By: Hai Wang
October 23, 2020
In automotive industry, it is quite common to see one manufacturer with two or more brands. Each of the brand has its own targeted customers. For example, Toyota had three branches: Toyota itself as well as Lexus and Scion. Lexus is Toyota's luxury brand. If you are looking to show you have somehow made it with your life and at the same time you want something reliable, Lexus is your choice. As for younger generations, cars from the Scion branch is more attractive, or at least that is what Toyota believed. That is, of course, no one else thought so, and they shut down the brand in 2016. Not only Toyota, Honda and Nissan do the same thing too. Nissan has Infiniti, but interestingly, Nissan's famous supercar, the GT-R, is still under Nissan brand. As for Honda, there is Acura. I personally own a Honda and an Acura. My impression is that, Honda is good enough to serve as a fun daily driver, and Acura is basically a Honda with better features. For example, Acura has stuff like better leather, higher performance, and improved sound system. The same thing goes for computer power supplies. The same company can make both fancy ones as well as budget ones. The design goal of budget PSUs is to make acceptable performance products at a low cost. It is actually pretty challenging to design a budget PSU right. This is because it takes effort to really find the balance between low-cost and good performance. As for today's review unit, the Gigabyte P550B 550W PSU, it is a budget PSU, and it is non-modular. What was sacrificed to reduce the cost? This review is here to find out!
Today’s review unit was shipped from City of Industry, California, USA to us here in Calgary, Alberta, Canada via FedEx Ground. City of Industry is the location of company's American headquarters. You can see the parcel is generally in good shape, therefore there is no need to be nervous about the safety of the PSU inside the box. After more than a thousand miles of transportation, I could only see a small dent on the top left corner.
After pulling the review unit out of the shipping box, we can get a closer look at the retail package. The overall design of the package is quite simple. From the front view, the only words you can see at first glance are the company name, product name, and the 80 Plus Bronze badge. A photo of the power supply unit is shown in the middle left of the box. By looking at the retail package in the front view, you cannot get too much information about this product. To dig in more, you really need to look at the back side of the box. On the flip side of the box, there is a specifications table, which indicates how much power it can deliver at each voltage level. All of the important features of this power supply unit are located at the back of the package as well. Generally speaking, the retail package design does its job. By just glancing at the package shortly, customers can easily find the most important information about this product, its form factor, and supported power output.
Before digging into details, let us take a look at the specifications of the Gigabyte P550B 550W, as obtained from the manufacturer's website:
Type: Intel Form Factor ATX 12V v2.31
PFC: Active PFC(>0.9 typical)
Input Voltage: 100-240 Vac(full range)
Input Current: 8-4 A
Input Frequency: 60-50 Hz
Output Capacity: 550W
Dimension: 150 x 140 x 86 mm
Fan Type: 120mm Hydraulic Bearing (HYB) Fan
80 PLUS: Bronze
Efficiency: 85% at typical load
MTBF: >100,000 hours
Power Good Signal: 100-500ms
Hold Up Time: >16ms
Cable Type: Flat, All black
Connectors: ATX/MB 20+4 Pin x 1 : 550mm*1; CPU/EPS 4+4 Pin x 1 : 600mm*1; PCI-e 6+2 Pin x 2 : 550mm+150mm*1; SATA x 6 : 500mm+120mm+120mm*2; 4 Pin Peripheral x 3 + 4-Pin floppy x 1 : 500mm+120mm+120mm+120mm*1
Upon opening the box, you can see all the things you would expect from a non-modular power supply unit package. There is the power supply unit itself and a power cable. It is worth mentioning inside of the box, the power supply unit is protected by two pieces of foam brackets. Since it is a non-modular power supply unit, the cables are connected to the PSU permanently. There is a user instruction manual provided for your convenience. You can also find a bag of screws for you to install it in your computer case.
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Outside
3. Physical Look - Inside
4. Minor Tests and Conclusion