Review Index:

Spire SP-500W Rocketeer V Power Supply Review

Manufacturer: Spire

Introduction and Features

The Spire SP-500W Rocketeer V power supply is rated for 500 watts nominal load and features two blue LED cooling fans, a mirror finish Titanium-look chassis and modular cables.  Note: the SP-500W model we have for review has just been replaced with the SP-500W SLI Series, which now includes a second PCI-Express cable (the SP-500W only has one).<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />


Spire is a well known and respected name in the CPU cooler industry, especially in <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Europe.  Their new line of SpirePower power supplies includes units ranging from 300W up to 600W. 


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SpirePower SP-500W Rocketeer V Main Features:


·          500W combined power output (550W maximum)

·          Intel BTX 1.0a & ATX 2.03 compliant

·          Modular EZ-Cable power connectors (peripheral devices)

·          Dual PCI-E 6-pin connectors (SP-500W SLI Series)

·          Two blue LED dual ball bearing cooling fans

·          Variable fan speed auto-control with manual override

·          Titanium-look mirror finish

·          3-Year warranty


The Spire SP-500W power supply was evaluated on both features and performance.  A full range of equipment was used to test the power supply under controlled load conditions.  In addition to measuring the power going in and coming out I looked at voltage regulation, electrical noise (AC ripple), sound level, efficiency and cost.  Here is a list of the equipment used during testing.




·          FLUKE 87-III True RMS digital multimeter (Accuracy +/- 0.05%)

·          WattsUp? Pro — digital wattmeter (Accuracy 3% of full scale)

·          Hitachi V-650F 60 MHz dual trace oscilloscope (Accuracy +/- 3%)

·          Powerstat Variable Autotransformer, 1.4 KVA, 0-140 VAC

·          FLUKE  52-II digital thermometer (Accuracy +/- 0.3ºC/0.5ºF)

·          Extech Model 407736 digital sound level meter (Accuracy +/- 1.5 dB)

·          AccuLab V1-10kg digital balance (Accuracy +/- 1g)

·          Homemade PSU load tester — selectable load (up to 470W)

·          Seasonic PSU load tester (up to 137W)


Establishing a controlled load is critical to testing and evaluating a PC power supply.  I built my own power supply load tester using 13 wire-wound, ceramic resistors of various sizes.  This unit can place up to a 470 watt combined load onto the power supply being tested and includes independent +12V1 and +12V2 sections.  Different combinations of resistors can be switched in or out to select various loads.  In addition to my own load tester, I also used a load tester manufactured by Seasonic (75W and 137W loads).