Kingwin Stryker STR500 Power Supply Review

The Kingwin Stryker 500W Power Supply is a mid-powered computer PSU built specifically for those enthusiasts looking for quality power. The big feature here is that this unit is fanless, that means zero moving parts. If you are looking for silent in the 500 watt and up range, this is a good start.

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Overview

The first thing we are going to look at with the Kingwin STR-500 is its packaging, accessories, and documentation. While normally none of these items is a make or break item for a power supply the packaging quite often contains a lot of information about the product we are purchasing. The inclusion of an owner’s manual that provides actual information about our product is also of great help. Accessories are almost unnecessary with a power supply as the unit is self contained, unless it is modular, but there are cases where a manufacturer can include useful accessories to make installation, routing, and use more efficient.

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I am not sure pointing a gun at some one is the best way to start off a relationship. Well, I am fairly certain they told me that during marriage counseling anyway. Barring the dude trying to force me to buy the Stryker 500W at gun point, the front of the Stryker 500W packaging contains a few advertising points related to the units fanless operation, high quality components and an 80Plus Platinum seal. A quick check of the 80Plus website does indeed find this unit certified for 80Plus Platinum. The back of the packaging has a few interesting points, but the most apparent among these is the return of the "Overclocking" issue. As we see here there is a big shield plastered with "500W Real Power Platinum Rating" "Overclock Version" "Can be overclocked to 600W continuous at 80+ Gold Rating." My forehead still hurts from the facepalming it received the last time we saw this kind of incorrect marketing speak with the LZP-550, but no matter how much abuse my face takes I have a feeling that Kingwin’s marketing department is not going to change this wording. So let's move on. The remainder of the Stryker 500W packaging contains a lot of marketing points that cover things like rated temperature (50C), component selection, connector type, etc. All of this is backed by a 5 year warranty which is once more a very nice improvement from Kingwin and a solid support timeframe.

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The power information for the Kingwin STR-500 is very similar to what we saw from the recent LZP-550. Here, we see that the STR-500 has available up to ~99% of its capacity on the 12v rail (41.5A) if needed. The minor rails have a rather low maximum combined rating, 100W, with each individual rail being limited to just 20A. This is coupled with 5 Molex, 6 SATA, two 6 pin PCI-Express connectors and two modified 8 pin PCI-Express connectors which is a reduction of two SATA connectors compared to the LZP-550. While not rated for SLI at this time, this unit could physically support many iterations of SLI, however 4 PCI-Express connectors on a 500W unit is really getting towards overstocked and the unit probably would have been better served by retaining the SATA connectors instead. If nothing else, this configuration ensures that there are likely to be very few times where this unit will be under equipped to at least physically support your videocard configurations.

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Now when we look at the "overclock version" label, we see that the unit has an increased 12v capacity of 8A (now totaling 49.5A) but unlike with the LZP-550, the 5v capacity and 3.3v capacity are unchanged when looking at the "overclock version" power label. The 12v rails increase to 594W is a very nice increase over the base line rating of the unit, but it can't be stressed enough that this is not really any sort of "overclock." However, if the unit is capable of doing this 600W continuously in our testing at 80Plus Gold levels and 500W at 80Plus Platinum levels similar to what we saw from the LZP-500, then we can probably forgive the horrible marketing again as well. Maybe.

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Once we open the Stryker 500W retail box, we find the power supply, power cable, mounting screws, modular cables in a bag, and the user manual. The user manual that accompanies this unit is 5 pages long in English only. The manual seems to not be specific to the Stryker 500W as in addition to listing the pinouts for the connectors, some basic electrical specifications that relate to the protection circuitry and the general electrical specifications (though not the power output table), there is a rather detailed explanation of the fan operation. This unit lacks a fan given it is, well, fanless. As with the recent LZP-550, the manual also lacks the power output ratings for the "overclock version" feature, warranty, etc. Previously, we said the LZP-550 manual could use a lot of work and today with the Stryker 500W manual that is even truer.