SilverStone Strider Platinum ST55F-PT 550W Power Supply Review

Introduction & Packaging


Silverstone is one of the biggest PC component manufacturers in the world. Every year they launch a colossal amount of products that span a huge range of hardware and usage scenarios. They’ve got an ever-growing range of connectors, cables, fans, filters, I/O devices, chassis, coolers and more. Of course, the one that’s most important to us today is that they also make some of the industries best PSU hardware. Their new Strider Platinum ST55F-PT 550W really caught our interest, as not only does it pack 550W of power, it also has 80 Plus Platinum efficiency, fully module cables, high-quality components, and a hybrid/passive cooling feature, but it’s also incredibly compact for a PSU with these hardware specifications, making it a promising solution for compact system builds.

“As desktop computers continue to advance toward ever more efficient and smaller designs, SilverStone is helping to drive the efficiency movement by releasing the Strider Platinum series of power supplies. Created to be the smallest fully modular ATX power supplies with 80 PLUS Platinum efficiency, they are also incredibly quiet with the ability to run in fanless mode. If the loading condition is below 20%, the fan in the power supply can remain off for silent operation during idle or low powered computing activities. Other great features inherited from previous Strider series include ±3% regulation, powerful single +12V rail, 24/7 continuous power output, and multiple PCI-E cables. For those looking to build highly efficient systems in small footprints, the Strider Platinum is definitely the best choice.”

With a depth of just 140mm, this PSU should be extremely compatible with a very large selection of chassis products, including many of the very ergonomic chassis which Silverstone produce. With high-quality components that add excellent efficiency, voltage regulation and 24/7 operation, we have high expectation of what this PSU can do.

  • Compact design with a depth of 140mm for easy integration
  • High efficiency with 80 PLUS Platinum certification
  • 100% modular cables
  • 24/7 continuous power output with 40℃ operating temperature
  • Class-leading single +12V rail
  • Strict ±3% voltage regulation and low ripple & noise
  • Ultra silent 120mm fan with intelligent semi-fanless operation

All the usual security features are here, as well as a good range of connectors, a good quality fan and more. So let’s jump in and take a closer look at what it has to offer.

The packaging is nicely designed, with all the main hardware specifications detailed on the box, as well as the quote “world’s smallest 80 Plus Platinum full-modular ATX power supplies.”

Around the back, more technical performance data that most people are likely to ever read, but it’s nice that Silverstone are catering to those who understand it all.

In the box, you’ll find the mains power cable, some velcro cable ties, some plastic cable ties, the mounting screws, as well as an in-depth user manual.

Antec Strictly Power VPF550 Power Supply Review

Introduction & Packaging


Antec produce some of the most popular PSUs on the market, their PGS series has been a popular choice for many years now and their more recent EDGE series are winning people over too. Of course, not everyone has the budget, or the technical need for a high-end gaming PSU and that’s where the VPS550 comes in. This is a low to midrange power supply, offering 80 Plus Bronze efficiency, 550W of power, non-modular cables and a very affordable £40 price tag. Sure it’s not that exciting, but a budget-friendly gaming system or office computer will no doubt be an ideal target for Antec’s latest.

The packaging is nicely designed, showing all the main specifications right on the front, including the support for Haswell, active PFC and continuous power.

The same details are on the back of the box, as well as the multi-language breakdown.

In the box, you’ll find some warranty information, four mounting screws and the AC power cable.

XFX XTR 550 Fully Modular Power Supply Review

Introduction


One of the latest XFX power supplies is on our test bench today, bringing 550W of power as well as 80 Plus Gold efficiency to your system, making it a solid contender for most mid-to-high end gaming PC’s. Many people think they need 1000W plus from their PSU, but that simply isn’t the case, with most high-end single GPU systems rarely drawing more than 400-500W from the wall. Being a Seasonic manufactured unit, I’m expecting great things from the XFX XTR Series 550W PSU.

 “Designed for serious gamers and DIY professionals, the XFX XTR Series 550W Full Modular 80 Plus Gold power supply delivers the clean and stable power required for demanding gaming rigs and workstations. A single strong 12V rail flexibly routes the maximum available power to the parts, enabling you to maximize power usage and making setup easy. It’s also been awarded the 80Plus Gold certification for its high power efficiency, and is also designed for NVIDIA SLI and AMD Crossfire multi-GPU systems, making it a perfect solution for hardcore gamers. Its modular design reduces cable clutter. And the large fan delivers silent cooling, so your computer and PSU can operate at peak performance.”

Equipped with a powerful single +12V rail configuration, modular cables, CrossFire/SLI compatibility, Haswell support and much more, this is certainly a capable unit for a wide range of systems. Of course, you’ll also find it comes equipped with all the latest safety features, as well as high-quality Japanese capacitors, which should allow for clean and stable power delivery.

As with many Seasonic manufactured units, this PSU also comes equipped with a Hybrid Fan, allowing you to switch between always on cooling and a semi-passive mode, perfect for those who desire maximum performance or silent operation.

  • EasyRail Plus Technology allowing plenty of wattage headroom to handle your devices
  • Hybrid Fan Control allowing the power supply to operate silenty until it reaches 20% load or 25C
  • Ultra Quiet Fan Design
  • Ultra Voltage Regulation Design
  • Haswell Ready
  • AMD Radeon CrossFire Ready
  • NVIDIA GeForce SLI Ready
  • Multiple PCI-E 6-Pin and 6+2Pin connectors
  • True Wattage guarantee
  • 80 Plus Gold certifying 90% power efficiency
  • Extreme heat tested capacitors

The packaging is very nicely designed, with some stylish images on the box as well as a rundown of the major features, such as Haswell Ready, Japanese Caps, SLI/CrossFire and 80 Plus Gold efficiency.

Another important feature on the back, the True Wattage Guarantee, always a reassuring thing to see and something we’ll certainly hope to see in our test results.

In the box, you’ll find a durable power cable, some mounting screws and a user manual, nothing too fancy, but it’s everything you’re going to need.

be quiet! Dark Power Pro 11 550W Power Supply Review

Introduction & Packaging


It’s no secret that be quiet! make some of the best PSUs money can buy, we’ve seen time after time that they can deliver great looking and performing products. A few months ago, we took a look at one of their latest and greatest units, the Dark Power Pro 11 1200W PSU and it was certainly impressive, offering excellent power delivery, whisper quiet performance and gorgeous aesthetics, but what if you don’t need huge amounts of power for your system, but you still want a very high-quality unit? That’s where the new Dark Power Pro 11 low-wattage models come into play.

“The Dark Power Pro 11 is the most advanced high-end power supply from be quiet!. Massive power, Overclocking Key, which can switch between quad and single-rail operation, an almost inaudible performance due to a be quiet! SilentWings 3 fan and – for us – the highest efficiency certification in the form of 80PLUS Platinum are some of the features of the new Dark Power Pro-models.” – be quiet!

At our disposal today, we have the Dark Power Pro 11 550w, offering more than enough power for a single-GPU system, workstation, office system or HTPC. Don’t think lower wattage means less features though, as you’ll still find 80 Plus Platinum efficiency, semi-modular cables and premium grade build-quality throughout.

Packaging and accessories

The box is nicely designed and features the typical black design we see on all be quiet! products. What is interesting is seeing the “high-end” branded together with 550W, as lower wattage units are rarely high-end.

Around the back, a quick run-down of all the included cables and features, but we will, of course, take a much closer look at these in a moment.

In the box, you’ll find the AC power cable, user manual, OC key, fan cables and a collection of cable ties. The OC key is a nice touch, as it can be mounted in a space PCI-e expansion slot, giving you a physical switch for toggling between single and multiple rails on the PSU; not everyone will need such a thing, but it’s nice to have. The other welcome addition is the fan extension cables, as the PSU can have fans connected directly to it.