Introduction, Specifications, Availability and Pricing
Today we've got quite a bit of a treat for the hardcore PSU guys out there. We're taking a look at the new Silverstone Zeus 1350W power supply. Those who frequent our power supply reviews know that we've covered just about every Silverstone power supply they've released in the last several years. They've never let us down and we couldn't wait to get our hands on the Zeus to see what it could do.
For those who aren't familiar with the Zeus series from Silverstone, it was originally a server/workstation line that emphasized on better voltage regulation, higher operating temperatures and heavy-duty components. This caught on with the extreme overclockers so they've added a few features to cater to their desires such as adjustable voltage settings and modular cabling. Despite adding some features for overclockers, they've still kept the server/workstation design such as the rear mounted fan as server chassis rely on front to back ventilation instead of bottom to rear.
Keep reading as we tear into the Zeus 1350W and see just how well it stacks up to what we're used to seeing from Silverstone.
Specifications, Availability and Pricing
The Zeus 1350W power supply is capable of operating as both a single 12V rail power supply or with six independent 12V rails. Each 12V rail is rated for 30A each and when combined have a maximum output of 105A or 1260W. Both the 5V and 3.3V rails are rated for 25A each with a maximum combined output of 170W. The 5VSB rail is rated for 4A with a total output of 17.5W. Maximum continuous output of the Silverstone Zeus is 1350W.
As you would expect from a power supply that is geared for server use and extreme overclockers, the feature list is completely filled out. All protections are present including SCP, OVP, OCP, OPP, and OTP. The Zeus 1350W is fully modular and all cables are fully sleeved. The power supply is rated for 80 PLUS Silver efficiency, which is much higher than you will find many server power supplies rated for. The Zeus is also rated for 100% continuous output at 50C and even 80% (1080W) at 60C.
Silverstone has an MSRP of $349.99 on the Zeus 1350W power supply which places it in a very middle of the road price point. Antares Pro has it for sale a bit cheaper at $318.99 after shipping, which gives it even more value for the money. Silverstone backs the power supply with a five year warranty.
Just as you would expect from any product with Zeus in the name, he is present on the packaging in an angry form. There is a very solid list of features here on the front and what many will be drawn to are the points addressing the strong voltage regulation and pots for user-adjustable voltages.
The back re-lists the same points as listed on the front, but does so in numerous languages.
Half of one side gives us a few specifications and part of the I/O capabilities of the unit.
The other half gives us the rest of the I/O specifications for the unit.
The other side of the box gives us a list of connectors available on the Zeus 1350.
Rotating around to the top of the box, we find some more features about the unit. Something we haven't seen yet is the fan speed control switch. This allows you to let the fan be thermally controller or run at 100% all of the time.
Inside the Box
Packaging for the Zeus 1350W is great on the inside. All of the modular cables are in the small box and the power supply itself is surrounded by thick foam.
Removing the power supply from the box reveals the rough textured black finish on the unit. The top features the rail distribution should the user decide to use it as a multi-rail power supply instead of a single rail.
If there was any doubt that the Zeus was meant for servers and workstations, the Zeus measures in at 9.25 inches long.
The other side presents us with a few more vents, the serial number and a label for the ports and switch on the front.
The back presents us with the heavy duty AC input, on/off rocker switch, exhaust fan, fan speed select switch and power indicator light. Quite a bit is going on in the back of the Zeus.
Just as much is happening in the front of the unit. Aside from the modular connectors, there are three potentiometers for adjusting the voltages and the selector switch to switch between multi-rail and single rail mode.
Silverstone provides quite a bit of cabling with the Zeus.
Also included with the power supply are thumb screws, mounting screws, AC input cord, some Velcro cable ties and some zip ties.
Rounding out the contents of the box are the two manuals. The one on the left is a generic manual for installing power supplies and the one on the right is specific to the Zeus 1350 with more information.
Cabling Arrangement and A Look Inside
Despite the plethora of cables that are present with the Zeus 1350W, the list of cables is much simpler than you would expect. The power supply features dual EPS12V cables of varying length to help with cable management. There are two different sets of PCI-E cables as well which help with cable clutter even further. Peripherals are handled via a total of 16 SATA connectors, six Molex connectors and two FDD connectors. Overall, it is a very solid list that should handle pretty much anything thrown at it.
Rail distribution can be very simplistic or very complicated depending on how the user wishes to utilize the power supply. Out of the box, it can be used as a single rail power supply. At the flip of a switch, it can be turned into the six-rail power supply as well. If this is done, 12V1 and 12V2 each handle a single EPS12V connector. 12V3 takes care of the Main connector and all peripherals. This leaves 12V4, 12V5, and 12V6 to each handle two PCI-E connectors each.
A Look Inside
Even though the power supply is incredibly long, the unit is packed full. The heat sinks are placed perfectly to draw the air across them as it is pulled out of the back.
Two Hitachi capacitors sit on the primary side of the Zeus. While we couldn't get a good shot of them, the secondary capacitors are a mix of Nippon Chemi-Con and Nichicon capacitors.
Something that we've not seen for a long time is the use of an 80mm fan to cool the power supply. Since this PSU is intended for server environments, it is necessary to maintain the front to back flow of air. Silverstone utilized the Sunon PF80251B3 to move the hot air out the back.
Test Results and Final Thoughts
Our load tests utilize a couple of FAST ATE active load testers and a variety of other equipment such as an oscilloscope, power conditioner, temperature probe and a power consumption meter. You can read more about our standard testing approach here.
The tests performed are based around six conceivable setups that are out there and progressively load down the PSU up to the power supply's limits or 1000W, whichever comes first. Since our test equipment's limits are lower than that of the Silverstone Zeus 1350W power supply, we can only test it to 1000W. Also note that for testing purposes, we will be testing the power supply in single rail mode.
The above tests represent typical loads that we have measured from various systems and are meant to give a rough idea of where your computer might fall in line with our tests. Please keep in mind that each system is different and actual loads can vary greatly even with similar hardware.
Something that we don't normally have present here are two result tables for one power supply. The table above represents the unit out of the box without any adjustments.
Let's start by taking a look at the voltages to see how well this unit did during testing. Starting with the 12V rail, we see 2% regulation from start to finish with a total drop of .12V. The 5V rail managed to stay within 2% of specification with a total drop of .07V from start to finish. Moving towards the 3.3V rail, we see that regulation was within 2% of specification with a total voltage drop of .07V.
DC Output quality for the Zeus 1350W was superb and well within specification. During Test 1, we saw 7mV of noise on our scope. When we increased the loads in Test 4, the ripple climbed to 14mV at a little over half load. During Test 6 under a load of 1000W, the oscilloscope showed a maximum of 20mv on noise on the 12V rail.
The Silverstone Zeus 1350W power supply is rated for 80 PLUS Silver efficiency. This means that the power supply must perform at 85%/88%/85% efficiency at 20%/50%/100% loads respectively. As you can see, the Zeus 1350W passed on our bench, and wasn't close to failing at any point.
The above results are after taking the time to adjust voltages on each rail and making sure everything was stable. As you can see, very little changed concerning efficiency and DC output quality, but the voltage regulation results changed drastically. All three rails were able to be tuned to within 1% regulation and much tighter than anything we've ever been able to produce before.
There are currently just over a handful of true enthusiast style power supplies on the market right now and the Zeus is competing for a spot in which those who seek a power supply of this level demand the absolute best, no matter the cost. It is safe to say that the Zeus deserves one of these spots on performance alone as the above results speak clearly as to what the unit is capable of.
It doesn't seem like anything special out of the box as the numbers from the first result chart don't differentiate it from any of the other Silverstone power supplies that we've seen. In fact, it fairs slightly worse due to the lack of efficiency. That drastically changes when you add in the ability to tune the voltages to the levels we were achieving. It becomes and overclocker's dream unit as it produces clean power at the voltage levels you desire.
We're glad to see Silverstone bring the Zeus to market for high-end overclockers and we expect this to become the power supply of choice for many wishing to take their overclocking above and beyond. I hope to see Silverstone keep the Zeus around and would love to see them mix it with capabilities of the Corsair AXi series power supplies.
Perhaps a future revamp of the Zeus can add such features and make this the best power supply ever released to the consumer.