A computer system consists of different components which are essential to make it work. There is no fixed price of a computer system and that is its major advantage. A computer system can cost as low as $200 to as high as $10,000. You have so much freedom on which components to choose that sometimes it gets confusing. Power supply is an essential part of a computer system because it supplies power to the whole system. Many users tend to ignore the importance of power supply and do not spend on a quality model. You can find quality computer power supplies(PSU) and other computer parts at supercs.com.au. Today, we will discuss different types of power supplies to enlighten our readers on their importance and features.
Industrial/Business PCs use different power supplies compared to consumer and gaming PCs. Business PCs require a long lasting power supply because companies do not upgrade their systems for almost a decade. Server PCs use high power PSUs because they run 24/7 throughout the year. The main variations are in the consumer market because there are different kinds of users.
An average consumer who use his/her PC for general work such as browsing the web, productivity work and social media platform will only need an entry level power supply. Gamers on the other hand need more diversified power supplies depending on their requirement. There are dozens of manufacturers for power supplies but not all of them are good. A power supply is distinguished by the components the manufacturer has used in its development.
FSP, Seasonic, Corsair, Cooler Master, Be Quiet!, Thermaltake, EVGA and Xigmatek are some of the renowned PSU manufacturers. The most highly rated manufacturers are Seasonic, Be Quiet! And Corsair. These manufacturers develop high quality power supplies which last for a long time without risking damage to your PC components.
Power Supplies range from 300W to 1500W and feature different kinds of protections such as Over Voltage protection, Surge Protection, Over heat protection and so on. The more protections a PSU has the better it is. Secondly, some PSUs come with a single +12v rail and some with multiple +12v rail. A single +12v power supply is often recommended because it supplies stable power to your graphics even when overclocked and under load whereas multi-rail setups have their own advantages and disadvantages. Multi-rail PSUs do not stress a single rail and spread the load amongst different rails. The issue with multi-rails is that they have limited power available so high-end GPUs especially dual-GPU graphics card can cause issues with multi-rail PSU.
Secondly, another most important aspect in a PSU is its efficiency. Power supplies come with different efficiency certifications. It is extremely important to check for the 80+ certifications of a power supply because the better the rating the better the built of the PSU. Below you can find a complete table on 80+ efficiency:
|80+ Test Type||115V internal non-redundant||230V internal redundant|
|% of rated load||10%||20%||50%||100%||10%||20%||50%||100%|
For an average consumer a PSU with 80+ bronze rating is an ideal solution but gamers with a moderate gaming system should look in to 80+ Gold power supplies. High-end gaming systems with multi-GPU configurations should use 80+ Platinum certified PSUs. This means that capacitors, MOSFETS, heatsinks and other components in the power supply will be of the best quality and ensure longevity and reliability.
These were the technical bits of a computer power supply, let’s consider the aesthetics. Enthusiasts not only spend money on the components but also keep in mind the overall aesthetics of their rigs. They need a good attractive case with the best features such as side windows, fan controllers, lights and much more.
Power supplies also play a big part in aesthetics and convenience. Previously, all the cables were soldered on the circuit board so it was difficult to route the cables in the casing plus it created a clustered inside the casing which looks really bad. Manufactures now develop semi-modular and modular power supplies.
Semi-modular power supplies have the main cable soldered on the board such as 24-pin ATX motherboard cable, 8-pin EPS CPU cable and PCIe cables. Rest of the cables are modular so users can just use the ones which they need and keep the rest in the box for future use. This gives more versatility in the usage and gives a clean look inside the PC especially when you have a side panel window.
Fully modular power supplies have all the cables are separate from the circuit board. Users can connect only those cables which are needed for their system while keep the rest safe for future upgrades or use. This makes it easier to route cables inside the case and you do not need to band the unused cables and hide them. Modular power supplies are expensive compared to standard power supplies but most high-end PSUs starting from 600W above come in modular styles.
It is advisable never to cheap out on a PSU or other computer parts because if something goes wrong it can hurt your system. You will end up losing hundreds of dollars of components compared to saving $50 or so. Always buy a power supply with higher output rating compared to your needs so you have room for future upgrades. Secondly, when there is wattage available in the PSU it means that it will not run at its full capacity which results in less heat output and longevity. You should have at least 30% cushion between your system needs and power supply output.