How to Buy the Power Supply Unit for Your PC?
The majority of the PC users ignore this component while building a PC, but ask any PC hardware enthusiast and he/she will tell that it is the most important component of a PC. When building a new PC people neglect this importance and buy dirt-cheap PSUs to save a couple of bucks. This small saving could bring a big hole in the near future if you don’t pay attention to it. A PSU has the job to take a high input voltage from the power socket and convert it by reducing it to 12V or less in order to power up the critical components inside the case.
There are so many connectors on a PSU that any beginner could get a big headache while figuring out their functionalities. A PSU will become the powerhouse to expensive components like CPU, Graphics card, SSD, Liquid Cooler, etc. In this guide, EverythingTech will help to know how to buy a PSU (Power Supply Unit) for your PC.
Brands to consider
A brand is an important thing here to consider. You cannot just blindly trust any Chinese knockoff, ram the PSU in your CPU, and give power to your PC. There are major players like Corsair, Cooler Master, Deepcool, Antec, EVGA, NZXT, Thermaltake, etc. known for their remarkable trust and reliability. We highly recommend not buying any PSU under $35; you can find stuff as cheap as $10. Trusting such products for you other expensive parts could be fatal.
The Total Power Capacity
Most PSU manufacturers give a power rating their PSU in Watt, it explains how much the unit can handle without causing issues.
Now to begin you need to ask how much power you have got inside the computer case. The mainstream PC users will be completely fine with a 400 Watt PSU. However, if you jump up to do gaming or other intensive stuff, then you will need more power (above 450 Watts). Try to calculate the total power consumption of every component in your computer. We know it is not possible to draw an accurate figure, but you can develop a rough idea. However, it is not necessary that more Watts in a PSU mean a better power supply. The quality of wires and other components plays an important role in determining the effectiveness of the PSU.
Try to find an optimum PSU that could suffice the needs of your components. However, don’t go too overkill and buy a PSU with 1000+ Watts only for the sake of wattage. Try to find a sweet spot, which would do the job well.
Efficiency Labels and Certificates
You need efficiency to minimize wastage of electricity. The higher the efficiency rating, the better the power management from the outlet. The cheaper PSUs won’t give you great efficiency only 60-70% of the total wattage. These types of units will draw the maximum power from the outlet every time. The 80+ certification system was created to understand the efficiency rating of each PSU.
|Percentage of Rated Load||10%||20%||50%||100%|
|80 Plus||–||80%||80%||80%/ PFC .90|
|80 Plus Bronze||–||82%||85% / PFC .90||82%|
|80 Plus Silver||–||85%||88%/ PFC .90||85%|
|80 Plus Gold||–||87%||90%/ PFC .90||87%|
|80 Plus Platinum||–||90%||92%/ PFC .95||89%|
|80 Plus||90%||92%/ PFC. 95||94%||90%|
Cooling is very important to keep the temperatures down under control. Every average PSUs have a big 12cm exhaust fan that keeps a flow of air and makes the component cool. However, you do not want something that creates a lot of noise. A quality PSU manufacturer will keep this into the mind and use high-quality materials on their PSUs. A PSU with automatic fan control is good to minimize the noise since it only powers up the fan when temperatures are going high.
Number of Connectors
When you build a PC, you might not upgrade it to the max in the first place. You might be saving money for future upgrades. However, it is important to ensure that your PSU has sufficient extra connectors for future upgrades. You need at least 4 SATA connectors for DVD drives, hard drives, and solid-state drives. However, going for something with more SATA connectors means great upgradability.
If you are building a gaming PC or a PC for content creation, then you might need a PSU with a 4+4 pin CPU power connector instead of the traditional 4 pin PC connector. Make sure that your PSU has the six-pin connector for the graphics card. This is important for graphics cards to get additional power. Modular PSUs are also available in the market. It makes less clutter and gives you more space inside the PC case. The wire management becomes easier and airflow with such PSUs.
Size of the PSU
The majority of the people think that they all come in a standard size. However, this is not true since there are size differences between the units. You don’t need to worry if you are using an ATX case for the build. If you plan to go for a smaller form factor, then you might need a specialized power supply for your compact build.
Guarantee and Warranty
When you spend a good amount of money on hardware, you want it to last long. Warranties and Guarantees are the best way to ensure a long life of PC components. PSUs from the best brands will give you 3 or 5 years of warranties.
If you are new to PC building, then it is highly recommended to take help from an experienced person or take help from the manual provided with the PSU.