seasonic or Corsair.
  • DarkSable
    I won't. FSP is a known OEM; arguably the second greatest on the market. The original Silverstone power supplies were made by FSP, while the new ones and Corsair's offerings are made by Great Well, which although doing a good job on Corsair's SFX psus, is not known for their reliability.