Antec Sonata III

Stylish ATX Enclosure.
Author: Jouni 'Jipa' Vasama
Published: 14.08.2007
Manufacturer: Antec
Product Group: System enclosure
In English In English
Suomeksi Suomeksi

Power Supply


Earthwatts EA-500

The power supplies in the first Sonatas became known of being able to burst into flames when the user least suspected, thus casting a nasty shadow over all the Antec-PSUs. After that, however, Antec has proved they can make good performance and quiet PSUs (NeoHE anyone?). The PSU in the Sonata 3 is one of the latest models of the Antec's PSU-family, Earthwatts EA-500. It's a 500 W model with a specified efficiency of over 80%. The PSU has 20/24-pin ATX, 8-pin EPS, 4-pin 12 V, two PCI-E, four S-ATA, 6 molex connectors and already a rather useless floppy connector. The PSU is cooled with a single 80 mm fan that sucks air through the power supply and not from the side as usually.

The 24-pin ATX-cable is sleeved for enhanced outlooks, but the rest of the cables have no sleeving. The connectors are normal black and have no quick-release mechanism.


We did it so you don't have to!

The internals of the EA-500 are nothing special. The heatsinks are pretty small, but then again the efficiency is high and so the heat output stays reasonable all the time. In the cover there is a tiny plastic air-guide that forces the air to go through the heatsinks and not just over them.




The first problem during the installation became obvious right at the beginning when I tried to mount a HDD to the HDD-sledge. All the HDD-screws that came with the Sonata 3 are too short! In the image you can see a Sonata-screw on the right and a right-sized screw on the left. Luckily there were right lenght screws in the P180 so the problem was easily solved. If one doesn't happen to have a P180 around the wrong sized screws would be a serious problem. I hope this is only an early mistake by Antec and the retail-cases come with the right screws.



The second problem, also a HDD-related one, is the S-ATA power connectors. The pass-through connectors are excellent as the HDDs are sideways, but the last connector of each cable is a normal one where the connector and the wires is a long combination. This lenght is a problem as the cable hits the side panel of the case. Also the cables of the PSU that have the S-ATA connectors both have only two connectors, so either one has to use them both and solve the wire mess or just bend the cables very sharply after the connector.

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