If you follow closely our power supply reviews you know that two models we reviewed from Huntkey Green Star series – 400 W, sold in the US as Dynex 400 W, and 450 W – exploded during our tests. So we decided to get a more “powerful” model, 550 W, to see if it has the same fate as its sisters. Is Green Star 550 W a good power supply or it is as flawed as the members from the Green Star family? Check it out.
Updated 12/29/2008: There was a lot of confusion about correctly identifying this power supply. First we thought it was a Green Star model. Then we found out that it had the same part number from the Huntkey V-Power 550 W unit (LW-6550SG) and since Huntkey does not list Green Star products on their website anymore we though we were then facing a V-Power model, so we changed the text to say that this unit was in fact a V-Power model. Then with the help of our reader Travis Chen we could finally correctly id this unit and it is in fact a member of the Green Star series, as you can check here. What kind of company labels different products with the same part number? We've got an e-mail from Huntkey accusing us of reviewing a "fake" unit, since the label from the model we reviewed doesn't have "V-Power" written on it. Funny enough the label from the V-Power 550 W unit posted on their website also doesn't have "V-Power" written on it. Once again, how could we correctly identify this unit if on its label there is no mention to its series, only the "LW-6550SG" part number, which is used by two different products? This makes us speculate that Green Star 550 W and V-Power 550 W are internally the same product (we don't see any other reason a manufacturer using the same part number on two different products). We are going to buy a V-Power 550 W model to review it and clarify this issue. The only real difference we could see between Green Star 550 W and V-Power 550 W labels was the current limit for +12V1, 16 A on Green Star and 18 A on V-Power. Since the unit we reviewed had "16 A" for +12V1 on its label we get the information that we were in fact facing a Green Star unit, not a V-Power one. Another smaller difference was the presence of only two SATA power plugs on the reviewed unit, while V-Power has four of them. Here I ask my most sincere apologies to all our readers, but, once again, we don't have a crystal ball and the manufacturer doesn't help by naming different products using the same name. If we got confused imagine you, a normal user.
By the way, the naming scheme Huntkey uses work like this. "SG" means 140 mm fan and "HG" means 120 mm fan. When the model has a passive PFC circuit then a "P" is added at the end. So an LW-6550HG would be the same unit with a 120 mm fan, and an LW-6550SGP would be the same reviewed unit with passive PFC.
It is good to remember that we have already reviewed a model from a different series (Titan 650 W, sold in the US as Rocketfish 700 W) from Huntkey and it survived our tests. So the problems we had with Huntkey products (power supplies exploding while you try to pull its labeled power) so far only happened with members from their Green Star series.
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Figure 1: Huntkey Green Star 550 W (LW-6550SG).
This power supply is 6 19/64” (160 mm) deep, features a 140 mm fan on its bottom and doesn’t have active PFC circuit, so Huntkey can’t sell this product in Europe (as you can assume from our discussion above, there is a version from this unit with passive PFC). In Figure 1, you can see that it has a voltage selection switch, feature usually present on models without this circuit.
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Figure 2: Huntkey Green Star 550 W (LW-6550SG).
This unit comes with the main motherboard cable using a 20/24-pin connector and two ATX12V connectors that together form an EPS12V connector. This unit also features two 6-pin auxiliary power connectors for video card using independent cables, which is great, one cable containing three peripheral power plugs, one cable containing three peripheral power plugs and one floppy disk drive power plug and one cable containing two SATA power plugs.
The main drawback from this power supply is the presence of only two SATA power plugs, which is insufficient for today’s applications. If you have more than one hard disk drive you will need to convert one of the peripheral power plugs into a SATA power plug using an adapter.
All peripheral cables – including the auxiliary power cables for video cards – use 20 AWG wires, which are thinner than the wires used by other good power supplies on the same power range. The wires on the ATX12V/EPS12V cable and on the main motherboard cable are 18 AWG, though.
Now let’s take an in-depth look inside this power supply.