Although the purchase of computer power supplies is often overlooked, the importance of this component cannot be overemphasized. The fact is, PC power is as important as CPU, graphics card, or hard drive.
If the choice of power supply is inappropriate, you may end up with low power consumption, which is not enough to run all PC hardware and software. Likewise, you may end up using high power, which may burn computer components.
When it comes to choosing a power supply, there should be many considerations in terms of quality. You don’t want your PC to have too little or too much battery. In order to avoid power-related accidents, the power capacity of computer hardware and software must be carefully analyzed.
Having said that, let’s take a look at some aspects to consider when choosing a power supply. To get some context, let’s start with a quick definition of power supply.
What is a power supply?
A power supply, also known as a power supply unit (PSU), is a computer hardware component used to convert alternating current (AC) to direct current (DC). It means to input power from the mains of 210V, 240 or 250V AC, and the power supply will convert it to 5V, -5V, +12V, -12V, +3.3V or -3.3V DC, and then use it to power the hardware components of the PC .
How to buy power comes down to a set of factors. The following are some things to pay attention to when purchasing a power supply.
1. Power supply size
There are two main types; ATX and SFX.
ATX power supply has the following specifications:
- size: standard
- aspect: 150 x 140 x 86 mm
SFX power supply has the following specifications:
- size: standard
- aspect: 125 x 100 x 63.5mm
2. Power Module
Power modules are roughly divided into two categories:
A generation). According to whether the wire is detachable.
ii) According to support for future upgrades
- Classified according to whether the wire is detachable
Under this category, the power supply unit is divided into three main modules. These include:
- Full module: This module allows the removal and replacement of wires according to the user’s preferences.
- Half module: In this power module, some parts of the cable can be removed. But please note that the power cords of the motherboard and CPU cannot be removed.
- Non-module: All cables of this power supply module are connected to its host components and cannot be removed at all. In addition, it has no space to accommodate any additional plugs.
- Classified by support for future upgrades
Here, we consider the possibility of future power supply unit hardware upgrades. This means you need to look for a PSU with replaceable components. This makes it easy to replace components or upgrade the PSU in the event of damage.
3. Number of power connections
When buying an ideal PSU, the number of power connections is also a very important aspect that you need to consider. Generally, the number of motherboard power supplies is 24-pin (20+4), while the power supplies for CPU and GPU are 8-pin (4+4) and 8-pin (4+6) respectively.
It is also worth noting that if you plan to increase the number of graphics cards or SATA hard drives at some point, you will need to look at the number of Type D and SATA interfaces. In this way, you can reserve some power ports.
4. 80 PLUS
80 PLUS basically refers to the efficiency of the power supply when converting alternating current to direct current. This is important because there will always be some power loss during the conversion process. With this in mind, 80 PLUS has a table showing the efficiency in terms of certification levels. It’s arranged in such a way that a value further to the right indicates a more effective conversion rate. The conversation is also real.
80 PLUS includes power supplies that have been independently tested and rated for power output, efficiency and load capacity. It is divided into four levels based on these rates. These levels include 80 PLUS, 80 PLUS Bronze, 80 PLUS Silver and 80 PLUS Gold.
Another thing to remember is that 80 PLUS does not represent the quality of the power supply. From a cost-effective point of view, 80 PLUS Bronze medals are usually the first choice for bearings due to their economy and performance.
5. Power consumption calculation
The power consumption of a computer is the sum of the power required by its hardware components to operate effectively. The most common power consumption rates are 450W, 500W, 650W, 750W and 850W.
As we mentioned before, the power supply you choose should be able to support all the components of your device. The most important of this kind of hardware are the motherboard, graphics card, CPU, memory, and cooling fan. Before deciding on a specific type of power supply for your computer, you need to calculate the total power consumption of all these components.
We have compiled a graph of CPU and graphics card power consumption rates. You can use this chart to obtain an estimate of the power consumption of the system, and use this knowledge to purchase a suitable power supply unit.
Due to the large number of motherboards, fans, and other PC hardware on the market today, choosing the right power supply can be a bit challenging. This is especially true because hardware components from different manufacturers may have different power ratings. Nevertheless, we recommend that you directly increase the calculated CPU and graphics power consumption values by about 100W. In other words:
Total power = CPU power + GPU power + 100 watts.
Reputable websites can help you get close to accurate power consumption rates of PC hardware components, rather than relying on guesses and approximate power consumption values.
This is one such website that allows you to select hardware online and estimate power in watts. It is also worth noting that if you plan to overclock your PC, please make sure to consider the overclocking wattage (wattage) when calculating the total output power of the power supply unit. Generally, overclocking consumes about 30% of the CPU and graphics card power.
6. Security and Protection
- Daily maintenance of power supply
In order to keep the power supply in good condition, many interventions may be of great help. The following are some daily maintenance tips for the power supply:
- Place your PC in a clean, dust-free environment.
- Clean the dirt, dust and grime that may accumulate on the power supply unit
- Avoid overloading the power supply. Excessive power will damage the PSU.
- Every once in a while, let a technician check the input and output current and voltage of the device to ensure that it is working properly.
Seven, power supply brand recommendation
The power supply is roughly divided into:
A generation).First-class brand
ii) Second-class brand
Some priority PSU brands include:
Seasonic is a leading manufacturer and retailer of high-end power equipment. The company is located in Taiwan.
Delta operates standard single-phase power supply units with an operating temperature range of -20°C to +70°C.
Corsair power supplies use logic links to control the resonant topology to improve system power efficiency at low loads.
Antec is a Taiwanese company that specializes in manufacturing PC cases and high-quality power supplies.
A leading PSU OEM that produces power supply units for companies such as EVGA. It is one of the latest entrants to the North American PSU market.
Common PSU brands in this category include:
- Great Wall
- Key hunting
- Cooler master
1. Does a higher power supply consume more power?
No. The power consumption of the power supply depends entirely on the power consumed by the hardware. However, high-power power supplies are usually more expensive than standard ones. Therefore, you only need to know which power supply is best for you based on your power consumption requirements, as shown in the power calculation formula above.
2. Is the larger the power the better?
Yes. Rather than trying to run a low-wattage power supply at full capacity, it is better to have a higher-wattage PSU that can run at half the capacity.
3. What kind of power supply is good for playing games?
Equipped with a power supply with an output range of 650W to 850W can better serve gaming PCs equipped with mid-to-high-end graphics cards. In short, most gamers should use a 750W PSU. If you plan to overclock, then you definitely need a higher capacity power supply.