We had a lot of troubles with Vantec’s last power supply, the Stealth.  We found an error in the production label, which quickly led to a change in all the labeling on all Stealth power supplies.  If anything, we were glad we could make a difference to change a product before it was too late.  Vantec took a lot of our comments to heart, and thus put out a second revision on the Stealth.

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Click to Enlarge

We were told that some of the changes in the power supply included tighter manufacturing specifications and an overall better performing final product.  Vantec also took the liberty of lowering the price of the unit a bit to avoid discouraging system builders.  With those new elements in mind, we set out to try one more time. 

Wattages

 

3.3V

5V

12V

-12

-5

+5vsb

combined theoretical

actual combined

advertised  total

Vantec Stealth 520W

85.80

260.00

336.00

12.00

4.00

10.00

345.80

260.00

520.00

Notice that the combined rail on the 520W Stealth is 260 watts.  Interestingly enough, +5.0V rail comes in at 260W.  This is unusually high, and as a result the +3.3V rail is unusually low.  We definitely would not recommend this power supply for AMD system builders, especially overclockers. (Intel system builders will have no problems with wattages).

The saving grace for Vantec comes in the features.  Later in this article we will explain why we are not crazy about the fan control switches, but the cable management, serial ATA connectors, and universal ATX adaptor are great additions. The 24 pin ATX cable will only show full usefulness on Intel server motherboards, but the 24pin to 20pin adaptor is included for standard desktop motherboards as well. The Stealth also comes with 9 standard molexes, which makes sense if this power supply is to target server markets.

By far, the best feature is the external AC plug.  Perhaps it is sort of a nostalgic addition for power supplies, but it definitely is an option that makes sense.  For example, plugging your speakers into the Stealth assures that they are off when your computer is off.  Thus, the speakers do not crackle or produce feedback when shutting down. We don't really recommend connecting a monitor to this outlet, particularly CRTs. You can really damage a CRT by pulling the power on it, so if your computer shuts down unexpectedly a lot, you will have a tough time keeping your CRT in good health.

The Stealth is not a cheap power supply.   Our 520W version costs about $120, which limits their ability to reach out to system builders with shallow pockets. Most of this cost is attributed to the aluminum construction, but other things such as the fan control also kick the price up.

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  • Anonymous User - Saturday, August 2, 2003 - link

    #11, yes P=IxV, but the power ratings in the table were obviously taken from manufacturers' data rather than actual measurements, which is why when any power rating for any of the positive voltages is divided by that voltage, the quotient exactly equals an integer. That would not be a problem if all manufacturers applied identical standards to their specifications, but many computer users have learned that this isn't the case. Reply
  • Anonymous User - Saturday, August 2, 2003 - link

    Perhaps you could include a Q-Tec PSU in the next review? They retail here in Sweden at about 60% of the price of corresponding Enermax and other high quality units, so assuming they aren't totally lousy they're very cheap. Reply
  • Anonymous User - Friday, August 1, 2003 - link

    I agree with #15. Definitely take a look at the PC Power and Cooling 400w Silencer PSU. I own two of these units and they're very high quality with reasonably low noise. Reply
  • Anonymous User - Friday, August 1, 2003 - link

    Enlight power supplies are always being excluded from these PSU comparsions. I have a Enlight 360W PSU and it's very stable and very quiet. Test some Enlight PSUs! Reply
  • Anonymous User - Friday, August 1, 2003 - link

    I appreciated the comments concerning AMD users, but what I really need is some sort of guidance on AMD processor speed vs combined power or 3.3V rail current for upgrading older systems. Many older cases have limited power supplies and I'm trying to figure out the fastest processor I can install and still have reliable operation. Example: A 300 watt supply with 25A of 3.3V can only support up to a Athlon 1600+ on an ECS K7S5A Pro or a 350 watt with a combined power of 200W can support up to 2200+. Oh, and forget that old 250 watt power supply altogether. I need something like that... yeah, I know: your mileage may vary, void where prohibited by law, no watts were endangered in the making of this article.....:-) Reply
  • Anonymous User - Friday, August 1, 2003 - link

    Next time you guys might want to check out the PC P&C Silencer 400. It's built just as heavily as the Turbo Cool but with a quieter fan. Reply
  • Anonymous User - Friday, August 1, 2003 - link

    Hey guys, im sure 1 or 2 of you resistorheads are an ee or will soon be one.. ripple and noise are only part of a good pwr supply.. we need the facts... how many watts do these power supplies really put out. how do they respond with a big load.. will they take an overload.. how well are they protected...thats what i wanna read about Reply
  • MIDIman - Friday, August 1, 2003 - link

    WOW - excellent review. I'm getting a zalman for my silent box.

    Nice to see you guys pumping out articles quickly again! Thanks!
    Reply
  • idenyit - Friday, August 1, 2003 - link

    hey just wondering the allied A400ATX hows that compare with the B400ATX thats offered on newegg? any differences? Reply
  • Anonymous User - Friday, August 1, 2003 - link

    #10, doesnt P=IV? The Power and Voltage measurements were given. Reply

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