Zalman 300W ST-300BLP Quiet Power Supply
Zalman is better known for their elaborate
fan shaped heatsinks then anything else. Their heatsinks are always of the highest quality and even though
they don't cater towards the overclocker enthusiast market, they still perform quite
Zalman's claim to
fame has always been "noise prevention" and the Zalman 300W ST-300BLP is the
quietest PSU we've ever used. In fact, it measures less than 25 dB loud so it is
virtually silent in operation, and this has a lot to do with the fan and how
slow it rotates.
The Zalman ST-300BLP retails for $69USD on Directron
, and supplies 300W of power to today's AMD or
Pentium 4 systems.The
near-silent powersupply comes with a standard 24-pin ATX power connector,
4-pin ATX 12V (P4) connector and an Aux. 6-pin AT power connector in
addition to a host of peripheral connectors which we'll get to in just a
moment. The powersupply has an on/off button and mains voltage selector so it
120V or 220V AC.
cables are nice and long at about 58 cm which is great for those tall tower
cases. That's extremely useful for users of full tower ATX cases, as they
shouldn't have to worry about power cables not
lower drives or fans.
a total of six molex connectors and three floppy drive connectors. Of course
where this Zalman separates itself from the rest is with noise, or more
correctly the lack of it. When the powersupply is in full operation it
is hardly audible! With its fan running at 1500 RPM at 25 degrees Celsius
or below, it's almost impossible to hear unless your head
next to the fan.
When the PSU detects the temperature rise past 25 degrees, the
fan automatically starts to spin faster up to a maximum of at 53 degrees Celsius 2000
RPM and even at that barely produces any noise. The fan is produced by Globe Fan
here are the specifications
for the people who are interested. Note that we only measured its
at room temperature speeds.
venting properties of the Zalman 300W ST-300BLP
are not going to be quite as good as the much loved (quality set
aside) Enermax PSU's these days. The one fan doesn't move that much air, and
the vents are only sized proportionately for that. If you're running an AMD system which generates a
lot of heat you're going to want to look at investing in another alternative
for system exhaust like a low-noise case fan.
Zalman 300W ST-300BLP Quiet PSU is the easily the quietest power supply we've
ever used. Zalman has done quite a few good things with this PSU, we really
appreciated the longer then usual cables, be it the main ATX power connector or the
molex and floppy drive connectors.
Having a quiet/slow PSU fan does have its drawbacks and we
found that the Zalman 300W ST-300BLP is not very good for system exhaust
and high powered AMD systems specifically might run into possible case-temp
problems. Intel based systems shouldn't be affected by this though. Realistically though, the type
of user looking to add a silent PSU is not going to
be the same person with an exceptionally loud CPU cooler and overclocked system
At $69USD from the online retailer Directron,
the Zalman PSU does offer quiet performance and 300W of power at a moderate
price. The key here of course is the very low noise levels the powersupply
creates, so it is difficult to compare it against standard PSU's because in
those cases wattage is usually the main selling point. Bottom line, good silent
power supply, good build quality, less than ideal venting and