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Low PSU voltage, shold I be concerned

Last response: in Components
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July 8, 2011 4:36:42 PM

I was attempting to increase my OC earlier and I noticed that my displayed voltages seemed under what they should be.

I am running a Ultra X2 550 W PSU (it is over 5 years old and gets moderate usage). I know this is a suspect power supply and that they all deteriorate over time, but it is what I have and has worked fine for over 5 years now.

The program that is telling me the voltages is speedfan. I am seeing

+12V at 11.52
+5V at 4.92 (and another at 4.7)
+3.3V at 3.29

Keep in mind that I have been using this set up for years so it is not a new thing and I am not looking into this because something has started being haywire in my system.

My questions are:

Is there a better program to check voltage (I assume I could buy a volt meter but I would rather not)?

Is being undervolted dangerous to my equipment?

If it is dangerous what is at risk (as you can see I am running an old MB and a cheap proc, but I would prefer not to blow out my video card)?

a b ) Power supply
July 8, 2011 4:45:29 PM

Ultra isn't a great brand. You've done well to get five years out of it. Most problems will show up in bluescreens or random shutdowns. If you're not seeing any obvious symptoms now, you may be ok for a short time. I recommend you run at the default settings for awhile, and stop overclocking to reduce stress on your ps. You can start saving for a better branded power supply, such as antec or corsair. Newegg has had some great deals after rebate on the less expensive models of both these brands. If you want some advice on which model to choose, I would list your complete system specs.
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July 8, 2011 4:50:32 PM

o1die said:
Ultra isn't a great brand. You've done well to get five years out of it. Most problems will show up in bluescreens or random shutdowns. If you're not seeing any obvious symptoms now, you may be ok for a short time. I recommend you run at the default settings for awhile, and stop overclocking to reduce stress on your ps. You can start saving for a better branded power supply, such as antec or corsair. Newegg has had some great deals after rebate on the less expensive models of both these brands. If you want some advice on which model to choose, I would list your complete system specs.



My specs are in my Signature. To be honest I am not overly concerned with having the money to buy another PSU, I just don't like paying for things I don't need.

I plan to get a new PSU when I build a new machine in 12 to 24 months. If my PSU dies I would just buy a new one but one that I would re-purpose to use in my next build so I would error on thsi side of a 750 to 850 watt PSU to support SLI/crossfire.
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Best solution

a c 1167 ) Power supply
July 8, 2011 5:46:01 PM

ATX power supply voltages specification :

+12 VDC
Tolerance : ±5% (±0.60 V)
Range (min. to max.) : +11.40 V to +12.60 V

+5 VDC
Tolerance : ±5% (±0.25 V)
Range (min. to max.) : +4.75 V to +5.25 V

+3.3 VDC
Tolerance : ±5% (±0.165 V)
Range (min. to max.) : +3.135 V to +3.465 V

Your +5V voltage reading of 4.7 would be out of spec.

If your motherboard's BIOS Setup Utility has a system monitoring option you should be able to check the voltages in there because they would be more accurate/trustworthy than what is reported by a software utility.
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July 8, 2011 6:02:23 PM

ko888 said:
ATX power supply voltages specification :

+12 VDC
Tolerance : ±5% (±0.60 V)
Range (min. to max.) : +11.40 V to +12.60 V

+5 VDC
Tolerance : ±5% (±0.25 V)
Range (min. to max.) : +4.75 V to +5.25 V

+3.3 VDC
Tolerance : ±5% (±0.165 V)
Range (min. to max.) : +3.135 V to +3.465 V

Your +5V voltage reading of 4.7 would be out of spec.

If your motherboard's BIOS Setup Utility has a system monitoring option you should be able to check the voltages in there because they would be more accurate/trustworthy than what is reported by a software utility.



Thanks for the suggestion on the BIOS. I checked in BIOS and I am at

12V - 12.49
3.3V - 3.41
5V - 5.21

so I am actually a bit high but within the tolerance ranges
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July 8, 2011 6:02:41 PM

Best answer selected by DEY123.
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