Bang For Your Buck: Four 500 W Power Supplies Reviewed

SilverStone Strider SST-ST50F-230

The SilverStone Strider SST-ST50F-230 is the only power supply in this roundup without an 80 PLUS certification logo. Instead, the packaging says that the PSU can achieve an energy efficiency "of up to 80 percent." However, the Strider is very attractively priced at around $65—and the product's aesthetics match its price.

Of course, boring looks are usually irrelevant when it comes to power supplies. More decisive is the fact that this power supply is designed for 230 V operation-only (making it useless in North America; rather, this one is for our international audience). An 80 PLUS certification is not possible under these circumstances, as the tests mandate 115 V compatibility.

Despite the low price, SilverStone didn't skimp on cable management. All cables, even the ATX and CPU, are modular and round. The number of connections is satisfactory, too: two PCIe, six SATA, and six four-pin Molex connectors.

SilverStone Strider 500 W Evolution SST-ST50F-230
AC Input200-240V, 50-60 Hz
DC Output+3.3 V+5 V+12 V (#1)+12 V (#2)+12 V (#3)+12 V (#4)-12 V+5 Vsb
25 A30 A18 A18 An/an/a0.8 A2.5 A
Individual Output  32 An/an/a9.6 W12.5 W
Rail UtilizationSysSysCPU & VGA
Combined Output150 W384 W
Total Continuous Output500 W
Peak Outputn/a

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  • haplo602
    the yes/no graphs are funny .... how about a table ?

    anyway I did not notice voltage stability measurements and a "hot box" test.
  • SpadeM
    It might be just me but the ripple/noise test wasn't performed on these PSUs. Also, at what temperature did you guys test for the efficiency? I'm hoping u tested it over 30 degrees Celsius.
    Other then that, it's a pretty quick analysis. Wish you'd open them up to actually see what components they used in their primary and secondary circuits.
  • Other Comments
  • haplo602
    the yes/no graphs are funny .... how about a table ?

    anyway I did not notice voltage stability measurements and a "hot box" test.
  • sabot00
    Editor FTW!
  • SpadeM
    It might be just me but the ripple/noise test wasn't performed on these PSUs. Also, at what temperature did you guys test for the efficiency? I'm hoping u tested it over 30 degrees Celsius.
    Other then that, it's a pretty quick analysis. Wish you'd open them up to actually see what components they used in their primary and secondary circuits.
  • The Lady Slayer
    @SpadeM: there are other sites that dismantle power supplies, just google them

    I'm happy that yet another site thinks highly of the CM Silent Pro series; I'm using the M600W currently.
  • agnickolov
    For the last several years I've considered $50 the ceiling for a 500W PSU... To put it into perspective - this is the value choice. I did spend $80 on a 530W PSU 7 years ago, but that was then.
  • raclimja
    why no seasonic?

    according to most people that i know, seasonic is the very best brand that make quality psu for the money

    newegg has a Seasonic S12ii Bronze 520w for just $69.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817151094&cm_re=seasonic_s12ii_bronze-_-17-151-094-_-Product

    and according to reviews it is the very best power supply in its price range(it even beat the Corsair HX 620w)
    http://www.pcstats.com/articleview.cfm?articleid=2162&page=4
  • p1n3apqlexpr3ss
    Ummm... just me or 4 rails @ 18A for the FSP and 3 rails @ 25A for the enermax seem really really really heaps for a 500W psu...?
  • p1n3apqlexpr3ss
    Oh and how can you have a 115V 110% peak load test on the silverstone?? :p
    But yea very nice read, was expecting some more cheaper PSUs tbh though, the vantec ions seem to offer good price/performance, at least here in new zealand, dunno if you get them in america
  • raclimja
    P1n3apqlExpr3ssUmmm... just me or 4 rails @ 18A for the FSP and 3 rails @ 25A for the enermax seem really really really heaps for a 500W psu...?


    in my opinion, if i am buying a 500w psu

    my main concern will be efficiency

    since i wont mind doing some crazy overclocking or tri-sli or quad fire over a 500w psu

    also look at this very interesting result that i have found
    a Core i7 920 + GTX 260 @stock under PRIME 95+ Furmark has only a maximum power consumption of 371w
    http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cases/display/system-wattage_7.html#sect0

    and in real life usage i bet you wont even get close to that power consumption even when overclocked :)
  • jhanschu
    I always enjoy reading about PSU's as I feel they are really the core to your system. Poor power means flaky system, and allow your electrical components to last longer.

    With that aside, in my opinion finding a value PSU is about weighing price and quality. Although the Pro87+ was a monster when it came to efficiency, it was still said to be available for around $140. First, that's a bit much for a budget/midrange PSU and secondly, I couldn't find that particular PSU anywhere online. I found the 600W variant on newegg for around the same price...but it's not the same PSU.

    Pretty much the same goes for the other PSU's. I couldn't find them at any reputable online dealers (newegg, tigerdirect, zipzoomfly, etc.). And I do realize that it takes much time to do a review like this, but it seems like some of the more popular brands have been left out. Even if they don't have an 80plus "Gold" PSU at or around the 500W level. At least then you'd have a baseline for a so called normal efficiency power supply.

    I did a lot of research when I purchased mine a couple of years ago when I last built a ground up system. I settled on a corsair VX550 and have been thoroughly impressed with how it's handled my moderate gaming system. Now this is a personal preference, but I've been so pleased with it, I doubt if I will go to another PSU label. But anyway, that's my $0.02.
  • jhanschu
    jhanschuPoor power means flaky system, and allow your electrical components to last longer.


    you probably figured out what I was trying to say...but meant a good PSU allows components to last longer. Sorry bout that.
  • doron
    I'm with SpadeM - What about a noise test?

    Very interesting article, thanks
  • falchard
    I think the thing everyone looks for in PSUs above everything else is build quality. If the PSU fails, it could take everything else with it.
  • JonnyDough
    raclimjawhy no seasonic?according to most people that i know, seasonic is the very best brand that make quality psu for the moneynewegg has a Seasonic S12ii Bronze 520w for just $69.99http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] -_-Productand according to reviews it is the very best power supply in its price range(it even beat the Corsair HX 620w)http://www.pcstats.com/articleview [...] 162&page=4


    The review you posted is from 2007...that power supply unit is old tech. Get with the times.
  • marraco
    Thanks for testing in 230V
  • jimishtar
    no corsair, no pcpower&cooling.... hmmmm
  • zelog
    Silverstone Strider All cables... are modular...

    That's not what the picture says :)
  • digiex
    be pa
    haplo602the yes/no graphs are funny .... how about a table ?anyway I did not notice voltage stability measurements and a "hot box" test.


    Be patient guys, this is the first time, right?
  • dannyboy3210
    Typo in your Hold Up Time graph, you have:
    SilverStone Strider SST-ST50F-230 (115v) N/A
    followed by
    SilverStone Strider SST-ST50F-230 (115v) 18.0
    Other than that, this looks very useful.
  • baracubra
    Its great that Tom's is finally reviewing PSU, and I hope that you guys do an enthusiast 800W-1000W review soon becuase thats what us enthusiasts really need. Btw Patrick, how would you comment that a rig running an i7 & GTX 280 draws about 380W under full load? Do we really need such big PSUs?