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The Antec TruePower Quattro TP4-850 EC power supply in HAL died, replaced by a Corsair HX850W power supply

Posted by jpluimers on 2011/10/28

After 3.5 years of operation, my Antec TruePower Quattro TP4-850 EC power supply died in machine HAL.

HAL is my storage server, it consists of this hardware:

It is organized as 2 RAID 5 arrays of 7 drives (each netting almost 11TB) each that are mirrored by a nightly job. 2 drives are hot spares. I could have done RAID 50 (now it is twice RAID 5), but this gives me the advantage of having a “yesterdays” view of the storage. Sometimes that is convenient :)

A separate (currently PATA!) disk contains the OS (currently Windows Server 2003), which will be upgraded to a SATA SSD running Windows Server 2008 later this year.

850 watts is perfectly OK, since the RAID drives don’t spin up all at once, and according to Extreme PSU Calculator Lite a 600 watt power supply should suffice.

Is it bad having the power supply to die? I think it is, especially in the way this one dies: it works for 10 minutes, then stops. The fan is still OK, so I don’t know why it dies.

Besides, my 2 Linux boxes both still run on an IBM PC 300PL Pentium 3 machines (that is, after replacing the capacitors a couple of years ago) and – though from 1999 –  they run fine (and are about to be virtualized) without any power supply problems whatsoever.

Anyway: I have replaced it with a Corsair HX850W power supply, which is modulair too, and the Molex 8981 connectors are far easier to insert and retract than the Antec ones.

Being in picky mode today, I still have two tiny things on this new power supply:

  1. Though modular, I couldn’t use the Antec power cables to the hard drives: as the connectors at the PSU side are the same, but the pin layout differs.
  2. The Corsair HDD power cables for SATA and Molex 8981 aren’t colour coded (only black stripes)


PS: Having used HDDs since the mid-80s of last century, it is very nice to see how sizes have been coming down, and capacities going up.

4 Responses to “The Antec TruePower Quattro TP4-850 EC power supply in HAL died, replaced by a Corsair HX850W power supply”

  1. John said

    I had the same PSU die 2 weeks ago. I was also using it in a RAID file server. My server uses 120W normally, 160W if I run something graphically intense. My suspicion is that 850W is not only overkill, but is probably not letting the PSU operate in an effecient way. I replaced it with a 560W Seasonic which means it will run at 21-28% utilisation which will put it up into the 80+% effeciency range.

    • jpluimers said

      Thanks for the tip.

      In the same machine stepped up from a 550 watt power supply because it was not big enough and would cause some of the drives not spinning up everytime.
      Since then, I upgraded the system to 16 drives of 2 TB each (WD2001FASS-00W2B0 WD Caviar Black 2TB). That with a 3ware 9550SXU-16ML RAID card, small boot disk, motherboard with Intel E2140 CPU and PCI VGA card (ATI Radion 43xx series with VEN_1002&DEV_954F, but plain Microsoft VGA drivers) and a bunch of case fans made me do some calculations at the PSU power calculator which gives me a peak of between 600-650 watts of power, so a 850 watt should run below 80% peak.

      Let me know if I overlooked something stupid :)


  2. scott said

    Why didn’t you replace it under warranty it has a 5 year guarantee. Mines of the same age just died so I am just getting it replaced.

    • jpluimers said

      I wasn’t aware I had a 5 year guarantee. Will try to get it replaced under warranty so I have a spare lying around.

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