Review: be quiet! Darkpower Pro 10 550W PSU


The overall look of be quiet!'s Dark Power Pro 10 power supply is subtle and understated.  The fan grille provides a splash of contrasting silver color and the wires look almost as though they're strung like a tennis racket.  The rear vent features a large hexagonal grille and a standard hole pattern.  The 24-pin motherboard power cable and the 8-pin CPU cables are hard-wired, a design choice which we have always agreed with.  Making those cables modular does nothing but add cost and power consumption since you'll certainly be using those cables.



Obviously, keeping with it's namesake, be quiet!'s products are designed to be acoustically-friendly (yes, that means quiet).  So what they've done is equipped the Dark Power Pro 10 with one of their Silent Wings 2 fans.  We got a good look at these fans with their fans we reviewed earlier, and we loved them for being absolutely silent (yes again, seems pretty obvious).  The 135mm fan will move plenty of air across the transformers and regulator PCB and out the rear of your case through the large honeycomb vents.  The metal fan grille gives a subtle yet attractively-minimalist appearance and only does what it needs to keep your curious fingers out of harm's way.



To limit vibration, be quiet! has covered the rear mounting face with a rubber sleeve so that the case suface that the power suply attaches to, and also rests on, won't transmit much vibration, if any, to the case (which could create rattles / noise that's especially annoying).  This is a nice touch and not something you'll find on many other power supplies.



As the label shows, be quiet!'s Dark Power Pro 10 series achieves it's 80 Plus Gold certification by utilizing a whopping four (4) 12V rails, two of which transmit 20A and the other two 25A.  But, if you're pushing for that high performance overclock, the "Overclocking Key" can be toggled so that the 540W of 12V power can be sent through a single rail.  This is one of the "unique" defining features of the circuitry, and inside we find the circuit and regulators are all made of high quality components found in other high-end power supplies, which also contributes to the 80 Plus efficiency.





Our "test bench" for power supply installation is the venerable behemoth, the Coolermaster Cosmos II Ultra Tower.  If we can run the cables cleanly in this case, you'll be set for essentially any other case money can buy today.  We were pleased to see that be quiet! didn't skimp on the cable lengths. We were able to route the 8-pin CPU cable and 24-pin motherboard power cables behind the motherboard tray and to their respective sockets with some length to spare to tidy things up on the back side.


be quiet! has also included a healthy bundle of low-profile "fancy velcro" to use as cable ties, and these really are a treat (as much of a treat as velcro can be).  They look great and do their job superbly, making a quick, clean, and easy build a reality.  Other little goodies like large thumb screws for mounting are also thrown in as a nice bonus.


The rest was pretty standard from what we've come to expect from a modular power supply.  When mounted face-down, the 24-pin and 8-pin CPU cables are nearest to the motherboard tray side for clean routing behind the motherboard tray.  The rest of the plugs can be chosen to fit your needs which ensures you have minimal cable clutter, easy-peasy.  Again, we found that all of the cables had ample length, even in the monstrosity known as the Cosmos II.


The included OCK switch mounts conveniently in the rear expansion slots, and again we can see we have plenty of length available to route the cable cleanly.

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