Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W Power Supply Review

paulktreg - 2010-08-12 13:58:07 in Power Supplies
Category: Power Supplies
Reviewed by: paulktreg   
Reviewed on: October 3, 2010
Price: $129.99

Introduction:

Xion Inc., also trading as Axpertec, is a relatively new company founded in 2002 that specialises in enclosures and components for the computer market. If I’m being honest, I’ve never heard of the company before and it’s strange that they trade under two different names. Xion in North America and Axpertec (AXP) in Europe. Their product offerings include a wide range of PC enclosures and power supplies, CPU coolers and fans, HDD docking stations, fan controllers, card readers, notebook coolers, USB hubs, HDD enclosures and cables. Interestingly, the Noctua range of CPU coolers and fans are included on their website. Although, after a little research I can’t find any links between the two organisations.

The Xion/AXP range of power supplies includes the Lan Party Edition SuperNova 800W and 1000W, a Gold series 700W unit, Power Real and SuperNova units ranging from 700W to 1100W and range of lower power units which includes the Simple 630W and a 500W and 450W unit. This time around I’m going to have a look at the Xion 90+ Gold Series 700W LAN Party Edition power supply, a modular unit with 80 Plus Gold certification. (The power supply is actually listed under AXP on the 80 Plus Org website under its model number of AXP-700W14FG).

Closer Look:

The Xion Lan Party Edition 700W power supply comes in a predominantly dark green, gloss finished box with a carry handle. The top of the box shows a photograph of the power supply, a Xion Lan Party Edition sticker covering an AXP logo with the power supply wattage clearly shown and an 80 Plus Gold logo. The base of the box is plain gloss black.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The front face of the box repeats most of the information given on the top with the addition of some of the main features which include its modular design, SATA ready, PCI Express, active PFC and 140mm silent cooling fan. The opposite face is identical.

 

The side panel includes a specification table, types and quantities of the connectors, comprehensive feature list and on the opposite face a shorter feature list in several different languages.

 

 

Lift the lid and the inner flap that is used to mount the carry handle and the first thing you see is the user manual sat on top of the modular cables housed in a hard clear plastic case. The bubble wrapped power supply sits underneath, with the accessories tucked down the side on top of the power supply's captive cables.

 

 

The bubble wrapped power supply and box contents include the power cord, user manual and four thumb type power supply mounting screws.

 

 

The Xion Lan Party Edition 700W power supply is well packed and comes with a basic set of accessories (enough to get by) but a few cable ties would have been a nice addition.

Closer Look:

The Xion Lan Party Edition 700W power supply enclosure is finished off with a slightly textured satin black paint which always looks good.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

The rear of the power supply comes with IEC mains input connector, on/off switch and a hexagonal holed exhaust grill which occupies every inch of spare space for maximum cooling. The modular cable connectors are mounted on the front face of the power supply and something I don’t like to see on power supplies for the enthusiast market, identical connectors. What does this mean? It means that you can plug any of the modular cables into any of the connectors so they will all have to carry the 3.3 V, 5.0 V and 12V rails, more on this later.

 

 

One of the side panels carries the specification label which includes an AXP not Xion brand mark, a specification table, agency approval logos and a warning about the dangers of going inside the power supply, not advised if you don’t know what you’re doing! No information on the opposite face.

 

 

The base of the power supply is blank and the top of the power supply shows the 140mm cooling fan with an AXP logo at its center. The use of a 140mm cooling fan on an 80 Plus Gold certified power supply is unusual but it should keep the power supply cool and the noise to a minimum.

 

 

The captive cable set consists of a 20+4-pin motherboard connector, a single 4+4-pin ATX12V/EPS12V connector and a daisy chained 6-pin and 6+2-pin PCI-E connector. The cables are fully sleeved all the way into the power supply which is nice to see but I will have more to say on the configuration later. The modular cable set will provide all the connectors you will need and probably more than the average enthusiasts will ever require. The construction quality is good with black braided sleeving used throughout.

 

 

The large 140mm cooling fan is an RL4T B1402512M ball bearing design by Globe, rated at 12 V, 0.3 A. The printed circuit board is well laid out and uses a bank of two aluminium heat sinks. What I noticed immediately is the labelling on the printed circuit board which tells me this should be a multi 12 V rail power supply with 12V1, 12V2, up to 12V5, but the current limiting may be disabled so let’s reserve judgement and see how it performs at the testing stage.

 

 

The wet electrolytic capacitors are by CapXon and rated at 105 degrees centigrade which is the preferred working temperature. There are also some solid state devices thrown into the mix.

 

 

The build quality overall is satisfactory with sleeving used to tidy things up, adhesive used in the appropriate places to secure components and prevent vibration. Sheets of insulation material have been used to prevent shorts to the case and other parts of the circuitry. Let’s have a look at the features and specification and then see how well it performs.

Specification:

 

Review Sample: Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W Power Supply, Part Number AXP-700W14FG.

 

Ratings Table:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) Power Supply Specification Table
AC Input
115-240V     10A     50-60Hz
DC Output
+3V3
+5V
+12V
-12V
+5VSB
Maximum Load
24A
24A
58A
0.5A
3A
Maximum Combined
Wattage
120W
696W
6W
15W
700W

 

System Protection:

The only information given for system protection is given in the feature list below.

 

Safety & Agency Approvals:

CUL, FCC, TUV, CE, C-Tick, CB & BSMI.

 

Power Supply Physical Characteristics:

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) Power Supply Physical Characteristics
Weight
Length
Width
Height
5.0lbs/2.3kg
7.0in/180mm
5.9in/150mm
3.4in/87mm

 

Power Supply Connectors:

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) Power Supply Connectors
Connector Type
Qty
Motherboard 20+4 Pin
1
ATX12V/EPS12V 4+4 Pin
1
PCI-E 6 Pin
3
PCI-E 6+2 Pin
3
SATA Power 15 Pin
8
Peripheral 4 Pin
7
FDD 4 Pin
1

 

Power Supply Cable Lengths:

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) Power Supply Cable Set
Cable Type
Cable Length/Connector Spacing’s
Qty
Captive
PSU > 22" > Motherboard 20+4 Pin
1
Captive
PSU > 22" > ATX12V/EPS12V 4+4 Pin
1
Captive
PSU > 22" > PCI-E 6 Pin > 6" > PCI-E 6+2 Pin
1
Modular
PSU > 22" > PCI-E 6 Pin > 6" > PCI-E 6+2 Pin
2
Modular
PSU > 22" > SATA > 6" > SATA > 6" > SATA > 6" > SATA
2
Modular
PSU > 22" > Peripheral > 6" > Peripheral > 6" > Peripheral > 6" > Peripheral
1
Modular
PSU > 22" > Peripheral > 6" > Peripheral > 6" > Peripheral > 6" > FDD
1

 

Features:

Exactly as printed on the box.

Testing:

For more information on how we test our power supplies, please browse our testing methodology.

Electrical Safety:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Electrical Safety Test Class 1
Manufacturer/Model
Pass/Fail
Xion Lan Party Edition 700W
Pass

 

Short Circuit Protection:

I short circuited the 3V3, 5V0 and the 12V rails in turn. The power supply did shut down, and once the short was removed the unit switched off for at least one second and resumed normal operation. Although listed here at the beginning of the testing section, I tend to leave this test until the very end, in case it doesn't quite go to plan.

 

DC Output Voltage Load Regulation:

 

Mains Input Voltage 110VAC

 

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) DC Output Voltage Load Regulation
Supply = 110VAC/50Hz
PSU DC Rail
Measured Voltage(V)
3V3
3.37
5V0
5.18
+12V
12.36
-12V
12.07
5VSB
5.15
Total PSU DC Loading = 0W (0% of Rated Maximum Output Power)

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) DC Output Voltage Load Regulation
Supply = 110VAC/50Hz
PSU
DC Rail
Rail Loading Amps (A)
Rail Loading Watts (W)
Measured Voltage (V)
ATX12V V2.2 Limits (V)
Pass/Fail
+3V3
3.21
10.82
3.37
3.135 – 3.465
Pass
+5V
4.91
25.38
5.17
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
+12V
7.79
96.28
12.36
11. – 12.6
Pass
-12V
0.34
4.00
11.79
10.8 – 13.2
Pass
+5VSB
2.17
10.94
5.04
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
Total PSU DC Loading = 147W (21% of Rated Maximum Output Power)

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) DC Output Voltage Load Regulation
Supply = 110VAC/50Hz
PSU
DC Rail
Rail Loading Amps (A)
Rail Loading Watts (W)
Measured Voltage (V)
ATX12V V2.2 Limits (V)
Pass/Fail
+3V3
8.48
28.66
3.38
3.135 – 3.465
Pass
+5V
4.96
25.64
5.17
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
+12V
21.58
266.51
12.35
11. – 12.6
Pass
-12V
0.35
4.13
11.80
10.8 – 13.2
Pass
+5VSB
2.07
10.41
5.03
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
Total PSU DC Loading = 335W (48% of Rated Maximum Output Power)

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) DC Output Voltage Load Regulation
Supply = 110VAC/50Hz
PSU
DC Rail
Rail Loading Amps (A)
Rail Loading Watts (W)
Measured Voltage (V)
ATX12V V2.2 Limits (V)
Pass/Fail
+3V3
8.41
28.26
3.36
3.135 – 3.465
Pass
+5V
9.98
51.40
5.15
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
+12V
50.76
625.87
12.33
11. – 12.6
Pass
-12V
0.35
4.13
11.81
10.8 – 13.2
Pass
+5VSB
2.07
10.39
5.02
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
Total PSU DC Loading = 720W (103% of Rated Maximum Output Power)

 

Mains Input Voltage 230VAC

 

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) DC Output Voltage Load Regulation
Supply = 230VAC/50Hz
PSU DC Rail
Measured Voltage(V)
3V3
3.37
5V0
5.18
+12V
12.36
-12V
12.07
5VSB
5.15
Total PSU DC Loading = 0W (0% of Rated Maximum Output Power)

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) DC Output Voltage Load Regulation
Supply = 230VAC/50Hz
PSU
DC Rail
Rail Loading Amps (A)
Rail Loading Watts (W)
Measured Voltage (V)
ATX12V V2.2 Limits (V)
Pass/Fail
+3V3
3.24
10.92
3.37
3.135 – 3.465
Pass
+5V
4.95
25.59
5.17
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
+12V
7.84
96.90
12.36
11. – 12.6
Pass
-12V
0.34
4.01
11.79
10.8 – 13.2
Pass
+5VSB
2.17
10.94
5.04
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
Total PSU DC Loading = 148W (21% of Rated Maximum Output Power)

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) DC Output Voltage Load Regulation
Supply = 230VAC/50Hz
PSU
DC Rail
Rail Loading Amps (A)
Rail Loading Watts (W)
Measured Voltage (V)
ATX12V V2.2 Limits (V)
Pass/Fail
+3V3
8.44
28.53
3.38
3.135 – 3.465
Pass
+5V
4.93
25.44
5.16
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
+12V
21.44
264.78
12.35
11.4 – 12.6
Pass
-12V
0.35
4.13
11.80
10.8 – 13.2
Pass
+5VSB
2.07
10.43
5.04
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
Total PSU DC Loading = 333W (48% of Rated Maximum Output Power)

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) DC Output Voltage Load Regulation
Supply = 230VAC/50Hz
PSU
DC Rail
Rail Loading Amps (A)
Rail Loading Watts (W)
Measured Voltage (V)
ATX12V V2.2 Limits (V)
Pass/Fail
+3V3
8.38
28.24
3.37
3.135 – 3.465
Pass
+5V
9.91
51.04
5.15
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
+12V
50.33
620.57
12.33
11.4 – 12.6
Pass
-12V
0.35
4.13
11.81
10.8 – 13.2
Pass
+5VSB
2.07
10.39
5.02
4.75 – 5.25
Pass
Total PSU DC Loading = 714W (102% of Rated Maximum Output Power)

 

The Xion Lan Party Edition 700W power supply produced an excellent set of results in this section that matched or even exceeded the results produced by many high end power supplies. The rails remained steady, as illustrated by the straight line graphs, from zero to full load. The 12V rail is perhaps a little high but it's well within the limits set down by the ATX12V V2.2 regulations. No problems here so let's move on.

Testing:

Efficiency and Power Factor:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The efficiency levels of the Xion Lan Party Edition 700W don't quite make it to the levels required for 80 Plus Gold status following the OCC testing methodology but they are certainly up there with other high end power supplies. The power factor levels, which are rarely a problem, are well above the required level of 0.9 at 50% loading.

 

 

Efficiency levels are one or two percentage points higher with a 230 VAC source (which is usually the case) and nearly hit 80 Plus Gold levels of 87%, 90% and 87% at 20%, 50% and 100% DC loading. The 80 Plus Gold certificate is however valid only at an AC input voltage level of 115 VAC with predefined rail loading, levels I can't exactly hit with the test equipment available. The results are still pretty good and the measurements obtained are certainly on par with other high end 80 Plus Gold power supplies I have tested.

 

AC Ripple On DC Outputs:

 

I have consistently found the AC ripple levels on the DC rails to be more or less equal with a 110VAC or 230VAC mains supply. The results given below are for 230VAC only but I will continue to check the levels at 110VAC during testing and publish them below if there are any significant differences.

 

AC ripple/noise on the +3V3 rail at 230VAC

Oscilloscope settings: Amplitude = 10mv/div, Timebase = 5uS/div

 

AC ripple/noise on the +5V0 rail at 230VAC

Oscilloscope settings: Amplitude = 10mv/div, Timebase = 5uS/div

 

AC ripple/noise on the +12V rail at 230VAC

Oscilloscope settings: Amplitude = 10mv/div, Timebase = 5uS/div

 

AC ripple/noise on the -12V rail at 230VAC

Oscilloscope settings: Amplitude = 10mv/div, Timebase = 5uS/div

 

AC ripple/noise on the +5VSB rail at 230VAC

Oscilloscope settings: Amplitude = 10mv/div, Timebase = 5uS/div

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) AC Ripple/Noise
Supply = 230VAC/50Hz DC Loading = 714W
DC Rail
+3V3
+5V0
+12V
-12V0
+5VSB
ATX12 Max (mV p-p)
50
50
120
120
50
Ripple (mV p-p)
38
30
36
58
42
Pass/Fail
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass

The Xion Lan Party Edition 700W power supply produced a satisfactory set of results in this section. The AC noise/ripple on the DC rails, measured at what is effectively a small overload of 20W (720W), were a little higher than other units in this class but still below the levels required by the ATX12V V2.2 specification.

Testing:

Temperature, Noise Levels and Fan Speeds:

I am not going to give a pass or fail in this section, as the ATX12V V2.2 does not really have any references on which to base a decision.

Temperatures are purely for information only, as there are too many variables involved when installed in a case, which, by the way, it wasn't. Ambient temperature, processor cooling efficiency and case cooling fans all play their part on the temperature of the air entering the power supply and consequently the temperature of the air leaving it. No valid conclusions can be made from this test.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Xion/AXP Lan Party Edition 700W (AXP-700W14FG) Temperature & Fan Speeds
Supply = 110VAC/230VAC
DC Loading(W)
Temp In (°C)
Temp Out (°C)
Δ Temp (°C)
Fan Speed (RPM)
0
N/A
N/A
N/A
686/686
147/148
20.9/21.6
25.6/25.9
4.7/4.4
687/691
335/333
21.3/21.6
30.4/28.9
9.1/7.3
693/691
845/846
21.0/22.2
48.9/45.8
27.5/23.6
696/697

The fan hardly moved from its no load speed of approximately 700 RPM throughout testing which gave rise to one of the highest temperature differentials I have seen of 27.5 °C which also meant it's one of the quietest power supplies I've tested. I ran the power supply for over four hours on full DC load without any problem but that was on the work bench, out of a case and with an ambient air temperature of approximately 21 °C. I have tested around forty power supplies for OCC and none of them have behaved in this way and the fan has always ramped up to full or near full speed at maximum DC load.

Conclusion:

 

Price Per the Watt:

Power Supply Xion Lan Party Edition 700W at $126.99 = $0.19/Watt (09-2010)

 

I've never heard of Xion or Axpertec but the Lan Party Edition 700W performed beyond my expectations. The DC load voltage regulation, DC quality and efficiency of the Xion Lan Party Edition 700W power supply is certainly approaching the levels expected of higher end power supplies but I have one or two reservations regarding the modular cable arrangement and performance of the thermally controlled cooling fan.

I don't like the use of universal modular cable connectors or daisy chained 6-pin and 6+2-pin PCI-E connectors on the same cable because they can and will lead to problems. It's not something normally seen on high end power supplies. The use of a universal 8-pin modular cable connector means the 3V3 and 5V0 rails have to be available to cater for the peripheral and SATA modular cables leaving only six ways available for PCI-E use. The first problem here is that the 6+2-pin PCI-E connector requires three ways for the 12V rail and five ways for the ground (0V) rail so something is going to have to double up with only six ways available at the modular cable connector for eight wires at the PCI-E plug. I'm of the opinion that it's cutting corners to keep costs down and I would much rather pay a few extra dollars for dedicated cable and connectors for PCI-E and peripherals usage. Most, if not all of the high end power supply manufacturers would never daisy chain a 6-pin and 8-pin PCI-E connector on the same cable. They come individually connected to their own dedicated cable. The GTX 480 graphics card for example, requires one 6-pin PCI-E and one 8-pin PCI-E connector, so how do you supply the auxiliary power to this card? The Xion Lan Party Edition 700W power supply has one captive cable with a 6-pin PCI-E and then a daisy chained 6+2-pin PCI-E connector available and it will be used by some builders to power the GTX 480 - not ideal!

The thermally controlled cooling fan threw me a little because I've never seen behaviour like it on other power supplies and full DC load has always resulted in the fan speed ramping up to full or near full speed, but not this time. I contacted Aspertec and they informed me that because I was testing out of case with an ambient temperature of approximately 21°C the internal temperature of the power supply was not reaching a high enough level to trigger the thermal fan control. I haven't got a hot case (something to think about) or a suitable PC that can put a 700W load on the power supply so testing the operation of the cooling fan thermal control proved difficult. I did however, manage to locate the temperature sensor on the secondary heat sink and raise its temperature a little whilst under full load on the bench. It took only a few degrees rise in temperature to cause the fan speed to increase so following the OCC testing methodology, I have to presume the thermal fan control is working as the manufacturer intended although I do have some minor reservations about its sensitivity.

So what can be said about the Xion Lan Party Edition 700W power supply? Great electrical performance, minor problems, in my opinion, with the modular cable configuration and a thermally controlled fan that would appear to function with changes in temperature but not quite as I would have expected. Changes to the modular cable configuration and thermal fan sensitivity would turn what is already a good power supply into a great one and I have no hesitation in awarding the Xion Lan Party Edition 700W power supply a OCC Bronze award.

 

Pros:

 

Cons: