So I'm putting together a new system in the next month or so and I'm needing to get advice on a PSU, including how many watts/amps I need.
Here are the planned components:
1. OCed Core 2 Duo (I'm thinking of either a E4500 or E6750...depending on what the prices are when I buy the CPU and how much I want to OC)
2. 8600GT or 8800GT video card (depends if I want a gaming system or not)
3. 2x2GB Crucial Ballistix RAM
4. Gigabyte P35 MOBO
5. DVD Burner
6. Floppy Drive/Card Reader Combo
7. TV Card
8. 2 SATA Hard drives
In addition to the above I'm probably going to add a 3rd e-SATA drive, maybe a wirless NIC card, and I'd like some room to upgrade later on if I want a quad core CPU once more programs actually use 4 cores. I also may add a sound card too.
Thanks for all the help you can be. I've thought about Antec or Corsair. I'd like a PSU that's as cheap as possible--but I obviously want a good one. Is 500W-550W enough for this system and leaving enough to upgrade in the future or should I opt for 600W-650W PSU?
I'd go with at least the Corsair vx550w PSU that you linked from Buy.com. It has 41A on the 12V rail and will run any single GPU solution out there. It has a 5 yr. warranty and is pretty well equipped. You could go for a PCP&C 610w Silencer, but it's at $110 at Newegg, so don't know if that is out of your price range or not. I like Antec/Corsair/PCP&C/FSP PSU's as long as they are 80%+ efficient. You could probably be fine on a Antec 430W Earthwatts PSU, but to leave more room for upgrades I'd at least go with the Corsair vx550w PSU.
It's a marketing term. From what I remember reading the seperated 12V rails were/are supposed to make the PSU safer, because the power is split up (in theory). Some manufacturers list their PSU's having 2 or more rails, but in actuality they only have 1 rail. Generally speaking 1 rail systems are just as good as multiple rail PSU's. I don't know where the link is, but I've seen some definative information about this. In reality it doesn't make much difference for the average user.