SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W Power Supply Review
By Gabriel Torres on January 8, 2013


Introduction

Hardware Secrets Bronze Award

SilverStone released a series of power supplies with the 80 Plus Gold certification and a fully modular cabling system, with 550 W, 650 W, and 1,000 W versions, dubbed the Strider Gold. Let’s see if the 650 W model, also known as SST-ST65F-G, deserves our recommendation.

This power supply is manufactured by Enhance.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 1: SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W power supply

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 2: SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W power supply

The SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W is only 5.5” (140 mm) deep. It uses a 120 mm sleeve-bearing fan on its bottom (ADDA AD1212MS-A71GL).

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 3: Fan

The modular cabling system from this power supply has eight connectors: one for the main motherboard power connector, one for ATX12V/EPS12V connectors, two for video card connectors, and four for peripheral and SATA connectors. This power supply comes with the following cables:

The main motherboard cable, the ATX12V/EPS12V cable, and the video card cables use thicker, 16 AWG wires, which is excellent. The SATA and peripheral cables use 18 AWG wires, which is the minimum recommended gauge.

The number of connectors is excellent for a 650 W power supply, allowing you to install up to two high-end video cards that require two auxiliary power connectors each.

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Figure 4: Cables

Let’s now take an in-depth look inside this power supply.

A Look Inside the SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W

We decided to disassemble this power supply to see what it looks like inside, how it is designed, and what components are used. Please read our “Anatomy of Switching Power Supplies” tutorial to understand how a power supply works and to compare this power supply to others.

On this page we will have an overall look, and then in the following pages we will discuss in detail the quality and ratings of the components used.

 

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 5: Top view

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 6: Front quarter view

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 7: Rear quarter view

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 8: The printed circuit board

Transient Filtering Stage

As we have mentioned in other articles and reviews, the first place we look when opening a power supply for a hint about its quality, is its filtering stage. The recommended components for this stage are two ferrite coils, two ceramic capacitors (Y capacitors, usually blue), one metalized polyester capacitor (X capacitor), and one MOV (Metal-Oxide Varistor). Very low-end power supplies use fewer components, usually removing the MOV and the first coil.

In the transient filtering stage, this power supply is flawless.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 9: Transient filtering stage (part 1)

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 10: Transient filtering stage (part 2)

On the next page, we will have a more detailed discussion about the components used in the SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W.

Primary Analysis

On this page, we will take an in-depth look at the primary stage of the SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W. For a better understanding, please read our “Anatomy of Switching Power Supplies” tutorial.

This power supply uses one GBU15L06 rectifying bridge, which is attached to the same heatsink as the active PFC and switching transistors. This bridge supports up to 15 A at 115° C. In theory, you would be able to pull up to 1,725 W from a 115 V power grid. Assuming 80% efficiency, the bridge would allow this unit to deliver up to 1,380 W without burning itself out (or 1,553 W at 90% efficiency). Of course, we are only talking about this particular component. The real limit will depend on all the components combined in this power supply.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 11: Rectifying bridge

The active PFC circuit uses two IPP50R140CP MOSFETs, each one supporting up to 23 A at 25° C or 15 A at 100° C in continuous mode (note the difference temperature makes), or 56 A at 25° C in pulse mode. These transistors present a 140 mΩ maximum resistance when turned on, a characteristic called RDS(on). The lower the number the better, meaning that the transistor will waste less power, and the power supply will have a higher efficiency.

The active PFC circuit is controlled by a CM6502 integrated circuit.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 12: Active PFC controller

The output of the active PFC circuit is filtered by a 470 μF x 420 V Japanese electrolytic capacitor, from Matsushita (Panasonic), labeled at 105° C.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 13: Capacitor

In the switching section, two STP20NM50FD MOSFETs are employed using a resonant configuration. Each transistor supports up to 20 A at 25° C or 14 A at 100° C in continuous mode or up to 80 A at 25° C in pulse mode, with a maximum RDS(on) of 250 mΩ.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 14: The switching transistors, the active PFC diode, and the active PFC transistors

The switching transistors are controlled by a CM6901 resonant controller, which is located on the solder side of the printed circuit board.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 15: Resonant controller

Let’s now take a look at the secondary of this power supply.

Secondary Analysis

As one would expect in a high-efficiency power supply, the SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W uses a synchronous design, where the Schottky rectifiers are replaced with MOSFETs. Also, the reviewed product uses a DC-DC design in its secondary. This means that the power supply is basically a +12 V unit, with the +5 V and +3.3 V outputs produced by two smaller power supplies connected to the main +12 V rail. Both designs are used to increase efficiency.

The +12 V output uses four IPP041N04N MOSFETs, each one supporting up to 80 A at 100° C in continuous mode, or up to 400 A at 25° C in pulse mode, with a maximum RDS(on) of 4.1 mΩ.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 16: The +12 V transistors

As explained, the +5 V and +3.3 V outputs are produced by two DC-DC converters, each one located on an individual daughterboard soldered to the main printed circuit board. Each converter uses an APW7073 integrated circuit, which drives one CSD86350Q5D integrated circuit, which has two MOSFETS inside, each one supporting up to 40 A at 25° C in continuous mode and up to 120 A at 25° C in pulse mode, with a maximum RDS(on) of 5 mΩ.

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Figure 17: One of the DC-DC converters

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 18: One of the DC-DC converters

The outputs of the power supply are monitored by a PS223 integrated circuit, which supports over voltage (OVP), under voltage (UVP), and over current (OCP) protections. There are four OCP channels, one for +3.3 V, one for +5 V, and two for +12 V. The manufacturer, however, decided to use only one of the +12 V channels available, resulting in this unit having a single +12 V rail.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 19: Monitoring circuit

This power supply uses a mix of solid and electrolytic capacitors in its secondary. The electrolytic capacitors are also Japanese, from Chemi-Con and Rubycon, and labeled at 105° C, as usual.

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Figure 20: Capacitors

The +5VSB Power Supply

The +5VSB (a.k.a. standby) power supply is independent of the main power supply, since it is on continuously.

The +5VSB power supply uses an STR-A6062H6 integrated circuit, which incorporates the PWM controller and the switching transistor into a single chip.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 21: The +5VSB integrated circuit with an integrated switching transistor

The rectification of the +5VSB output is performed by an SBL10SL60FCTH Schottky rectifier, which supports up to 10 A (5 A per internal diode at 90° C, 0.52 V maximum voltage drop).

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 22: The +5VSB rectifier

Power Distribution

In Figure 23, you can see the power supply label containing all the power specs.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 23: Power supply label

As you can see, this unit has a single +12 V rail configuration.

Let’s find out how much power this unit can deliver.

Load Tests

We conducted several tests with this power supply, as described in the article, “Hardware Secrets Power Supply Test Methodology.”

First, we tested this power supply with five different load patterns, trying to pull around 20%, 40%, 60%, 80%, and 100% of its labeled maximum capacity (actual percentage used listed under “% Max Load”), watching the behavior of the reviewed unit under each load. In the table below, we list the load patterns we used and the results for each load.

If you add all the powers listed for each test, you may find a different value than what is posted under “Total” below. Since each output can have a slight variation (e.g., the +5 V output working at 5.10 V), the actual total amount of power being delivered is slightly different than the calculated value. In the “Total” row, we are using the real amount of power being delivered, as measured by our load tester.

The +12VA and +12VB inputs listed below are the two +12 V independent inputs from our load tester. During this test, the +12VA and +12VB inputs were connected to the power supply’s single +12 V rail. (The +12VB input was connected to the power supply EPS12V connector.)

Input

Test 1

Test 2

Test 3

Test 4

Test 5

+12VA

5 A (60 W)

10 A (120 W)

14.5 A (174 W)

19 A (228 W)

23.5 A (282 W)

+12VB

5 A (60 W)

10 A (120 W)

14 A (168 W)

19 A (228 W)

23.5 A (282 W)

+5 V

1 A (5 W)

2 A (10 W)

4 A (20 W)

6 A (30 W)

8 A (40 W)

+3.3 V

1 A (3.3 W)

2 A (6.6 W)

4 A (13.2 W)

6 A (19.8 W)

8 A (26.4 W)

+5VSB

1 A (5 W)

1.5 A (7.5 W)

2 A (10 W)

2.5 A (12.5 W)

3 A (15 W)

-12 V

0.5 A (6 W)

0.5 A (6 W)

0.5 A (6 W)

0.5 A (6 W)

0.5 A (6 W)

Total

139.5 W

270.3 W

390.4 W

521.4 W

648.8 W

% Max Load

21.5%

41.6%

60.1%

80.2%

99.8%

Room Temp.

45.3° C

44.3° C

44.8° C

46.4° C

46.5° C

PSU Temp.

47.1° C

46.0° C

46.5° C

47.6° C

47.3° C

Voltage Regulation

Pass

Pass

Pass

Pass

Pass

Ripple and Noise

Pass

Pass

Pass

Pass

Pass

AC Power

156.1 W

299.1 W

436.3 W

598.2 W

759.0 W

Efficiency

89.4%

90.4%

89.5%

87.2%

85.5%

AC Voltage

117.4 V

115.8 V

114.6 V

113.0 V

111.4 V

Power Factor

0.957

0.961

0.973

0.981

0.985

Final Result

Pass

Pass

Pass

Pass

Pass

The 80 Plus Gold certification promises efficiency of at least 87% under light (i.e., 20%) load, 90% under typical (i.e., 50%) load, and 87% under full (i.e., 100%) load. While the SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W was able to match these numbers at light and typical loads (with very high efficiency at light load, by the way), at full load efficiency was of 85.5 percent. As we always explain, the tests for the 80 Plus certification are conducted at 23° C, we test power supplies between 45° C and 50° C, and efficiency drops as temperature increases. Also, during our full-load tests, the AC voltage was at 111 V, which also explains the lower efficiency.

Let’s discuss voltage regulation on the next page.

Voltage Regulation Tests

The ATX12V specification states that positive voltages must be within 5% of their nominal values, and negative voltages must be within 10% of their nominal values. We consider a power supply as “flawless” if it shows voltages within 3% of its nominal values. In the table below, you can see the power supply voltages during our tests and, in the following table, the deviation, in percentage, of their nominal values.

The SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W presented outstanding voltage regulation, as you can see below, except for the -12 V output during tests one and two (this output was still inside the allowed range, though).

Input

Test 1

Test 2

Test 3

Test 4

Test 5

+12VA

+12.08 V

+12.04 V

+12.00 V

+11.96 V

+11.92 V

+12VB

+12.08 V

+12.02 V

+11.99 V

+11.95 V

+11.90 V

+5 V

+4.97 V

+4.95 V

+4.93 V

+4.91 V

+4.88 V

+3.3 V

 +3.35 V

+3.34 V

+3.31 V

+3.28 V

+3.26 V

+5VSB

+5.03 V

+5.00 V

+4.94 V

+4.93 V

+4.89 V

-12 V

-10.95 V

-11.14 V

-11.38 V

-11.76 V

-12.05 V


Input

Test 1

Test 2

Test 3

Test 4

Test 5

+12VA

0.67%

0.33%

 0.00%

-0.33%

-0.67%

+12VB

0.67%

0.17%

-0.08%

-0.42%

-0.83%

+5 V

-0.60%

-1.00%

-1.40%

-1.80%

-2.40%

+3.3 V

1.52%

1.21%

0.30%

-0.61%

-1.21%

+5VSB

0.60%

0.00%

-1.20%

-1.40%

-2.20%

-12 V

9.59%

7.72%

5.45%

2.04%

-0.41%

Let’s discuss the ripple and noise levels on the next page.

Ripple and Noise Tests

Voltages at the power supply outputs must be as “clean” as possible, with no noise or oscillation (also known as “ripple”). The maximum ripple and noise levels allowed are 120 mV for +12 V and -12 V outputs, and 50 mV for +5 V, +3.3 V and +5VSB outputs. All values are peak-to-peak figures. We consider a power supply as being top-notch if it can produce half or less of the maximum allowed ripple and noise levels.

The SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W provided ripple and noise levels within the allowed range, however, noise levels at the +3.3 V output were almost touching the maximum allowed during tests four and five.

Input

Test 1

Test 2

Test 3

Test 4

Test 5

+12VA

37.4 mV

30.0 mV

30.2 mV

28.4 mV

30.4 mV

+12VB

35.2 mV

30.4 mV

29.2 mV

29.2 mV

29.4 mV

+5 V

18.8 mV

23.0 mV

26.4 mV

32.8 mV

38.4 mV

+3.3 V

17.4 mV

23.2 mV

28.2 mV

48.8 mV

46.4 mV

+5VSB

8.6 mV

13.4 mV

17.4 mV

22.4 mV

29.4 mV

-12 V

64.4 mV

53.4 mV

58.6 mV

76.2 mV

92.4 mV

Below you can see the waveforms of the outputs during test five.

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 24: +12VA input from load tester during test five at 648.8 W (30.4 mV)

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 25: +12VB input from load tester during test five at 648.8 W (29.4 mV)

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 26: +5V rail during test five at 648.8 W (38.4 mV)

SilverStone Strider Gold 650w
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Figure 27: +3.3 V rail during test five at 648.8 W (46.4 mV)

Let’s see if we can pull more than 650 W from this unit.

Overload Tests

Below you can see the maximum we could pull from this power supply. The objective of this test is to see if the power supply has its protection circuits working properly. This unit passed this test, since it shut down when we tried to pull more than what is listed below. During this test, noise and ripple levels were above the maximum allowed at the +3.3 V output, at 59.8 mV, and touching the limit at the +5 V output, at +47.8 mV. On the other hand, levels at the +12 V output were still very low at 33 mV. Voltages were still within 3% of their nominal values.

Input

Overload Test

+12VA

29 A (348 W)

+12VB

29 A (348 W)

+5 V

10 A (50 W)

+3.3 V

10 A (33 W)

+5VSB

3 A (15 W)

-12 V

0.5 A (6 W)

Total

789.3 W

% Max Load

121.4%

Room Temp.

43.6° C

PSU Temp.

45.9° C

AC Power

958 W

Efficiency

82.4%

AC Voltage

108.9 V

Power Factor

0.988

Main Specifications

The main specifications for the SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W power supply include:

Conclusions

The SilverStone Strider Gold 650 W is not a bad power supply, with great voltage regulation and very good efficiency if you pull up to 80% of its labeled wattage. The fully modular cabling system is also a plus.

On the negative side, we saw 85.5% efficiency when pulling 650 W from this unit at real-world temperatures and noise and ripple levels that were too high at the +3.3 V output, although still below the maximum allowed.

These little issues result in this unit being a step below its main competitors, in particular the Seasonic X-Series KM3 650 W, which is a flawless unit that provides better performance, also has a fully modular cabling system, and is USD 10 cheaper, making it a far better option.

Originally at http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/SilverStone-Strider-Gold-650-W-Power-Supply-Review/1704


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