150W psu + 200w pico + 80 - 300w consumption?

soerena

Case Bender
Original poster
Mar 6, 2017
2
0
First off, hello everyone and thanks for having this awesome community!

Disclaimer: I'm not a pro in assembling PC's, but I have some experience with electronics in other fields :-)

So, I bought this very small form factor PC from a guy who makes a living off selling them in Denmark. My specs are:
* Intel i7 4790s 3,2 ghz
* 16 gb ram (2 8gb slots)
* 1 500gb SSD
* The motherboard is some mini itx version, but not quite sure which. It only has 1 pci-e slot which was initially fitted with a * firewire card that i used for audio hardware.
* z3-atx-200w http://www.ebay.com/itm/Z3-ATX-200-...C-ATX-power-supply-with-16V-24V-/111322355876
* 19v 7,9A 150w PSU (i suspect some chinese model of some sort.. black regular enclosure)

Recently, I wanted to use another pc for audio production and instead make this a tiny gamer pc so I went and bought Elsa's newly released geforce gtx 1050 ti sp (single port) card to put in my pci port instead of the firewire card.

The 1050 sp is rated at 75W, and though I must admit I wasn't completely sure about power consumption in total - I gave it a go. Games seemed to be running just fine, Arma 3, Company of heroes 2 etc.. until today when I was at a LAN and playing Rainbow Six Siege, my pc suddenly just turned off. I saw the PSU led had gone off, so I suspect it's the PSU that had been overheated - it was indeed very hot.
... I immidately went and (should have done this in the first place yes, i know) a power meter that I plugged in my wall socket so I could monitor what was actually being spent. It should be noted that this was just a cheap power meter from a regular wall mart-ish store in Denmark.. I'm not sure if you can count on these to be precise, but I would expect so.

So, my ampere readings were just fine around maximum of 3 amps (remember it was rated at 7,9), but wattage showed up to 300 watts when playing gpu intense games. .. if my basic knowledge of electronics are in place, this would actually mean that wattage could go up as high as 669w !!! ( -> 3 amps * 223 V = 669w), or am I wrong?

After this experience I've become very wary of starting gpu heavy games since I would really not want to fry anything other than maybe the PSU...

Do you guys have any suggestions what I should/ should not do from here on?

Very much appreciated.
All the best,
Søren
 

aquelito

King of Cable Management
Piccolo PC
Feb 16, 2016
948
1,116
My only advice would be to drop the Z3-ATX-200 and purchase a proper DC board, like the HDPLEX 160 DC-ATX.

Last year I build a small PC around an A8 7600 (45W mode) and the Z3-ATX-200, which did not stay more than a few days before I replace it.
 

robbee

Master of Cramming
Silver Supporter
Sep 24, 2016
572
708
You're mixing up a couple of things. The Brick is rated at 7.9 amps on the DC output side and you're measuring the AC input side.

300w seems unrealistically high for this hardware. Either the reading is off, or the brick is very inneficient. The fact that it was really hot, might indicate that it is indeed not so efficient, but 300w should put it barely at 50% efficiency. Could you share a picture of the sticker that's on it?
 
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soerena

Case Bender
Original poster
Mar 6, 2017
2
0
Hi @aquelito could you maybe elaborate a bit, what's bad about the z3-atx-200? Is it just bad quality or?
And why did you have to replace yours? Same problem as me or?

@robbee aah okay, well i also thought it seemed like a pretty high reading compared to the specs. So what you're saying is that some (possibly a lot) of power will be lost (converted to heat) in the brick before it reaches the pico - and thus my reading on the AC side will be higher than the watts the pico is actually consuming? Here's a picture of the brick:

https://attachment.outlook.office.net/owa/spii4@hotmail.com/service.svc/s/GetFileAttachment?id=AQMkADAwATZiZmYAZC04NTM5LTZhNDEtMDACLTAwCgBGAAADMqKHfRS9K0uZkqLS5zwrAgcAimLIV0+elE2XzkW+gw7bPQAAAgEMAAAAimLIV0+elE2XzkW+gw7bPQAAAJrNXp8AAAABEgAQAE2AXG2MFG1AvRljfFFxcQAB&X-OWA-CANARY=vHn8KxkCrkWptteJ2g93n1AdwLgtbtQYvGOoMhWowVSlbIjNRbscetTv6hiKN6qlg0YiznDyaZ8.&token=26d9d00e-711c-4352-b9a9-96c6e4638511&owa=outlook.live.com&isc=1&isImagePreview=True

EDIT: wondering if just getting a new brick would be a good idea and then keep my z3-atx-200.. is there any way to detect whether it's the z3 or the brick that's giving up?

EDIT II: When thinking about it, with my setup wouldn't it make more sense to get an hdplex 300 http://www.hd-plex.com/HDPLEX-300W-Hi-Fi-DC-ATX-Power-Supply-16V-24V-Wide-Range-Voltage-Input.html instead of the 160 - just to be on the safe side? Or is that just overkill?
 
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aquelito

King of Cable Management
Piccolo PC
Feb 16, 2016
948
1,116
@soerena : even with custom heatsinks, the Z3-ATX-200 would quickly overheat and the system would eventually shut down.

Anyway, Picobox official product page states a max load of 10A on the 12V rail. Its actual efficiency seems pretty poor ; I'm not sure it can even handle a 120W power load.

As you say, you'd better replace it by :

- a HDPLEX 300W : most reliable but most expensive solution. You can't beat their support though.
- a Picobox X300 : cheaper than HDPLEX but less efficient.
- or a "new" G-Unique DC board, which is the most compact and economical solution. We're going to see reviews very soon I think.

Regarding the AC adapter choice, this 230W HP unit drives a GTX 1060 and i5 6400T without a sweat :)
83% efficiency minimum which means it can output around 190W.
IMO one of the best ratio price / performance.
 
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