Silverstone Zeus 560w ST56ZF ATX PSU
Published: 7th June 2006 | Source: Silverstone | Price: |Load Testing
In order for the results from all current and future PSU reviews to remain fair and comparable, Overclock3D uses a custom built Power Supply load stress tester.
The tester is capable of placing loads on the following rails:
+3.3v - 20a Load
+5.0v - 20a Load
+12v1 - 10a Load
+12v2 - 10a Load
+12v3 - 10a Load
+12v4 - 10a Load
(or 20/40a on a single +12v rail)
The results are collected from a Mastech MAS-345 Multimeter which logs its readings via RS232 to a PC.
What I did find surprising was the similarity between the results of this unit, and the previously reviewed ST56F. I was expecting the Strider series PSU to not fair quite as well as the Zeus, but this is just testament to the high quality components that Silverstone use across their entire PSU range.
Another new addition to the Overclock3D PSU testing procedures is testing the efficiency of the power supply. These results will be helpful for people looking to save money on their electricity bills (or the environment), and will also allow us to see how close manufacturers efficiency ratings are to the truth.
The tests are performed by measuring the wattage consumed by the power supply at the mains against the power (in watts) consumed by the OC3D power supply stress tester.
The results may not be as accurate as those produced by professional testing equipment, but it will certainly come in handy when comparing several power supplies against each other.
Therefore the efficiency of this power supply can be found by a simple equation: (406 / 472) * 100, which works out to be 86%
Higher loads may reduce the efficiency results of this power supply, but at a load of around 70%, an efficiency rating of 86% is simply excellent for any type of power supply, especially that of one which is able to maintain such stable voltages under load.
Quite often, the cooling methods employed by some manufacturers are inadequate, and result in heat from the power supply finding its way back into your case.
The OC3D Temperature Tester involves placing the power supply into a standard ATX case, and measuring temperatures at various places around the power supply after 30 minutes at idle and full load on the OC3D PSU Tester.
In: Temperature taken 5" away from the PSU ventilation grill inside the case.
Out: Temperature taken 5" away from the PSU fan at the back of the case.
Under idle conditions the Zeus 560w only increased the temperature of the case by 1.2°C, which is very respectable for a power supply utilising an 80mm fan.
Under heavy load, the Zeus 560w increased the internal case temperature by 3.3°C whilst managing to push most of the hot air out of the back of the case. This temperature increase should pose very little problems for people with small cases, and no additional case ventilation will be required when operating this power supply.
As mentioned earlier in the review, the ST56ZF uses the same 80mm fan as its bigger brother the ST75ZF. As a result of this, the noise levels have not changed, and the power supply remains quite loud at idle and load.
It does seem like the installed Sanyo Denki San Cooler is running at full speed regardless of the power supply temperature, which is a great shame, as if a fan controller was installed, this could reduce the noise output significantly.