Zalman ZM500-GS / ZM500-GT PSU preview: Compared to 20 other 500-550 watt power supplies

Zalman sent two of their 500W power supplies, the ZM500-GS and the ZM500-GT. We tested and compared them to 20 other 500 watt and 550 watt PSUs.

There are a lot 500W power supplies on offer in the Zalman catalog. With seven different models (ZM500-LX, -LE, -GT, -GS, -HP, -ST and -RS) you'd almost expect that only Zalman's own product manager knows exactly how each how is positioned in the market. Judging from their prices, it would appear that the -GS and -GT models are entry-level products.

The ZM500-GS is the cheapest 500W Zalman PSU with an average price of £37 or €40, and the -GT isn't much more expensive at £49 or €59. They're budget power supplies, but from a brand that sees itself as making quality products.

Both Zalman power supplies that we are testing here have a maximum capacity of 500W, but they're not the same. The ZM500-GS does have 80 Plus certification, but the ZM500-GT is certified 80 Plus, without a Bronze or other suffix. Zalman does make claims of an efficiency of up to 84 per cent and up to 87 per cent. We'll find out in our test if they come close to that.

The ZM500-GS has two 12V rails, one that can supply 24A and one that can supply 21A. Combined the two 12V rails can supply only 34A or 408W. The ZM500-GT also has two 12V rails that can each supply 18A and 36A in total, or 432W. These are the specs on paper, to be clear.

The number of connectors is the same on both power supplies. 4x molex, 6x SATA and 2x PEG. Both power supplies have a 12 cm fan, and it's not semi-passive which is to be expected at this price point. The PSUs aren't modular, but all the cables are sleeved.

Check out the rest of this review of the Zalman ZM500-GS PSU on Hardware.info.