Antec Basiq Series VP550P ReviewManufacturer: Antec
UK price (as reviewed): £51.19 (inc VAT)
US price (as reviewed):
The VP550P is part of Antec’s Basiq series of power supplies, which is targeted at budget system builders and businesses. To reinforce this, Antec’s website states that the VP550P has ‘no twinkly lights or glittery paint jobs’.
A little digging revealed that Delta actually makes the PSU and, as you can probably tell from its name, it's rated to output a maximum of 550W of power. This is split over a pair of 30A-rated 12V rails, a 24A-rated 3.3V rail, a 24A-rated 5V rail and -12V and 5VSB rails, which are rated to output 0.5A and 2.5A respectively. The first of the two 12V rails powers the 24-pin ATX, Molex, SATA and PCI-E connectors, which leaves the second 12V rail powering the 8-pin EPS12V connector.
Click to enlarge
As the VP550P is a budget PSU, it’s no surprise to see that its cables are captive; modular cables are a luxury rarely afforded at this end of the market. Costs have also been cut with the cable braiding, as only the main 24-pin ATX cable is braided.
The most important quality of a PSU, though, is that it can reliably supply all its claimed wattage for extended periods. In this regard, the VP550P performed admirably, as all its rails stayed within the ATX spec at both 50 per cent and 100 per cent load.
The one cause for concern was the 5V rail; at 100 per
12V ripple at 50 per cent load
12V ripple at 100 per cent load
cent load, this was a little on the weak side, dropping down to just 0.04V above the lower limit of the ATX spec. At full load, the PSU was also noisy, producing a distinct hum.
Efficiency is usually a tough nut to crack with a budget PSU, due to cheaper parts often being used, but the VP550P returned an efficiency of 85 per cent at 50 per cent load and of 82 per cent at 100 per cent load.
This is a great result but it's slightly behind the Thermaltake SP-530PCWEU
, which costs a couple of quid less than the VP550P.
While stability is the most important characteristic of a PSU, there are a number of other tests we run that measure the more subtle differences in how a PSU supplies its power.
The first of these is the ripple test, in which the VP550P performed well – its result of 14.4mV indicates that the voltage delivered by the PSU is consistent over time.
The unit performed less well in our holdup tests, however, as its results of 10ms on the 5V rail and 8ms on the 12V rail were the worst on test.
Given that the Thermaltake SP-530
is just as stable, marginally more efficient and has longer holdup times, as well as producing less noise than the VP550P, we
see no reason to include the latter on your shopping list.