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PSU for i7 / 4 HDDs / 2 Optical / SLI 580

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November 15, 2010 7:04:21 PM

Hi there,

I'm looking to build a new desktop to replace my 4 year old Core 2 system, mainly to make the move from Windows XP / DX9 to Windows 7 / DX 11, but i'm a little confused as to the best choice of PSU.

The system specs are as follows:

CPU: i7 950
RAM: 6GB DDR3 1333 (3x2GB)
MOBO: Asus P6D58-E
GPU: Geforce GTX 580 1.5GB
HDDS: Samsung F3 1TB + 2x Samsung F3 2TB
OPTICAL: LG Blu-Ray ROM + LG DVD/RW
CASE: Antec 900 "dustbox"

To summarise the system will operate 3 HDDs, 2 optical drives and a Geforce GTX 580, but i would like to eventually add an additional HDD and a second Geforce 580 to SLI.

My current desktop is running a corsair HX 1000W PSU: http://www.corsair.com/products/hx1000/default.aspx - would this PSU be sufficient?

I mainly purchased this in an act of desperation after two 850W PSU's blew attempting to power my current desktop (2x optical, 4x HDD, Geforce 280 GTX debut version). 1000W seems a little overkill but as two different 850W PSU's failed i decided to give it a try.

My first instict was to purchase the same PSU for my new system as it has been rock solid for two years, but i'm not sure if it has the required specifications to power it. I also noticed that Corsair have released their GS PSU range (Gaming Series), similarly priced with nearly identical specs. OCZ and XPower have also released some highly acclaimed PSU's since 2008.

If anyone could pelase advise me as to what sort of PSU spec would effortlessly cope with a stock i7 CPU, stock 6GB DDR3 1333, 4x HDDs, 2x optical drives and SLI 580's i would really appreciate it.

Thanks for your time in helping out a newbie :) 

-Zal

a b ) Power supply
November 15, 2010 7:25:55 PM

Hello Zalgradis, Welcome to THW.

This is a great tool you can use to calculate the power your PC will need. Antec Power Supply Calculator You just enter your PC specs and it gives you a good estimate on how much power your PSU will need to provide. From entering your specs I would say 850w to 1000w will do the job nicely.

One thing is that the Geforce GTX 580 1.5GB is not included in the PSU calculators yet. Here is a review saying the power use on full load is about 363w(slightly lower than the GTX 480) so you could use the GTX 480 in the Calculator to give you a good idea. You may also want to check out this link: GTX 580 SLI and read up on the power required to run these GPU's in SLI.

GTX580 SLI Total System Power Use(read article above for sys. specs) 777w in Futurmark(Higest loading your PC will ever see) and 620w in Crysis(Shows a realistic power use while gaming)

As for you current PSU, Corsair HX 1000W, that has enough power to keep a very high end PC running, it has TON of power available and will most certainly keep your PC going even with SLI GTX 580.

I doubt that the two 850w PSU that failed were becasue of lack of power as well. If buying Corsair I would say to stick with thier HX series or Professional Series, another good brand is Seasonic as Corsair and many other brands are actually manufactured by them.
a c 91 ) Power supply
November 15, 2010 11:20:19 PM

All that hardware to go inside an Antec 900.! I don't like the sound of it.. You'll most probably run into space issues.. Also, the cable management features of that case are not that exciting.. You might turn up one big mess inside if you are not careful/experienced.. As for the power supply, chief has already added enough good points.. But yeah, I won't take the risk with a 850W unit on a GTX 580 SLI setup and a nicely overclocked i7 along with all those extra peripherals.. Better opt for (budget permitting) the Corsair AX 1200 in that case..
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a b ) Power supply
November 15, 2010 11:53:39 PM

Good looking out Emperus,

I didnt even consider the case, definatly should go to a full tower with all that equipment, for the sake of cable management and airflow to your parts, if your budget will allow you to, or make it a future upgrade.

And you are also probably right about the 850w, that is calling it a bit close with only ~50w of headroom. With the capacitor aging(which I do not understand why it adds ~150w) Antec recommends 950w PSU, is that a reliable number Emperus? I just dont see that a PSU will loss that much performance over time.

But with that said a 1000w may even be calling it close as well and the need for 1200w is very possible.
a c 91 ) Power supply
November 16, 2010 1:21:24 AM

In theory actually, an 850W unit should do it.. But apparently, theories have a bad habit of going wrong at the least expected moments.. 950W sounds good but there are not many units around in that range.. Now comparing the newegg prices, the Corsair HX 1000 is available for around 222$ including shipping charges.. I for one won't hesitate to pay an extra 50$ here to grab the 80 plus gold certified Corsair AX 1200.. It is currently the highest rated enthusiast PSU and the price is, IMO, quite subtle for a unit of that quality.. Another option could be the ABS Majesty Series MJ1100-M which seems to be treated with quite a lot of respect.. I don't have much info on it though.. The pricing on that unit is actually quite good giving a healthy amount of saving over the Corsair option(s) to invest towards getting a better case..
November 16, 2010 12:45:38 PM

Thank you very much for your replies thechief73 and Emperus.

I'll look at both the Corsair HX 1000W and AX 1200W, but i may lean towards the AX 1200W as it is only £40 cheaper (~70$ due to the weak GBP :( ) but newer. though it is worth bearing in mind that i will be starting with one GPU and won't plan to upgrade to SLI for a good year or more :( 

I just used the Antec PSUc alculator thechief73 posted and it gave me a power requirement of 858W (single socket CPU selected), 1149W with SLI :( 

Looks like i'll be shelling out a rediculous amount again for this sytem ><

Regarding the Antec 900; i currently use that case with 4 HDDs, 2 opticals and a single card and have not run into any problems. I did have to cabletie pretty much every sata / psu cable to the drive bays to keep it tidy, but with the internal fans running on minimum speed the system idles at 23/36 CPU/GPU and peaks at 36/68 CPU/GPU in Metro 2033. If i had not already promised my current desktop to my cousin for Christmas i would have just gone with a new CPU, MOBO and RAM and called it a day :p 

Although i did manage to fit everything into the Antec 900 with one GPU, running SLI would mean having to fit one of the 4 HDDs into the floppy drive bay somehow (or using a 2.5" HDD with caddy if one exists), or removing that HDD all together. This would also mean that the two cards woould be right ontop of eachother :( 

I had a look at the Antec 1200 but i was worried that the PSU to Motherboard power cable wouldn't be long enough, as there are only a few cm to spare int he Antec 900 as it is :/  If oyu could recommend a decent larger towert o me i'd greatly appreciate it.

Thanks again for the help guys

-Zal
a b ) Power supply
November 16, 2010 3:49:20 PM

Well Zal, seems like you have just about everything covered. What kind of budget would you have for a full tower case, I only ask because they can get quite pricey.
a c 91 ) Power supply
November 16, 2010 4:21:58 PM

You won't actually require a full tower.. A spacious case such as the cooler master storm sniper will be enough.. If you insist on a full tower however, then the HAF-X is a great option.. Its GPU cooling abilities are awesome..
a b ) Power supply
November 16, 2010 4:51:00 PM

HAF-X or DF-85 will meet your requirement...

I have HX-1000 PSU. Cables are long enough. I did purchase extension for the MB 12V supply to make my cbaling nicer.

Extension cables are available in the market to improve cable management.
November 16, 2010 7:19:39 PM

Thanks for the replies guys.

I'll probably stick with the Antec 900, HX 1000W and single GPU for now as i am alreayd several hundreds over my initial budget :D 

@leon2006 what sort of system is your HX 1000W supporting?
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