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SilverStone Strider SST-ST1200 (1200W)

SilverStone is represented with three models in this review. Will this give it more chances against the opponents in today’s comparison?

The 1200W Strider comes first. The company’s website classifies it as “Silent” and I will check this claim out shortly.

Exterior Design

The distinguishing feature of the Strider’s exterior is the nonstandard mains socket that is rated for high load currents. It is only necessary for regions with 110V mains because the current is twice lower at the same wattage in 220V mains.

The Strider SST-ST1200 looks suspiciously similar to the above-discussed CoolerMaster Real Power Pro RS-C50-EMBA-D2.

There is one dramatic difference, though. SilverStone engineers decided to make all cables detachable without exception. At first glance, it may seem unclear who might ever need a power supply unit without a mainboard cable, for instance. However, everything becomes clear once you go the official web-site where you can purchase a set of short cables (only 35 cm long) for those who would like to put together a very powerful system inside a compact case.

The PSU has 11 Molex Mini-Fit Jr. connectors that differ in size and the position of the key to prevent wrong connection.

The PSU is equipped with the following connectors:

  • One connector for a mainboard power cable
  • Two connectors for CPU power cables
  • Four connectors for graphics card cables
  • Four connectors for peripheral power cables

Included with the PSU are:

  • Mainboard cable with a 24-pin connector (54cm)
  • CPU cable with a 4+4-pin connector (74cm)
  • CPU cable with an 8-pin connector (74cm)
  • Two graphics card cables with one 6+2-pin and one 6-pin connector on each (55+15cm)
  • Two graphics card cables with one 6-pin connector on each (55cm)
  • Two cables with three SATA power plugs on each (50+24+24cm)
  • Two cables with three Molex connectors and one floppy-drive plug on each (50+25+25+15cm)

Users of system cases in which the PSU is located at the bottom are going to appreciate the long length of the CPU cables. The connectors on the peripheral power cables are placed at a big distance from each other. Still, I wish again there were three SATA cables in the kit.

Interior Design

The interior design is familiar to me. The PSU is manufactured by Enhance and is similar to the above-discussed CoolerMaster in its circuit design. No wonder they resemble each other externally. The Strider uses a dual-transformer design with dedicated voltage regulation based on magnetic amplifiers.

Teapo capacitors are installed at the PSU’s output.

Specifications

Having a total output power of 1200W, the PSU can deliver 1125W via the +12V rail split into six virtual output lines. Take note that the lines differ in load capacity and the sticker next to the PSU connectors shows what line goes there. Oddly enough, only three lines, with a combined current of 60A (20A each), are allotted to graphics cards. Thus, you can only provide 720W of power to your graphics cards unless you use adapters. It is PCI Express power lines that usually have the highest load capacity in other PSUs.

UPS Compatibility

Together with my APC SmartUPS SC 620 this power supply worked at loads up to 380W and 310W when powered by the mains and batteries, respectively. They switched to the batteries normally and the UPS was stable. Thus, this power supply can work with non-sinusoidal input voltage if the UPS has a sufficient reserve of wattage.

Output Voltage Stability

The +12V rail yields an ideally stable voltage that deflects no more than 2% from the nominal value at any load. The +5V voltage goes beyond the permissible 5% deflection at high loads on the respective rail, but the +5V rail does not have to work under such loads in today’s computers. You can see this in our diagram where the three reference configurations all fit into the zone where none of the basic voltages deflects more than 3% from the ideal level.

Output Voltage Ripple

There are short spikes of voltage on the +5V and +12V rails at full load, but the voltage ripple is overall within the permissible limits.

Noisiness

The PSU is cooled by a 135x135x25mm fan from Young Lin Tech Co.

The fan is rotating at a constant speed of 950rpm until a load of 750W, making the PSU rather quiet. When the load grows higher, the speed is increased, reaching a maximum of over 1700rpm. The fan becomes very loud but you can hardly load a 1200W power supply so much in practice.

Thus, although the Strider SST-ST1200 is just a little quieter than average, it is much better than the Cooler Master Real Power Pro in this respect.

Efficiency and Power Factor

The Strider does not set any records in this test. It is 88% efficient at the maximum and 80% efficient at full load. This is just a good result.

Standby Source

Although the manufacturer rates the standby source at up to 6A, the latter can only deliver 5A. The voltage plummets suddenly when the current is higher than 5A. This may be a problem of the specific sample of the PSU because the standby source of the similar unit from CoolerMaster coped with 6A load.  

Summary

Although the Strider SST-ST1200 seems to be based on the same platform from Enhance as the Cooler Master Real Power Pro RS-C50-EMBA-D2 discussed earlier in this review, SilverStone’s product is obviously better in its consumer properties. It is quieter in the first place. Besides, the Strider comes with detachable cables, which is handy because a 1200W power supply has a very thick and heavy bunch of cables that is quite inconvenient even in a roomy system case.

I did not spot any serious defect in the SST-ST1200. As for minor drawbacks, it has high voltage ripple at full load (by the way, the Real Power Pro had a completely different shape of that ripple, which is one more small difference between the electronics of these two models that you can’t see with an unaided eye) and its standby source cannot deliver the promised 6A to the load.

 
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