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How much wattage do I need for my build?

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  • Power Supplies
  • Power Consumption
  • Components
Last response: in Components
March 21, 2014 11:20:10 AM

I just bought a used Palit GTX 280 and I am in search of a power supply for my build. I have an Intel Q6600 oced to 3ghz (pin mod oc) on a dell motherboard, 6gb of ddr2 (4 sticks), 1 5400 rpm hdd (soon to add an ssd), a DVD-ROM for install and anything I may need to read off and on. (Can remove if I need to in order to stay in budget) and I have a card reader installed. I have 3 fans including the cpu heatsink's fan (will be upgrading to a dual fan heatsink, so 4 later) and I regularly use around 4-5 USB devices at a time. My budget is low, so that is my worry. What PSU is good for a low budget, and what wattage? Thanks in advance! PS: I would like to SLI in the future, but not necessary now. If a PSU with enough wattage for SLI is in my budget, please let me know!

More about : wattage build

a b ) Power supply
March 21, 2014 11:48:44 AM

You did not tell us your budget. GTX 280 is not very efficient. I've seen many articles stating 1000W for sli.
This means a quality power supply - $300-400. You would be better off buying a newer gpu that does not need so much power.
-Bruce
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March 21, 2014 11:50:15 AM

dish_moose said:
You did not tell us your budget. GTX 280 is not very efficient. I've seen many articles stating 1000W for sli.
This means a quality power supply - $300-400. You would be better off buying a newer gpu that does not need so much power.
-Bruce


Oh, right. My bad. I have a budget of around $60-$80. SLI is not really required, but would be a nice addition. I already have the gpu purchased and will be shipping soon, so I want to get it ready to go. I only have around $200 to spend, including the gpu and I got the gpu at $50 xD.
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Related resources
March 23, 2014 3:16:12 PM

I just used their calc to estimate something, as I found an aweessomme deal on 2 6870s. I have a 530w raidmax psu in my brother's computer, and want to use this to test it. I want to make sure this is safe before I do it. He has an FX-6300, 2 ddr3 2000mhz dimms, a dvd+rw, 1 7200 rpm drive, 1 ssd, 3 fans, and the cpu fan. He uses 7 usb devices at a time. Is this a safe test, or should I just test one card at a time? (The outervision calc said minimum 466, recommended 516.)
http://www.legitreviews.com/amd-radeon-hd-6850-and-6870... Shows a full system consumption of 449watts.
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March 23, 2014 10:30:35 PM

Im assuming that your brother is using integrated motherboard graphics , which if so, makes using that PSU like 10x more dangerous. The 6300 only pulls around 250 watts total on its own with integrated graphics so I doubt it would be a good idea to test it with that PSU.

I'd recommend this PSU ---------> http://products.ncix.com/detail/thermaltake-smart-750w-...

Its literally only $5 above your budget and its also 80 + bronze certified so its not one of those cheap junk PSU's.

If you ARE going to test it with that raidmax PSU make sure you're extra careful and pull the plug if you notice any instability or it starts to make noise. You dont wanna be in that situation lol.
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a b ) Power supply
March 24, 2014 4:25:45 AM

^ you can't be too careful - if/when there is a problem - too late.
-Bruce
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March 24, 2014 5:25:13 PM

HomeSkillenSlice said:
Im assuming that your brother is using integrated motherboard graphics , which if so, makes using that PSU like 10x more dangerous. The 6300 only pulls around 250 watts total on its own with integrated graphics so I doubt it would be a good idea to test it with that PSU.

I'd recommend this PSU ---------> http://products.ncix.com/detail/thermaltake-smart-750w-...

Its literally only $5 above your budget and its also 80 + bronze certified so its not one of those cheap junk PSU's.

If you ARE going to test it with that raidmax PSU make sure you're extra careful and pull the plug if you notice any instability or it starts to make noise. You dont wanna be in that situation lol.


Oh, no. He uses an Asus GTX 560 Ti. He did have a Xigamatek 600w psu, but we just had an accident with my Radeon 5850 and the PCIE adapters that came with his card. Still no response from them and I'm extremely impatient. Anyways, that psu does look nice. And I also figured that is how I'd do it. If I saw any sign it was going wonky, jerk that plug and let it sit for a while. If it does overload for a small period, it should continue to work fine, right? Or should I just test them separately for safety reasons? Thanks for being patient and helpful, guys! Also, if you guys could be more helpful, I can give my exact build, and his exact build, as much as possible.
Edit: No, his mobo doesn't have integrated graphics.
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Best solution

March 25, 2014 1:53:38 AM

It'll work fine. Just make sure that if the PSU starts making really loud noises or the computer starts to get unstable/slow then make sure u pull the plug, its a sign that the PSU cant handle the load.

General guideline :

- computer is slow/unstable, just shut it down like normal to prevent data loss or to prevent from getting ur hard drive messed up
- computers PSU starts making loud noises, GET THE F*** UP AND RUUNN!! Plug that s*** right out lol, and quickly, dont delay it.

If you dont mind, then yea I would definately recommend testing the 6870s one at a time. No use in rushing it. I also want to quickly add that the GTX 280 that you picked up is roughly equivalent to something like an HD 7770. The only difference however is that the HD 7770 uses literally half the power. You probably would have saved yourself the headache if you just bought a used 7770 for like $70/$80 because then you wouldn't have had to worry about the PS. Just my 2 cents, be weary of these things :) 
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a b ) Power supply
March 25, 2014 4:32:47 AM

Get a quality psu from the start - using a psu of questionable quality and listening for signs of trouble and unplugging is BAD ADVICE!!!.
-Bruce
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March 25, 2014 6:21:49 AM

Logan weinant said:
HomeSkillenSlice said:
Im assuming that your brother is using integrated motherboard graphics , which if so, makes using that PSU like 10x more dangerous. The 6300 only pulls around 250 watts total on its own with integrated graphics so I doubt it would be a good idea to test it with that PSU.

I'd recommend this PSU ---------> http://products.ncix.com/detail/thermaltake-smart-750w-...

Its literally only $5 above your budget and its also 80 + bronze certified so its not one of those cheap junk PSU's.

If you ARE going to test it with that raidmax PSU make sure you're extra careful and pull the plug if you notice any instability or it starts to make noise. You dont wanna be in that situation lol.


Oh, no. He uses an Asus GTX 560 Ti. He did have a Xigamatek 600w psu, but we just had an accident with my Radeon 5850 and the PCIE adapters that came with his card. Still no response from them and I'm extremely impatient. Anyways, that psu does look nice. And I also figured that is how I'd do it. If I saw any sign it was going wonky, jerk that plug and let it sit for a while. If it does overload for a small period, it should continue to work fine, right? Or should I just test them separately for safety reasons? Thanks for being patient and helpful, guys! Also, if you guys could be more helpful, I can give my exact build, and his exact build, as much as possible.
Edit: No, his mobo doesn't have integrated graphics.


HomeSkillenSlice said:
It'll work fine. Just make sure that if the PSU starts making really loud noises or the computer starts to get unstable/slow then make sure u pull the plug, its a sign that the PSU cant handle the load.

General guideline :

- computer is slow/unstable, just shut it down like normal to prevent data loss or to prevent from getting ur hard drive messed up
- computers PSU starts making loud noises, GET THE F*** UP AND RUUNN!! Plug that s*** right out lol, and quickly, dont delay it.

If you dont mind, then yea I would definately recommend testing the 6870s one at a time. No use in rushing it. I also want to quickly add that the GTX 280 that you picked up is roughly equivalent to something like an HD 7770. The only difference however is that the HD 7770 uses literally half the power. You probably would have saved yourself the headache if you just bought a used 7770 for like $70/$80 because then you wouldn't have had to worry about the PS. Just my 2 cents, be weary of these things :) 


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March 25, 2014 6:24:27 AM

HomeSkillenSlice said:
It'll work fine. Just make sure that if the PSU starts making really loud noises or the computer starts to get unstable/slow then make sure u pull the plug, its a sign that the PSU cant handle the load.

General guideline :

- computer is slow/unstable, just shut it down like normal to prevent data loss or to prevent from getting ur hard drive messed up
- computers PSU starts making loud noises, GET THE F*** UP AND RUUNN!! Plug that s*** right out lol, and quickly, dont delay it.

If you dont mind, then yea I would definately recommend testing the 6870s one at a time. No use in rushing it. I also want to quickly add that the GTX 280 that you picked up is roughly equivalent to something like an HD 7770. The only difference however is that the HD 7770 uses literally half the power. You probably would have saved yourself the headache if you just bought a used 7770 for like $70/$80 because then you wouldn't have had to worry about the PS. Just my 2 cents, be weary of these things :) 

Thanks for your help, guys! I'll be testing the cards one at a time, then selling one to buy my build a good PSU. My personal build can't use xfire unless I get a new mobo xD. Again, thanks!
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March 25, 2014 5:21:45 PM

dish_moose said:
Get a quality psu from the start - using a psu of questionable quality and listening for signs of trouble and unplugging is BAD ADVICE!!!.
-Bruce


Dish_moose , it is never a good idea to use a PSU from a questionable brand but not everyone is made of money to buy a new one lol. Besides, he said he ran it with a 560ti which does use a fair bit of power, even more then a 6870 I think. Not sure. But as long as theirs no crossfiring going on its relatively safe.
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a b ) Power supply
March 30, 2014 6:00:40 AM

^ I know not everybody has deep pockets but using a RAIDMAX psu is just asking for trouble. There are more horror stories about that brand. The problem with using a crappy psu is you run the risk of damaging your other components.
-Bruce
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