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Would a 400w PSU be enough?

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September 28, 2011 5:01:50 PM

Hello.

I am planning to buy a new CPU.
So. I was wondering would my PSU (400w) be enough for it.

AMD Athlon II X3 450 (I'm thinking of buying this one, as I don't want to build anything powerful.) (It's 95w instead of the old one - 65w)
MSI Nvidia GeForce 9600GT
Gigabyte M61PME-S2
2x1GB DDR2 RAM
500GB 7200rpm HDD

I know it's an old setup, but I'm slowly trying to upgrade to something better.
Would a 400w PSU be enough for this? At least for now. I'm planing to get something better later on.

More about : 400w psu

a c 136 B Homebuilt system
September 28, 2011 6:13:02 PM

Yes a good quality 400 Watt psu will run that fine .

a b B Homebuilt system
September 28, 2011 6:25:07 PM

Depends on what 400w psu were talking about. A quality 400w psu put's out an actual 400w. A cheapo 400w psu might only put out an actual 250w.

I'd suggest getting a x4 955. You will be a lot better off in the long run, you won't need to upgrade it for a long time.
Related resources
a b B Homebuilt system
September 28, 2011 6:45:18 PM

All 400W PSUs are not created equal.

To learn how to determine what PSU is required read thru the information below. You'll be able to determine how much power your Vid card uses, what wattage PSU is required and more importantly how many amps. is required on the 12v rail(s) to properly power your PC now or with future upgrades. Then you can investigate potential PSUs to see which ones are a quality PSU that delivers reliable performance and good value.

Not only will you be able to accurately determine your needs but you'll be able to help other folks in the future who have the same questions as you had.

As far as PSUs are concerned, be informed. Before you buy any PSU read accurate, objective PSU reviews at reputable sites such as www.jonnyguru.com or www.hardwaresecrets.com on the EXACT model PSU that you are interested in as some brands have good and poor quality PSUs.

You can also get an accurate rating of how much PSU power is required for your current or future system at the PSU calculator link below. Once you know the total PSU watts required then you need to confirm that the 12v rail has enough amps. to support your Vid card(s) and the rest of the PC system.

There are several websites that show the Vid card power consumption in watts. Divide the watts by 12 to determine the amps. required on the 12v rail(s). Add 15 amps for the rest of the PC on the 12v rail and you now know the Minimum total 12v rail amps required under full load. It's best to have at least 5-10 amps. reserve on the 12v rail available under full load so the PSU is not loaded to 100%.

It's also worth noting that people often misunderstand the 80% power rating. This is a rating of the PSU's energy efficiency not it's output. 80% plus PSUs use less grid power to produce the same PC power. If it's 80% Bronze, Silver or Gold the cost savings on electricity is pretty small between Bronze, Silver and Gold unless you are paying very high rates for electricity so any 80% rated quality PSU is fine even if not Gold. For those who leave their PC on 24/7 a quality 80% PSU is a good investment.


http://extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.jsp

http://www.guru3d.com/article/geforce-gtx-560-ti-sli-re...

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/NVIDIA/GeForce_GTX_5...

IT'S ALWAYS BETTER TO TEACH A PERSON HOW TO FISH THAN TO GIVE THEM A FISH FOR DINNER!

KNOWLEDGE IS POWER. INVEST SOME EFFORT IN LEARNING SO THAT YOU CAN NOT ONLY HELP YOURSELF BUT OTHER FOLKS TOO.
September 28, 2011 7:28:18 PM

Awesome response by beenthere. You need to find out how many rails your PSU has and how the amperage is divided between them. Newer PSU's like the Seasonic X series are single rails at very high amperages and perform very highly. I know you aren't thinking of getting a PSU, but you will need a new one shortly. I also don't know if a CPU investment is the best option to be honest. I don't think you will see much of a performance increase for gaming purposes or every day use. Only advantage could be in A/V editing but your machine specs suggest that's not what this PC is for.

So I see really no performance advantage as your 9600GT is still going to be your bottleneck (what is your CPU by the way?). There is also the fact that you will be spending money on a cpu for a socket type that is nearly EOL with bulldozer around the corner.

I would recommend saving that money for now, and putting a little more away until you can perform a more substantive upgrade.
September 28, 2011 7:32:12 PM

I currently have an AMD Athlon X2 5400+ (2.8GHz). It's a brisbane with a defective temp sensor, so I need to get a replacement.
I'm planning on getting a new mobo soon and a new gpu.
September 28, 2011 7:44:29 PM

Do it all at one time. Your stuff is beyond obsolescence. It will cost you more in the long run to keep upgrading to older stuff. Buy a new systemboard and CPU with ram at the same time.
September 28, 2011 7:46:32 PM

Sorry for the double-post, but for some reason I'm, not allowed to edit posts.
The thing is that I need a new CPU, but my budget is really tight right now.
Buying the athlon x3 is not the best thing to do, but It seems that I have no other choice.
September 28, 2011 7:47:55 PM

Find a used one on forums or ebay. I have a 3200+ just lying around.
a b B Homebuilt system
September 29, 2011 4:22:22 AM

imarex said:
Sorry for the double-post, but for some reason I'm, not allowed to edit posts.
The thing is that I need a new CPU, but my budget is really tight right now.
Buying the athlon x3 is not the best thing to do, but It seems that I have no other choice.


You better verify that your motherboard supports 45nm X3's before you buy one.
September 29, 2011 4:50:49 AM

+1 beenthere

/sigh at people not looking at other posts / stickies
September 29, 2011 7:19:18 AM

imarex said:
Sorry for the double-post, but for some reason I'm, not allowed to edit posts.
The thing is that I need a new CPU, but my budget is really tight right now.
Buying the athlon x3 is not the best thing to do, but It seems that I have no other choice.


Well if that is the case, then go for it. You could probably dial back to something cheaper though and it would not effect performance. This is really a band-aid/replacement for a defective cpu on an old system and not an upgrade as I think a lot of us incorrectly gathered from the initial post.

Bottom line: 450 is a pretty good deal, though I would recommend looking for something cheaper as this chip won't be something that carries over into an upgrade.

As far as upgrade options you are looking at a complete overhaul. Get whatever CPU replacement you like for now, and wait to see how bulldozer washes out performance/price wise and how that effects Intel prices. From there your most important decisions will be motherboard/psu. Everything else can be obtained at a bargain and upgraded at a bargain, it's the motherboard and psu that really give you the leg room.
a b B Homebuilt system
September 29, 2011 5:21:31 PM

If you spend a few extra bucks on a 955BE, you won't need another upgrade for a couple years.
!