Thermaltake Smart SP-850M 850W Power Supply Review

Thermaltake has been hit and miss in the power supply department over the years. It has produced some excellent PSUs and some that were just "good," and others that did not meet ATX12V specification. Thermaltake comes to us today with its Smart Series PSU that touts Bronze efficiency with its semi-modular design.

Introduction

Today Thermaltake Technology Company is back for another trip through our power supply testing program with a more value oriented product than we last saw from it. As a company, Thermaltake has a rather short history being founded in just 1999, but in that short time it has grown rapidly. While Thermaltake's primary focus has been on thermal solutions, it has for some time now maintained a group of product lines dedicated to power supplies. The early power supplies in these lines were often of lower quality but over the years Thermaltake has taken its power supply business in a new, and quite frankly better, direction as it paired with higher quality OEMs like CWT and Enhance. Today, we are looking at a new product that is part of the SMART Series of power supplies from Thermaltake. The SMART series unit we are looking at today (SP-850M) is produced in conjunction with CWT.

Channel Well Technology (CWT) was founded and began manufacturing power supplies in 1993. Since 1993 Channel Well Technology products have shown up under various guises including Antec, Xclio, 2theMax, CWT, Thermaltake, Xigmatek, and Corsair. While most familiar to our US users from when they used to provide OEM services for Antec, CWT is one of the more complete OEM manufacturers as they have a fairly high level of vertical integration providing transformers all the way up to its well designed independently regulated SMPS.

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Get SMART?

The Thermaltake SP-850M is the 12th power supply we have seen from Thermaltake and the third 850W model. In that time, we have seen a number of high-end products and a few more mainstream products and even an entry level product. Among previous 850W products we have looked at from Thermaltake though, all we have seen have been higher end products. As such, those units have generally been good performers if somewhat handicapped in the value department. Today, the 850W unit we are looking at really should home in on that value issue as it does not appear to be such a high end product. However, even lower end branded products at times carry out-sized premiums for the name. Before moving on to see if that is the case, what does Thermaltake have to say about this unit?

SMART Series

SMART Series Power Supplies are for those who are upgrading, repairing or building a system and want a power supply that just works. Many power supplies can be offered with unnecessary or inflated features that do not benefit the everyday web surfer or gaming system. SMART Series power supplies are tested on live fully functioning systems to ensure the best compatibility with actual system components. This translates into a better user experience and a power supply offering that is designed to work and work well.

With that targeting of this product in mind, let's move on and see what we have to look forward to when we purchase the Thermaltake SP-850M power supply in terms of documentation, accessories, cable count, rail layout, output characteristics, and general build quality.