Zalman ZM600-LX – dual forward power supply

Introducing the Zalman ZM600-LX

Here we have another cheap unit from Zalman. Well, actually not from Zalman directly (considering they want nothing to do with us after their last debacle), rather this time we obtained one from a local distributor. He specifically asked me to check this cheap series which I’ve not yet seen (unlike most of their other lines). The ZM600-LX started as a very cheap mainstream unit at around 2013 but the price dropped a bit over the years. It now sells for as low as 1100 CZK (42 Euros in Poland, 45 in Germany) with a 2-year warranty. That means it now falls into the low-end market segment.

Zalman ZM600-LX

The company that supplied the unit is aware of the fact it is one of the cheapest Zalman units and that we shouldn’t expect much. While the OEM is the same Hui Cheng Electronic Technology as of the LE series, this model should be noticeably better. It has no efficiency certification as it is rated for only 200–240V AC operation with the actual efficiency reaching the basic 80 PLUS rating. But the 80 PLUS 230V EU rating requires the same efficiency figures as for 80 PLUS Bronze at 115 V. The unit not only has some PFC (unlike the LE series), but actually active correction. Not to say that I’m holding my breath or anything, but this unit is definitely better already. Zalman states it even has protections such as OPP and OCP, so I’m very interested to see that in action.


The ZM600-LX has a single powerful +12V rail capable of delivering up to 45 A. The stand-by rail is rather weak at just 2 A, and the −12 V provides the usual minimum of 0.3 A. The +3.3 V can supply 24 A and +5 V 16 A. These are rather reasonable figures so there is a chance the unit will manage to pass the crossload voltage regulation tests. Their combined output is 130 watts.

Packaging and accessories

The box that the ZM600-LX comes in is rather small as there is only the unit itself and a few small items inside of it. As far as information goes, there’s not much of it on the front of the box. And as always, each model of the LX series comes under different color. As you can see, the ZM600-LX has blue box and label.


The situation is rather similar on the back side with only a little information. But on the sides we can see some in-depth details in the form of internal shots. It shows us that there’s a full 14-pin secondary supervisor IC which should mean some form of OCP could really be present here.


There’s also the power distribution table which shows us that there’s actually two versions of this unit: This one just for nominal 230V operation and then there’s the full-range which most likely has some slightly better PFC silicon and/or a larger coil.


The ZM600-LX is packed in just a bubble-wrap bag (a rather tough one though). There is also a manual (which states something about a “two forward switching power supply”), power cord, screws and a few zip ties. For those the unit gets a whole point. For its price, it is surprising it comes in any packaging at all…


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