Lian Li SP850 Gold SFX Power Supply Review

Practical testing …

If you buy the Lian Li SP850 because of the 12-pin PCIe 5.0 connector, but want to run a full-size ATX system with it, you should know that the cables are most likely not long enough. If necessary, you could help yourself with extension cables. For our practical testing, we use a PC with the following equipment.

Mainboard ASRock B550 Taichi Razer Edition
SSD Crucial P5 Plus 1TB M.2 PCIe 4.0 NVMe-1.4
CPU AMD Ryzen 5 5600X
RAM 2x 8GB DDR4-3733 CL14 Single Rank
im Dualchannel Modus
Graphics card NVidia GeForce RTX 2070 Super
Case Cooler Master C700P Black Edition
Cooler Arctic Liquid Freezer II 280 A-RGB
Operating system Windows 11

There were no problems during installation. Even the 24-pin connector on the motherboard could be inserted without major resistance. It fits snugly and the latch immediately jumped into the locking position without having to push it.

The PCIe connectors could be connected to the graphics card just as well. However, the cable’s individually sleeved cores do not leave a particularly tidy impression inside the PC.

The connectors of the fully modular cable system also fit perfectly on the power supply. However, all fully modular PC power supplies share the problem that the plugs in the second row are hardly accessible when installed. Normally, the required cables only have to be plugged in once and then only reconnected under certain circumstances during a major system reconstruction.

The voltages …

Before we look at the voltages in detail, we take a look at the voltage tolerances according to the ATX specification. These are +/-5% of the nominal value for the +5V and +12V lines, which results in the following limits. The power supply color codes and pin assignments are listed in our forum under PC power supply pin assignment.

Voltage Tolerance Minimum Maximum
+3.3V ±5% +3.14V +3.47V
-5V ±10% -4.5V -5.5V
+5V ±5% +4.75V +5.25V
-12V ±10% -10.8V -13.2V
+12V ±5% 11.4V 12.6V

Voltages under load …

For the stress test of the SP850, we run Furmark’s Torture Test to stress the RTX 2070 Super graphics card to its performance limit. Alongside this, we run the Prime 95 Small FFT test, which pushes the CPU to its highest possible power consumption. The graphics card is overclocked with MSI Afterburner, where the power limit is raised to its limit, and the CPU is overclocked via the motherboard using PBO. The wattmeter at the wall socket shows a power consumption of 420 watts under these conditions. That is 5 watts less than another manufacturer’s 750 watt power supply that is also 80 Plus Gold certified and that we used for comparison purposes. We can therefore attest the Lian Li SP850 a good efficiency at this power. Usually, the efficiency is also slightly better with 230V supply than with 110V, which is also available as mains voltage in some regions of the world. However, the difference is very small in this power supply, which is clearly distorted in the following diagram due to the scaling.

We determine the voltages of the 3.3V, 5V and 12V rails via software with the program HWiNFO. Even under the considerable power output, the SP850 doesn’t show any weakness and keeps the voltages exemplarily stable.

Voltage Minimum Maximum
3.3V 3.31V 3.36V
5V 4.99V 5.04V
12V 11.88V 12.09V

During the entire test phase, we did not experience any problems with the power supply of the Lian Li SP850. Freezes, black screens, blue screens or similar, which could be attributed to problems with the power supply, did not occur at any time.

Emissions …

In our test with 420 watts input power, which corresponds to about 380-390 watts output power, the 92mm fan inside the SP850 did not start at a room temperature of 25°C yet. According to the manufacturer, the Zero RPM mode (fan off) remains up to 40% load or 60°C, which was even exceeded in our test.

After some time, only a slight warming of the PSU case could be detected, which once again underlines the excellent efficiency of the PSU in the partial load range, where the 80 Plus Platinum specification is only missed by a few tenths of a percentage point by the SP850.

Less pleasing, however, is the very unpleasant, acrid smell that the power cord spreads. Unfortunately, this does not dissipate even after several weeks of airing. If you have another power cord at home, you should rather use this one. The connection cables for the supply of the PC components, on the other hand, are all practically odor-free. The power supply itself doesn’t emit any noticeable odors either. Coil whine (also called coil whine) did not occur under high or low load in our tests.

Lian Li SP850 Result and general impression …