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Reviewed by: Ed Lau [09.15.03]
Edited by: Carl Nelson

Manufactured by: SilverStoneTek

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There are always certain products that are difficult to write an article on because they simply do not excite the reviewer. I mean, how often do you see a network cable or a printer cartridge featured on the front page? Never. Why? Because they're boring.

The power supply was once one of these, branded with the stigmata of being...ordinary. It wasn't too long ago that people didn't think twice about what kind of unit was supplying the juice for their rig or what it looked like and just looking at the plain silver boxes that manufacturers produced, it was rather apparent that the power supply wasn't exactly a main event.

In recent years, however, this has changed significantly. While power supplies remain absent from the main event, at least they're part of the opening act and with the advent of the large case window, product designers are putting more thought into what they look like now that they aren't hidden behind a wall of aluminum.

Today, we'll be taking a look at the "Strider" SST-ST360 from SilverStoneTek, which is poorly announced by the extremely generic name. I still considered power supplies to be rather boring at the time but I was intrigued by the specs of this particular unit.

A Bit About SilverStone by the Editor in Chief

You'll recall that we reviewed several products from Cooler Master this year. We've found their products to be very good, especially their cases. In both of our Cooler Master case reviews, we noted that the cases were actually manufactured by a company in Taiwan called ATCs, which was founded by Cooler Master in 2000.  They were a kind of "special-ops" company which specialized in making premium quality enclosures.

I'm not sure about the full details, but what ended up happening was the departure of several key employees at ATCs. These people decided to start their own company: SilverStone. This power supply should be the first of many products we'll review from SilverStone.

"High efficiency power solution", "fan sensor", yakkity yak...I've heard all that before.  However, this was the first PSU I've seen that features a 120mm fan. At first, I was a little disappointed that it was JUST a 120mm fan, however, but with an advertised 26dBA noise level, if it cools well, we'd have an excellent silent PC solution on our hands.  Fan speeds are automatically varied depending on the temperature of the power supply, courtesy of a temperature sensor on the inside.

In addition to the specs, the design looked great as well with the circuits wrapped in some silky smooth black aluminum and a honeycomb looking grille on the backside. I just had to take a closer look.

All my expectations were met when I opened the box and saw that sexy black aluminum and the massive 120mm fan taking up almost the entire bottom side of the unit. This is definetly the most asthetically pleasing power supply I've ever laid eyes upon. Seriously. Match it up with a nice glossy black case like a Antec Sonata, and you'll have one badass box.

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