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My experience with the Thermaltake Smart 500W 80+ White PSU with 120mm Fan (2024)

My thoughts on Thermaltake Smart 500W PSU: efficiency, cooling, quality, and value.
Walter Biggs

Cartesian Mathematics Foundation


February 7, 2024


I recently picked up the Thermaltake Smart 500W PSU for my mid-range PC build. After spending some time with it, I wanted to share my insights on its performance and features. It’s advertised as a cost-effective power supply that doesn’t skimp on quality, so I was curious to see how it holds up in everyday use.


Property Value Property Value
Model Name TMT-PSSPD0500NPCWUSW Brand Thermaltake
Compatible Devices Personal Computer Connector Type atx, eps, pci e
Output Wattage 500 Watts Form Factor ATX12V / EPS12V
Wattage 500 Cooling Method Air
Item Dimensions LxWxH 8.9 x 4 x 7 inches Item Weight 3.8 Pounds


Efficiency and Performance

A power supply unit with efficiency rating label visible

When it comes to the efficiency and performance of the Thermaltake Smart 500W PSU, there are several factors worth considering:

80 PLUS White Certified Efficiency - ensures at least 80% efficiency under typical load conditions.

Active Power Factor Correction (PFC) - promotes cleaner and more reliable power.

Stable Single +12V Rail - for high-end system performance.

Continuous Output at +40°C - can reliably deliver 500W power in higher temperature environments.

From a practical perspective, the PSU’s ability to maintain 80% efficiency is a standout feature. In my use, it has meant lower electricity bills and less waste heat inside the case. Moreover, the active PFC has provided a sense of reliability in power delivery, which is critical for system stability.

The single +12V rail design is noteworthy as well. It not only simplifies installation by removing the need to balance power distribution across multiple rails but also ensures that power-hungry components get the power they need when they need it. This design is especially beneficial for graphics-intensive tasks where the GPU demands consistent power supply.

The PSU’s capability to deliver continuous output at higher temperatures is reassuring, as this speaks to its resilience and durability under stress. I’ve observed that even when my system is under a heavy load, the Smart 500W doesn’t falter, providing a consistent level of power to all my components.

However, it is not without its drawbacks. For highly demanding systems or those that may look to significant future upgrades, the 500 watts of power might be limiting. Moreover, a lack of modular cables means managing extra cables that aren’t in use, which could be a nuisance for some users aiming for a sleek, uncluttered build.

In my experience, the Thermaltake Smart 500W PSU has met the demands of my mid-range setup with aplomb, proving to be a reliable component of my system. Its top features offer peace of mind that performance won’t be compromised, especially given the clear design decisions aimed at stable and efficient operation. While it may not be the ultimate fit for power users with cutting-edge requirements, for those whose rigs fall within its power provision capabilities, it’s an option that promises and delivers solid performance. However, should there be links to important research papers or other reputable sources on the efficiency and performance aspects of PSUs, including such links would be beneficial, yet no specific such sources come to mind for this personal experience account.

Cooling and Noise Level

A close-up of a silent fan within a psu

The cooling and noise level of the Thermaltake Smart 500W PSU is one of its standout features, reflecting the attention to detail in its design for a power supply within its price range. The following points encapsulate my experience:

  • The integrated 120mm cooling fan is impressive at providing decent airflow.

  • Low noise level even under sustained loads, which is pleasant during lengthy gaming sessions.

From the outset, the 120mm fan included with this unit caught my attention. It is engineered to offer optimal airflow and does so with minimal noise, which gets a hefty thumbs-up from me. I’ve had units in the past that have been disruptive, but I can genuinely say that the Smart 500W remains fairly whisper-quiet, particularly when my PC is not under intense use.

However, it’s worth noting that under heavier loads, there is a noticeable ramp-up in fan activity, but it never reaches a point where I would consider it intrusive. I’ve had this PSU running for hours on end and the sound doesn’t become a distraction, which is a relief given how close my setup is to my workspace.

I have observed that the cooling efficiency manages to maintain a stable temperature within my system, helping to ensure reliable performance from the PSU and other internal components. I appreciate the fan’s intelligent design, which appears to adjust its speed dynamically based on the system’s cooling requirements at any given time. This smart functionality is particularly beneficial for maintaining the longevity of the PSU and ensuring that it doesn’t overheat.

Although I’ve been satisfied with the overall cooling performance and noise level, I am aware there are more advanced options in the market that feature things like zero RPM fan modes at low loads or custom fan curves. These features are generally found in higher-end models, though, and considering the Smart 500W’s affordability, I find its cooling and noise performance to hit the right mark for me.

In summary, for a budget-friendly PSU, the Thermaltake Smart 500W offers more than just basic cooling and quiet operation. It’s not the absolute best out there, but for regular use and even for some mid-tier gaming, it certainly holds its own. I’m quite content with the compromise between cost and the quiet, efficient cooling this PSU brings to my PC build.

Build Quality and Features

A robust well-assembled psu without its cover

When I first took out the Thermaltake Smart 500W PSU from its packaging, I was struck by its sturdy construction. The unit felt solid in my hands, a testament to the high-quality components that the brand advertises. It’s got a nice weight to it that reassures you it’s not made from cheap materials.

The features that initially caught my attention included:

  • 80 PLUS White Certification, ensuring at least 80% efficiency under typical loads.

  • A single +12V rail design, which is great for delivering stable power to high-end components.

  • Active PFC (Power Factor Correction) which is a nice touch for energy efficiency.

  • Comprehensive protections like Over Power (OPP), Over Voltage (OVP), and Short Circuit (SCP) which offer peace of mind against power surges and equipment damage.

However, as I delved deeper into the use of the PSU, I noticed a few points that could be considered drawbacks. The PSU is non-modular, which while cost-effective, can be a bit of a hassle with extra cables cluttering the case. This might not be the best option for those who prioritize a sleek build with minimalist cabling. Also, the lack of multiple PCIe 8-pin connectors means it might not be the best fit for setups with more demanding GPUs that require separate power connectors.

Despite this, the 120mm cooling fan has been a standout feature for me, managing to deliver good airflow while maintaining a low noise level. The fan’s quiet operation even under load has been consistent.

Overall, the build quality appears sturdy enough for a power supply at this price point. It doesn’t have the bells and whistles of higher-priced, modular units with more advanced cable management solutions, but it provides the essentials with commendable efficiency.

This PSU may not have the appeal of a fully modular power supply with customizable cables, but it has held up well in powering my son’s mid-tier gaming setup. The balance between cost, efficiency, and reliable performance makes this a sensible choice for regular use or budget builds.

So far, my personal experience aligns with my expectations: a budget-friendly PSU that provides stable power delivery without unnecessary features that would drive up the cost. For anyone looking to build a standard PC without extravagant power needs, this PSU should be a strong consideration.

Overall Value and Verdict

A chart comparing price and features of different psus

In assessing the Thermaltake Smart 500W PSU, my takeaway skews positively, primarily due to the unit’s solid performance and value. Its 80 PLUS certification underscores a commitment to efficiency, translating into cost savings. The balance of power and practicality offers credence to its appeal, especially for builders on a budget. Yet, like any product, it comes with a few potential drawbacks that bear mention.

Here’s a quick rundown to summarize my thoughts:


  • Reliable performance fitting for mid-range builds.

  • 80 PLUS certified, ensuring energy efficiency.

  • 500W power output suitable for systems without heavy overclocking or high-end GPUs.

  • Quiet operation owing to the intelligent cooling fan.

  • Comprehensive protection features safeguarding against power irregularities.

  • A 5-year warranty provides a reassuring safety net.


  • Limited connectivity options with a preference for additional PCIe connectors.

  • Non-modular design may deter some users seeking a cleaner build aesthetic.

  • May fall short for more power-intensive applications.

The PSU’s stable power delivery stands out, handling my son’s and my computing needs without hiccups. I appreciate that even under full load, the unit remains stable and crash-free. This reliability is critical for peace of mind, knowing that there’s little risk of damaging other components. For systems similar to mine or for a mid-range gaming setup, the 500W rating is ample.

However, the non-modular design may not be everyone’s cup of tea. For those who value a minimalist approach to cable management, the plethora of wires could be a bit off-putting. I also harbored a wish for dual 8-pin PCIe connectors, which would have added flexibility for future upgrades. This limitation, albeit not a deal-breaker, is something to consider if your build requires more connectivity.

Looking at the price-to-performance ratio, this PSU hits a sweet spot. It’s a step above entry-level alternatives without stretching into the premium territory. For users like me, who seek functionality without frivolity, it’s an excellent match.

The overall verdict? The Thermaltake Smart 500W PSU stands as a robust foundation for most standard builds, offering reliable performance, efficiency, and quality protections at a price that won’t induce sticker shock. It’s a testament to Thermaltake’s commitment to delivering value-oriented power solutions. If your computing demands align with what this PSU brings to the table, it’s a choice that won’t disappoint.