Antec EarthWatts EA 380D Green 380W

 

Antec has been around for nearly a quarter of a century, making them one of the grandfathers of the modern computer industry. Well known for their cases and power supplies, we've looked at the EarthWatts line a couple of times in years past. Antec has updated the EarthWatts line with their new Green models, sporting a dark green exterior and more environmentally friendly packaging—including the removal of the power cord, since most users already have a surplus.

Unlike so many other power supplies, it's nice to see a sensibly rated unit for a change. 380W is still plenty even for a midrange system, and with optimal efficiency generally coming at 50% load this is a power supply that should run closer to its "sweet spot" when idle as well as under load. There's still enough power on top to run a Core i7 or Phenom X6 processor and a discrete GPU, but you'll want to stick with graphics cards that only require a single PCIe power connection to err on the side of caution.

The EA-380D like any decent modern power supply also carries an 80 Plus certification, this time for the Bronze level. That means the PSU should run at 82% efficiency with a load of 20% (76W), reaching 85% efficiency or more at a load of 50% (180W), and still maintain 82% efficiency at the maximum 380W rated load. This is nothing ground-breaking in late 2010, but it does fit perfectly with moderate systems that can idle at under 100W. Just how green is the new EarthWatts? Let's find out as we explore some of the other features.

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  • Vesperan - Monday, October 04, 2010 - link

    *raises hand*

    Low end PC, with a HD5750 for graphics. Build a couple of months ago, only needs a small power supply.

    That said, if the power supply hadn't have come with the NSK3480 case, I likely would have gotten a bigger power supply.
    Reply
  • enterco - Monday, October 04, 2010 - link

    Yes, I consider this kind of PSU since the first green series. It has been used in Antec NSK4480 case. I consider this a VERY good choice for corporate PCs.
    PS: Not every PSU goes under the reader's desktop.
    Reply
  • cknobman - Monday, October 04, 2010 - link

    Umm I used an Antec 380 Earthwatts in my home server build.

    Dont knock Anandtech because of your short-sightedness you just make yourself look like a fool!

    Great review Anand this power supply is freaking awesome and definitely the best buy you can get for a unit under 400 watts.

    I got mine on the egg after rebates for $29.99 too!!!
    Reply
  • jjcrandall - Monday, October 04, 2010 - link

    I'll raise my hand to this review. I was looking at purchasing this exact model a couple weeks ago for an HTPC. Reply
  • digdugsmug - Wednesday, October 13, 2010 - link

    I used one of these for an esx server. Yeah yeah its not exactly a server PSU but its fine in a home environment. I wanted good efficiency since its always on and low cost, this thing delivers both! Reply
  • pattakosn - Saturday, January 29, 2011 - link

    use a watt-o-meter on your rig and get back to us with your setup and wattage please...

    Maybe you will then like to reconsider reading this review...
    Reply
  • Wineohe - Saturday, October 02, 2010 - link

    Although this might seem small, it is still too big in my opinion to be considered green. If you are claiming to be green, how about something in the 250W range, or smaller! A gamer is probably not going to bother looking at this article anyway because they think they need 1000W, even though they could probably do with much smaller. Come on it's like buying 94 Octane when most of us drive Corollas. Reply
  • khimera2000 - Saturday, October 02, 2010 - link

    I think its becaus there trying to target the mid range market as well ;) they mention something about it in the second to last paragraph in the conclusion... then again you can always check the first page of the review to they have a mention of it there to. Reply
  • JGabriel - Monday, October 04, 2010 - link

    "A gamer is probably not going to bother looking at this article anyway because they think they need 1000W ..."

    Most readers and gamers here are computer and physics literate people - not withstanding the ignorance of the second top-level commenter above - who know they only need 400 -700 watts for a high-end SLI/Crossfire gaming machine, and 200 - 300 watts for anything less. Many of us also build HTPCs for the home, and the occasional machine for friends and/or family, or advise them in their own purchases.

    You really should readjust your expectations and cliches in accordance with that.

    .
    Reply
  • strikeback03 - Tuesday, October 05, 2010 - link

    Well the series does include smaller models, and this is probably what Antec sent them. Reply

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