Is 1000 watts really insufficient?

Hello dear reader!
I've during the last 2 years burned my way through 3 PSUs.
1 fractal newton 1000W 80+ platinum.
2 different Seasonic 1050W SnowSilent 80+ Platinum.
All were RMA'ed and I got a full refund.
I contacted Seasonic and they confirmed that my system should not require a more powerfull PSU.
They did an estimate of round 900 watts.

Thhe following is my setup and seasonics estimate:

MB: MSI Z97 M-Power = ~50W max.
CPU: 4690K @ 4,5Ghz Core / 4,0Ghz Cache 1,220V = Didn't find any accurate info, would say 100 to 125W max.
CPU Cooler: Fractal kelvin AiO 2x 120mm Noctua Industriel fans (Liquid) =~6W for the fans, ~15-20W for the pump
GPU: 2x MSI R9 290X Lightning @ 1100Mhz Core / 5200Mhz Memory (+10% Max power) = Average is around 295W and you have some peak (benchmark or gaming) >350W. This is per unit.
Fans 3x 140mm Corsair Case fans (2 With LED) = ~9-10W for the fans
HDD/SSD: 1x 5400 RPM 800Gb Western digital / 1x Samsung Evo 850 256Gb SSD = 15W max for HDD, 5W max for SSD.
Extra: 1x 2 TB Seagate External HDD = 15W max.

So my question is, should i buy a new -seasonic @ 1050 watts but this time a Prime 80+ Titanium or should i go for a 1200 watts Prime 80+ Platinum?

Is 1000 watts insufficient, and the reason they malfunction?
Or is it just incredibly bad luck with PSUs?
29 answers Last reply
More about 1000 watts insufficient
  1. My son has a very close setup to yours. 4690K (NOT OC'd) on an AsRock Z97Pro, Dual R9 390, 256SSD and 512M.2 Drives, 6 system fans. I installed a Corsair 750W supply and he has had ZERO issues for the past year. I am not sure why 1000W wouldn't be able to handle what you have.
  2. SlitelyOff said:
    My son has a very close setup to yours. 4690K (NOT OC'd) on an AsRock Z97Pro, Dual R9 390, 256SSD and 512M.2 Drives, 6 system fans. I installed a Corsair 750W supply and he has had ZERO issues for the past year. I am not sure why 1000W wouldn't be able to handle what you have.

    Bear in mind that my entire rig is OC'ed and that the 290X is a bit more powerhungry than the 390.
    This said i agree that 1000W seems excessive. However if 1000W is enough then I must be really unlucky!
  3. That is certainly strange, could be random failures. But the consistency points to another problem. I would check the circuit the system is plugged into and any other appliances on that circuit.

    Try getting a UPS power conditioner, could just be dirty from the power company.

    A bigger supply won't hurt with that much hardware in the system.
  4. it depends on what the problem you are getting. having a 100 watt psu does not help if something is being powered has a 75 watt power limit.

    for example, a pci/e slot on the motherboard. if it goes over its power limit, the motherboard logic will reset the CPU and your machine will reboot with a bugcheck 0x124 if you have a crappy motherboard, the PCI/e slot might melt or catch fire.

    it would also depend on the design of the PSU single rail designs cost more but can allow more power to be used on the connection that needs the power. multi rail designs will have limits on each power lead.

    you should also check the power that is coming into the PSU, IE I have seen people have cheap power strips that cause problems. I have seen people who plugged in their computer on the same circuit that had a electric motor on it. In this case every time the refrigerator kicked on while he was gaming his CPU would reset.


    DOOMaddict said:
    Hello dear reader!
    I've during the last 2 years burned my way through 3 PSUs.
    1 fractal newton 1000W 80+ platinum.
    2 different Seasonic 1050W SnowSilent 80+ Platinum.
    All were RMA'ed and I got a full refund.
    I contacted Seasonic and they confirmed that my system should not require a more powerfull PSU.
    They did an estimate of round 900 watts.

    Thhe following is my setup and seasonics estimate:

    MB: MSI Z97 M-Power = ~50W max.
    CPU: 4690K @ 4,5Ghz Core / 4,0Ghz Cache 1,220V = Didn't find any accurate info, would say 100 to 125W max.
    CPU Cooler: Fractal kelvin AiO 2x 120mm Noctua Industriel fans (Liquid) =~6W for the fans, ~15-20W for the pump
    GPU: 2x MSI R9 290X Lightning @ 1100Mhz Core / 5200Mhz Memory (+10% Max power) = Average is around 295W and you have some peak (benchmark or gaming) >350W. This is per unit.
    Fans 3x 140mm Corsair Case fans (2 With LED) = ~9-10W for the fans
    HDD/SSD: 1x 5400 RPM 800Gb Western digital / 1x Samsung Evo 850 256Gb SSD = 15W max for HDD, 5W max for SSD.
    Extra: 1x 2 TB Seagate External HDD = 15W max.

    So my question is, should i buy a new -seasonic @ 1050 watts but this time a Prime 80+ Titanium or should i go for a 1200 watts Prime 80+ Platinum?

    Is 1000 watts insufficient, and the reason they malfunction?
    Or is it just incredibly bad luck with PSUs?
  5. Do you have a quality surge protector? IE ~30 bucks?
  6. unless you're going to be running a 2- 3 GPU SLI/Crossfire setup then you do not need a 1000W PSU
  7. Seasonic Silent Snow is a single rail design with 1044 W on the 12V rail, so not really an issue there.

    Power supply failures have little to do with an excess of power.

    The only real way to know if the system is exceeding the power supplies specifications would be to slap current meter in series with the the 12V rail. Not something a typical person can do safely, and a decent meter/oscilloscope is required.
  8. it depends on what the problem you are getting. having a 100 watt psu does not help if something is being powered has a 75 watt power limit.

    for example, a pci/e slot on the motherboard. if it goes over its power limit, the motherboard logic will reset the CPU and your machine will reboot with a bugcheck 0x124 if you have a crappy motherboard, the PCI/e slot might melt or catch fire.

    it would also depend on the design of the PSU single rail designs cost more but can allow more power to be used on the connection that needs the power. multi rail designs will have limits on each power lead.

    Every time was a DIFFERENT issue. Firstly the fractal PSU. With more than avarage load the entire system rebooted.
    Second psu seasonic, I could not power on the system without first wiggling the 230V input plug in the back of the PSU. (Wierd)
    Third time around Seasonic again, With High loads aka Benchmarks static sound would appear especially with scene changes in Unigien Heaven. The static sounds were followed by severe drop in frames per second. However the static sounds would also appear sometimes when scrolling up and down i a web browser.

    I do bellive that the seasonics are a single powerful12V rail.
  9. ya, in my experience ive built computers for people before where it works fine for 2 years in one house with a 80+gold psu then they move to another and boom, they blow psu's all the time. i agree with a line conditioner and a uninteruptable power supply setup.
  10. Eximo said:
    Seasonic Silent Snow is a single rail design with 1044 W on the 12V rail, so not really an issue there.

    Power supply failures have little to do with an excess of power.

    The only real way to know if the system is exceeding the power supplies specifications would be to slap current meter in series with the the 12V rail. Not something a typical person can do safely, and a decent meter/oscilloscope is required.


    Yes I thought so myself. I am an electrical engineer and electrican by trade and education, so I could do this safely. But I was hoping that I could avoid getting hold of a Watt-meter.
  11. Kurz said:
    Do you have a quality surge protector? IE ~30 bucks?

    No I do not.
  12. Eximo said:
    That is certainly strange, could be random failures. But the consistency points to another problem. I would check the circuit the system is plugged into and any other appliances on that circuit.

    Try getting a UPS power conditioner, could just be dirty from the power company.

    A bigger supply won't hurt with that much hardware in the system.

    I will try and get one even though I do not think this is the issue, the power here should be rather stable.
  13. So it seems people agree that it is not because the PSU is too small.
  14. captaincharisma said:
    unless you're going to be running a 2- 3 GPU SLI/Crossfire setup then you do not need a 1000W PSU


    I AM running 2x CrossfireX MSI R9 290X Lightning @ 1100Mhz Core / 5200Mhz Memory (+10% Max power)
  15. man stop wasting your money ... upgrade to GTX 1080 and you wont need that huge power supply ever again .. and will have the same performance of your dual cards .. if not better , because it is a single card.

    dont waste your money on large PSU .. sell your cards and get GTX1080 or GTX 1080 ti , for the same price you are paying for expensive Powersupply + sold cards
  16. Tech_TTT said:
    man stop wasting your money ... upgrade to GTX 1080 and you wont need that huge power supply ever again .. and will have the same performance of your dual cards .. if not better , because it is a single card.

    dont waste your money on large PSU .. sell your cards and get GTX1080 or GTX 1080 ti , for the same price you are paying for expensive Powersupply + sold cards


    Yea, thought about it. However I recently bought a 27" 1440P 144HZ Freesync monitor :S
  17. DOOMaddict said:
    Tech_TTT said:
    man stop wasting your money ... upgrade to GTX 1080 and you wont need that huge power supply ever again .. and will have the same performance of your dual cards .. if not better , because it is a single card.

    dont waste your money on large PSU .. sell your cards and get GTX1080 or GTX 1080 ti , for the same price you are paying for expensive Powersupply + sold cards


    Yea, thought about it. However I recently bought a 27" 1440P 144HZ Freesync monitor :S


    Okay get the AMD Vega then when it is soon to be released, it is rumured to be the speed of GTX 1080 and cheaper than GTX 1080 ... you are wasting alot of energy and heat for nothing .
  18. Tech_TTT said:
    DOOMaddict said:
    Tech_TTT said:
    man stop wasting your money ... upgrade to GTX 1080 and you wont need that huge power supply ever again .. and will have the same performance of your dual cards .. if not better , because it is a single card.

    dont waste your money on large PSU .. sell your cards and get GTX1080 or GTX 1080 ti , for the same price you are paying for expensive Powersupply + sold cards


    Yea, thought about it. However I recently bought a 27" 1440P 144HZ Freesync monitor :S


    Okay get the AMD Vega then when it is soon to be released, it is rumured to be the speed of GTX 1080 and cheaper than GTX 1080 ... you are wasting alot of energy and heat for nothing .


    You know what! I actually agree 100% with you. I do think that is the way I'll go. However that leaves me without a PC untill then.
  19. you can have a motherboard sound driver conflict with a GPU sound driver and get lockups and that produce sounds.
    or no sound and just a lock up depending on which sound device actually has speakers connected to it.

    I have a seasonic power supply, they used to be pretty good but these type of companies get sold so I have to research the brands every few years. Generally, the low cost PSU makers buy out the high end PSU makers.
    There is a lot of money in low quality PSU.

    Anonymous said:
    it depends on what the problem you are getting. having a 100 watt psu does not help if something is being powered has a 75 watt power limit.

    for example, a pci/e slot on the motherboard. if it goes over its power limit, the motherboard logic will reset the CPU and your machine will reboot with a bugcheck 0x124 if you have a crappy motherboard, the PCI/e slot might melt or catch fire.

    it would also depend on the design of the PSU single rail designs cost more but can allow more power to be used on the connection that needs the power. multi rail designs will have limits on each power lead.

    Every time was a DIFFERENT issue. Firstly the fractal PSU. With more than avarage load the entire system rebooted.
    Second psu seasonic, I could not power on the system without first wiggling the 230V input plug in the back of the PSU. (Wierd)
    Third time around Seasonic again, With High loads aka Benchmarks static sound would appear especially with scene changes in Unigien Heaven. The static sounds were followed by severe drop in frames per second. However the static sounds would also appear sometimes when scrolling up and down i a web browser.

    I do bellive that the seasonics are a single powerful12V rail.
  20. DOOMaddict said:
    Tech_TTT said:
    DOOMaddict said:
    Tech_TTT said:
    man stop wasting your money ... upgrade to GTX 1080 and you wont need that huge power supply ever again .. and will have the same performance of your dual cards .. if not better , because it is a single card.

    dont waste your money on large PSU .. sell your cards and get GTX1080 or GTX 1080 ti , for the same price you are paying for expensive Powersupply + sold cards


    Yea, thought about it. However I recently bought a 27" 1440P 144HZ Freesync monitor :S


    Okay get the AMD Vega then when it is soon to be released, it is rumured to be the speed of GTX 1080 and cheaper than GTX 1080 ... you are wasting alot of energy and heat for nothing .


    You know what! I actually agree 100% with you. I do think that is the way I'll go. However that leaves me without a PC untill then.


    so what :) take a month or two vacation from PC gaming :)
  21. DOOMaddict said:
    Kurz said:
    Do you have a quality surge protector? IE ~30 bucks?

    No I do not.


    Well thats probably why you are going through PSU's all the time.
  22. Kurz said:
    DOOMaddict said:
    Kurz said:
    Do you have a quality surge protector? IE ~30 bucks?

    No I do not.


    Well thats probably why you are going through PSU's all the time.


    Okay I hear alot of talk about these surge protectors, UPS back-ups and power conditioners. Is this really nessesary? I live in Copenhagen the captial of Denmark in Scandinavia. Our grid is rather stable and under strict regulation when it comes to power-factor and fluktuations. It seems to me that all these remidies are overkill. I mean we do not have small dropouts in power, we have a stable 3x400V/230V supply. The PSU itself have all manners of over voltage/current protections. What do you base the need for these external regulators on?
  23. Eximo said:
    That is certainly strange, could be random failures. But the consistency points to another problem. I would check the circuit the system is plugged into and any other appliances on that circuit.

    Try getting a UPS power conditioner, could just be dirty from the power company.

    A bigger supply won't hurt with that much hardware in the system.


    Okay I hear alot of talk about these surge protectors, UPS back-ups and power conditioners. Is this really nessesary? I live in Copenhagen the captial of Denmark in Scandinavia. Our grid is rather stable and under strict regulation when it comes to power-factor and fluktuations. It seems to me that all these remidies are overkill. I mean we do not have small dropouts in power, we have a stable 3x400V/230V supply. The PSU itself have all manners of over voltage/current protections. What do you base the need for these external regulators on?
  24. DOOMaddict said:
    The PSU itself have all manners of over voltage/current protections. What do you base the need for these external regulators on?

    These protections are on the low side, and mainly protect your PC components. They don't protect your PSU from voltage spikes or whatever coming in from the mains.
  25. Think about it, I've had the same powersupply for 5 + years. Seasonic 750X

    You went through 3 psus in two years.
    They are quality PSUs.

    I use a surge protector that costed me 30 usa Dollars.
    You didn't which might be the cause of this issue.

    Isn't $30 worth your time to try?
    I make that much in an hour. You probably spent Days of total time dealing with this current issue.

    Give it a shot.
  26. In my experience power supplies fail because a) Main power supply spikes/surges b) faulty manufacture c) component failure on the main board. In order of probability Main Power problems score the highest and now that capacitor problems have been dealt with main board failure the lowest.

    Surge protection is essential for all electronic devices. Any area that is fed by overhead lines can be subject to lightning strike which may cause a spike capable of blowing a power supply and there may be other disturbances generally caused by the power company doing load management.

    So ensure that you have surge protection and check the reviews for your power supply selection to ensure that they really can supply the power requirements on the voltage rails where you require it. A power supply rated at 1000w does not mean it can supply this at all voltages available.
  27. I did my own calculations on your setup:

    Video card power consumption in a xfire should run around 603 (from Guru3d review -- doesn't include OC)
    Processor 151 (4.6 OC data VIA Digital Storm -- you can use HWmon to actually get an idea)
    DDR4 about 3 watts per DIMM so lets say 10? (between 2 and 4 DIMMs)
    5 fans @ 5 watts == 25 (I just picked a power hungry fan to use CM jetflow 120)
    Nice high end board BTW... and you run a few hard drives (IE extra load) 45 to 80
    SSD 5
    HDD 30

    Sooo @ MAX you have 603 + 151 + 10 + 25 + 80 + 5 + 30 = 904

    I ran this by this calculator for a double check
    http://outervision.com/power-supply-calculator
    Assuming you have a couple USB devices it came out to 907 as a recommended PS

    1000 watt PS should be fine. If you're running a multi-threaded game with your video cards OC'd while running a backup across your disks though for 8 hours a day.... idk lol... Just joking, 1000 W seems like it's well spec'd for your build.

    If you're concerned about PS load run a stress test with something like Speed Fan or HWmonitor running and watch out for voltage dips or spikes. Assuming our arithmetic is correct, your problem probably is as others have mentioned:
    1) Dirty power -- it doesn't have to be from the company, your local wiring could have a problem.
    2) You have a component in your PC that is shorting or causing problems for your PS. I've seen drives, motherboards, and other components cause PS failures.
    3) You're extremely unlucky, and got 3 units that were failed at a faster rate than the typical MTBF (which can not be discounted as well, a non-zero chance is still a non-zero chance).

    My money is on 1 or 2 personally

    If you're curious about dirty power some basic information can be found here
    http://www.tesengineering.com/electrical-engineering-what-is-dirty-power/
    A surge protector may not be sufficient to account for all conditions

    sources: I've spent too much time as a PC builder, and I've also managed hardware vendor labs for too many years.....
  28. I have the exact same setup my dude, I was able to use both my 290x lightnings without oc on an evga 750w power supply before I switched to a 1200w and was able to oc. I can't imagine it's the amount of wattage that's the issue, to be honest it seems you just got a couple of bad units. Btw what case are you using to fit both of your lightning cards? I use a thermaltake x9 :D
  29. I used outervision as well, copied all your overclocks into it and cranked the CPU utilisation to 100% and it came out at 1060W so I think it is actually possibly you are pushing the PSU quite hard at times. That said there's a safety margin in that calculation and the only way you'd actually draw that much power is to use furmark and prime 95 at the same time, real world gaming would never do it.

    My personal take on surge protectors is they are virtually useless. They only protect against one particular situation that rarely happens in reality. Voltage sags are more likely in areas with bad power and lightning is beyond the capabilities of a home surge protector. If a local transformer malfunctions and sends a power spike your way they help, but that's the only time they are of use. A UPS is a lot better because it protects against sags and spikes, costs a lot more too and the batteries need replacing every few years. I've run protection free since the 90's and have yet to have a power spike damage anything.

    None of this is particularly helpful, just my musings on the subject.
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