Help w/ PSU upgrade in old machine, compatability issues?

Hi all,
I have an old Dell 4600 that I am looking at replacing the agp video card in. It has the stock 250w psu. I have added a few goodies to the machine so its not stock anymore - ASUS N6600, 2G RAM, 160G HD, 2nd 80G HD, Firewire card, Processor Fan, DVD Burner.
I am guessing the psu is maxed. If I am going to replace the vid card with a more power hungry unit, could I also replace the psu with a unit that works in the Dell and that I could also use down the road when I build a new pc in the summer? My main thought here is if the old Dell 4600 has some weird mobo power requirement or config that wont work with an aftermarket psu.

Thanks!
17 answers Last reply
More about help upgrade machine compatability issues
  1. Any standard ATX psu with a 20 or 20+4 pin mb connector will work.
  2. Okay, thanks!
    I have heard about Dell mobo's having weird connectors or something, couldnt find it again, was at work and unable to look on my pc, so thanks.
  3. Dell changed thier evil non standard ATX pinout when the P4 was introduced.
  4. dell sucks
  5. on your mobo if it is old like 2000-2002 it mite use a -5v on the 20-24 pin connector please check this site as new ps
    now dont use this -5v but you can still get them but you wont be able to use on next build.
    http://www.antec.com/us/support_faqs.php?FAQno=13 question #9
  6. tlmck said:
    Here is an excellent quality replacement. https://shop.pcpower.com/power-supply/silencer-410-dell-2.html


    Agree with the quality, but for that kind of money, he could do better
    http://www.buy.com/prod/corsair-520w-sli-certified-modular-atx-power-supply/q/loc/101/203270716.html
    With something like this he'd have a good base for the build he's planning.
  7. Okay, I have a 20 pin connector with 19 wires. One pin is empty, so I am up to modern standards right?

    If I have to replace the psu in order to run a different vid card, I wish to get one that I could use in a future upgrade.
    I was looking at these (as well as your suggestions) hopefully in this price range (which are probably tier3).
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817151040
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817153052
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817256037

    In lieu of a new psu, I also have thought of using a small power supply I salvaged from a minicube to power some of the components like the HD's, floppy, and the optical drives. It is a Compaq 185w unit. Is this possible, or would I be asking for disaster?
  8. Here's the deal of the day on PSU - Antec Earthwatts 500W - an excellent, energy efficient unit, for only $50AR - with free shipping.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371007
  9. foomangoo said:
    Okay, I have a 20 pin connector with 19 wires. One pin is empty, so I am up to modern standards right?

    That would be the unneccessary -5v line that fleakiller made mention of.
    rockyjohn has made a good recommendation, but it's kind of lite on the +12v, if you shared what kind of system upgrade you will be making, it would be easier to give you psu recommendations.
  10. For this system I am just adding a new vid card, its agp from current asus n6600 to probably a 7600gs or hd2600xt.

    My new system build will be this summer, budget gaming rig type - $700-800, probably looking at e6750, p35, 2g ddr2 800, 8800gt or according to prices this summer maybe a quad core setup. Never sure what $ new stuff is coming out....

    I am trying to get this old Dell to last till then, with a little video upgrade. If I could use the stock 250w psu I would, but I have a doubt about that. If I have to get a psu to update the vid card then I would like to use it on the future build, but still dont want to shell out too much cash right now, i am pretty strapped..... but trying to make this work.
  11. oops
  12. foomangoo said:
    For this system I am just adding a new vid card, its agp from current asus n6600 to probably a 7600gs or hd2600xt

    7600 GS uses the same power as a 6600 and wouldn't need a power upgrade.
  13. delluser1 said:
    rockyjohn has made a good recommendation, but it's kind of lite on the +12v


    The Earthwatts 500 has 34 amps on the two 12V rails, which should be more than adequate for the system the poster identified - and for most systems unless he goes SLI. It is also very efficient (80+ certified) and fairly quiet and comes with a three year manufacturer's warranty.
  14. I don't know if you're going to use this in SLI later but IMHO Ultra builds some of the best P/S in the industry.
    They're very power efficient and run cool.
    If you want upgradability, lifetime waranty at a very good price then look into Ultra.
    From reading your post I put a link to what would be a great choice for what you're looking for.
    http://biz.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=1273334&Sku=ULT31843
  15. rockyjohn said:
    The Earthwatts 500 has 34 amps on the two 12V rails, which should be more than adequate for the system the poster identified - and for most systems unless he goes SLI. It is also very efficient (80+ certified) and fairly quiet and comes with a three year manufacturer's warranty.


    I did say it was a good recommendation rockyjohn, then asked him what he would be building because if he wanted to go SLI or Crossfire he would most likely need more.
  16. Thanks guys!
    I found a 7600GS 256MB for $45, so I am gonna pop that in the old Dell and see what happens. If it squirrels out I will upgrade the psu. Hopefully I can pass this rig down to the kiddies this summer after I build a new system.
    Thanks for all the help!
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