EnergyKnight SS-350ET-T3: the cheapest Seasonic unit (updated)

Conclusion and evaluation

The Energyknight SS-350ET-T3 survived the combined and crossload testing, but it has not passed in accordance with the ATX specification. So according to my evaluation methodology, it is not deserving of its evaluation. As with so many units, the problem is with crossloading of the +5 V rail. Seasonic tried to meet ATX requirement for at least 20 A from both +3.3 and +5 V rails, but I somehow do not get what good that is if it does not supply the power in spec. Furthermore, having both rails very strong has no reason in 2017. So on one hand, almost nobody will ever encounter this as a problem, on the other hand, Seasonic had pretty much no reason to select such power distribution. And when it did, it has to comply with what it states, if not, there is no way but to fail such unit.

It is actually quite a pity because for quite low price, these units offer nice efficiency and with the latest platform also very low ripple. With load applied to mostly +12V rail(s), the voltage regulation is quite OK, too. The noise is the usual concern, but these units are mostly meant for low-end configurations of system integrators, with about 40 % overhead at least. So they will not reach so high load to actually reach the noise of turbofan propelled airplane, and also many customers don’t mind higher noise. Though it is true that many home users who buy these OEM units in retail are often surprised how very noisy their computer gets with some loading.

On the other hand thanks to such high airflow, the problems arising from bad capacitor choice are somewhat mitigated as the caps get what they need to survive – low temperatures. That and the fact there is now three year warranty even for such cheap units would make them reasonable cheapest choice. The hold up time is not so bad, so really, if it was not for the bad crossload regulation and the incredible noise, it would be quite nice unit in the end. And oh, also for the pretty much non-existent protections, too.

Pros + cheap, yet covered by three-year warranty
+ good efficiency
+ great ripple suppression
+ nice voltage regulation under combined loading
Cons bad cross-loading regulation
no OCP, not really any OPP
useless UVP
so very noisy
bad capacitor choice
Be aware of… /?\ shorter cabling


I thank the Partis company for lending the Energyknight SS-350ET-T3 unit.


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