What Power Supply should I get? How many Watts? Who made it? Guide Inside

Discussion in 'Computer Hardware' started by fedz, May 8, 2005.

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  1. fedz

    fedz GFX Techman

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2004
    Messages:
    1,316
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    The kingdom United
    <img src="http://forum.pcmech.com/images/icons/icon4.gif" /> Please see updated thread. This thread is no longer maintained, and has migrated to the new thread.

    <div style = "color: #DEDEDE; background-color: #F0F0F0">
    01.19.09 EDIT: Added links to "Further Links" to include FiringSquad Unofficial PSU Guide - a link brought to my attention by nicolaus corelius. Also, organized the Further Links section into Unordered Lists. If you have any other suggestions, please contact me via PM. Thanks - Moderator.<hr color=#3333ff>
    Table of Contents:
    -Five Important Rules to follow for Power Supply Unit (PSU) selection
    -<a href="#brand_list">Good/Bad Units List</a>
    -<a href="#GenPSUCalc">General wattage calculator</a>
    -<a href="#FurtherLinks">Further Links</a>
    -Who Really Made this Power Supply Unit? (thanks to flazing1)
    -<a href="#Notes">Notes</a>
    -<a href="#disclaimer">Disclaimer</a>


    This is a locked update from Bigandy's superb thread. It takes into account all the comments posted, and I have personally researched all the brands to ensure that the information is up to date. Also, read the disclaimer at the bottom.

    Five Important Rules to follow for Power Supply Unit (PSU) selection:
    In no particular order
    1) Do NOT skimp on the power supply unit - you are entrusting an expensive investment you've made in your computer to this unit.
    2) Brand/Manufacturer reputation is VERY important
    3) Rated/Advertised Wattage is NOT an indicator of quality or unit power.
    4) Do NOT trust a PSU that weighs less than your CPU to power your system.
    5) Research - let others do the testing for you and read about them. That's what this thread is for.

    <a name = "brand_list"><hr></a>
    NOTE: To emphasize the point, "reputable" generally refers to companies that make high quality units while "Less Reputable" refers to manufacturers that produce normally faulty units. Like with any electronic product, there is a chance of failure with any unit, so please keep that in mind as you shop for a power supply unit.<table border = "0" width = 100%><tr><td width = 40% valign = top><img src="http://forum.pcmech.com/images/icons/icon14.gif"> Reputable:<a href="#disclaimer"><sup>1</sup></a>
    Top quality PSU's in blue - for high-end builds

    AMS
    Antec
    Astec
    AOpen (select models)
    Channel Well
    Corsair
    <a href = "http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=Story&reid=71">Delta</a>
    E-Power
    Enermax
    Enlight
    Fortron Source

    HEC
    Hi-Power
    HiperPower
    Jeantech
    Mad Dog
    Mushkin
    NSpire
    OCZ (esp. EvoStream and GameXStream)
    PCMCIS
    PC Power & Cooling
    PowerMan
    Raidmax (select models from Tagan/Topower)
    Seasonic
    SilenX
    Silverstone
    Sparklepower
    Tagan
    Thermaltake (select models)
    TTGI/SuperFlower (select models)
    Verax
    Zalman
    Xclio (only GreatPower)</td>
    <td width = 30% valign = top>Questionable/Less Reputable:

    Achieve
    Allied
    Apevia (formerly Aspire, same quality)
    Bestec
    Codegen
    CoolMax
    Cyberzone
    DEER
    Dragon
    Eagle Tech
    EYE-T
    Greenline
    HIPRO
    JSP-tech
    KingStar
    Kingwin
    L&C
    Linkworld
    Okia
    Orion
    PowerMagic
    PowerTek
    PowerUp
    Powmax
    Q-Tec
    Raidmax (with cases)
    Rosewill
    Skyhawk
    Startech
    Turbolink
    Ultra (esp. X-Connect)
    Vantec
    Win
    </td>
    <td width = 30% valign = top>Not Enough Info:

    AGPB
    Ahanix
    Dynapower USA
    Levicom
    Soyo</td></tr>
    </table>

    <a name = "GenPSUCalc"><hr></a>

    General PSU Calculators:
    Please note these should be used as GUIDES - as noted on their disclaimers, they cannot take into account every component, every part that is drawing power. As a general guidelines, it's a good idea to marginally overshoot the calculated wattage in order to cover for the entire system.

    eXtreme PSU Calculator

    http://www.jscustompcs.com/power_supply/

    http://www.pcpowercooling.com/maxpc/cases.htm

    Above links courtesy of Pancake, Fedz, bill_bright, and glc.

    <a name = "FurtherLinks"><hr></a>

    Further links:
    courtesy of Hi Ho, flazing1, Panama Red, Cricket, Freakitchen, and glc
    <ul>
    <li>FiringSquad PSU Unofficial Listing</li>
    <li>JonnyGURU's Bargain Basement PSU Review</li>
    <li>HardOCP: Five $50 Power Supplies Tested (thanks to Cricket. glc: "<i>Yet another Deer literally blows up.........</i>")</li>
    <li>HardOCP: 450W-500W Battle Royale (Apevia PSU disintegrates during test)</li>
    <li>Directron: Weight vs. Power Efficiency</li>
    <li>nVidia Forums: The Who and Why of Power Supplies, With purchasing suggestions</li>
    <li>Who Really Made this Power Supply Unit?[/bl]</li>
    <li>Tom's Hardware: Deceptive ratings: 21 PSU's compared</li>
    <li>Tom's Hardware: High-End PSU Comparison</li>
    <li>Tom's Hardware: Power Supplies Under Full Load</li>
    <li>PC Stats: Most common ways to kill a PC</li>
    </ul>
    <a name = "Notes"><hr></a>

    Notes:

    - PSU's inside manufacturer's cases, like Dell or HP, can sometimes use power supply units that may or may not be sufficient to allow for upgrades. In other words, you may need to upgrade your PSU in the real chance that the unit cannot handle the added load. Take note, and do your research first.

    - Dell has often been using PC P&C for their PSU. HP, eMachine, Compaq, and Gateway USUALLY use either/or Bestec and Hipro.

    - Modular PSU's are not all good. The connections are not very efficient and provide a lot of electrical resistance. In fact, I just avoid them.

    <a name="disclaimer"><hr></a>

    DISCLAIMER:
    Although some PSU's are listed in the good list, this does not mean that they are never going to fail. No component is ever perfect, these power supplies just have a higher success rate and generally provide cleaner, more efficient power.
    The same goes for the 'bad' PSU's. Just because you have a 'bad' PSU it does not mean that it is going to fail on you the next day. These PSU's have been reported as problematic and there is a higher probability of them giving out, or at least not providing clean power through stable rails. There is also the matter of 'rated power'. Some "500W" power supplies have been known to provide less than 200W, whereas some good quality PSU's can provide more power than their rating.

    </div>
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 12, 2009
  2. kram

    kram

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2000
    Messages:
    7,838
    Location:
    Georgetown,KY,USA
    Power Supply OEM List legend
    (taken from http://forums.nvidia.com/index.php?showtopic=4146)

    #1a
    Topower
    (some TTGI - Super-Flower, OCZ, EPower/Tagan, RaidMax, Vantec, ACI)

    #1b
    FSP - Fortron Source Power
    (Fortron, Sparkle, Cooler Master*, Zalman, Aopen)

    #1c
    CWT - Channel Well Technology
    (Antec, Lead Power, Enermax, Xclio, Turbolink)

    While these top three encompass more than the re-badges I've named, you can usually bet on a solid performer if you pick one of them. It's highly debatable which are better than others, of course. But all in all, everyone has had pretty good experiences. Not suprisingly, they are priced accordingly. None of them in the 400W range are going to be under $50. If your power supply is one of the above, chances are you can trust both the unit itself and it's claims on wattage per line.


    #2a
    Sea Sonic

    #2b
    Wintech
    (Ultra X-finity)

    #2c
    Acbel Polytech
    (Stateside, just the Cooler Master True Power)

    Same with these, a bit more esoteric. If you can afford a Sea Sonic these have the best efficiency of any consumer switching PSU for computers. You'll pay for it up front, but your electric bill will be less in the long run.


    #3a
    Sirtec
    (Chieftec, Enlight, ThermalTake, High Power)

    #3b
    HEC - HeroIchi Electronic Co.
    (HEC, CompuCase)

    #3c
    AMS - American Media Systems
    (Mercury)

    Here you start finding dissention in the owners. Some claim it's the best in the world, some wouldn't let their dog run Windows 3.11 on one. Some of them have great reputations (TT & HEC) but the problem is a "squeaky wheel" one - it's hard to know just how good/bad things are when only people with problems post.


    #4a
    Youngyear
    (Aspire, Logisys, MGE, Ultra X-Connect, Rosewill)

    #4b
    ATNG
    (Coolink, CoolMax, Rosewill, StarTech)

    Now we're into budget territory. Maybe it's just a quality control issue; some people love them but most hate them, and from bad personal experiences. I personally wouldn't touch them. They should work, but no one will be suprised if it smokes itself and takes your motherboard with it. They rarely come close to what their ratings state, very poorly constructed. (but usually colors or chrome and UV sleeved and colored Molex's and LED fans!) These for the most part are toys, although you might get lucky. Not all of them are, but it does take more effort in sifting through them than it's worth.


    #5
    CRAP!
    (L&C, Deer, Allied, Eagle, CodeGen/Foxconn, EverPower, Maxpower)
     
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