Here is the actual size of your PC power supply

For the average gamer who isn’t trying to push the boundaries of technology and performance, it can be difficult to gauge the size of your power supply, especially if this is your first PC build.

The PC power supply converts power from your outlet to regulated low voltage DC power for the computer’s internal components.

Therefore, the best way to determine the best power supply unit for your PC is to calculate the total power of your current rig’s components, as the power supply will need to be able to operate simultaneously.

However, if you intend to build a mid-range PC that can run most games smoothly at medium to high settings, there is a very specific range when it comes to power.

The average power required

In 2022, a budget for a midrange PC will likely have a total power requirement of between 300 and 500 Watts.

This is based primarily on the average power requirements of the graphics card, CPU, and motherboard – fans and storage contribute negligibly in comparison.

For example, a midrange build in 2022, a 12th Gen Core i5 processor will require around 150 watts, a GTX 1660 Ti graphics card will require 120 watts, and the motherboard, fans, storage, and memory will average between 100 and 150 watts.

However, when building your PC and considering the specs of your desired rigs, it’s essential to remember that it’s not always best to meet power requirements exactly.

Therefore, you should consider using a power supply that offers around 100 watts of additional power. This extra power will have no performance benefit, but will ensure that when you eventually upgrade components, you won’t need to purchase a new power supply.

Along with this, it is essential that even if you are not affected by future upgrades, the power supply you get can meet the requirements of your components.

Too much power won’t have any noticeable effect on performance, but too little power can cause serious problems, ranging from computer crashes to damaged components.

Recommendation

So given that and the current requirements for a mid-range PC, the recommended power supply size would be 600-700 watts, with a bias towards the higher figure.

While it won’t increase your PC’s performance, it will save you from having to worry about a new power supply when upgrading your PC for years to come.

Luckily, PSUs aren’t the most expensive component when building a PC, and if you buy a high-quality PSU, it’s also going to be one of the most durable components.

For a good quality, well-branded power supply, you’re looking at between R1,000 and R2,000 for a 700 watt capacity – a relatively small sum to pay for a component that’s likely to outlast the rest of your rig.

For this you will want to get a power supply with at least an 80 Plus Gold certification as this refers to the manufacturers who sent the component for testing to ensure its quality.

On most websites, this certification appears clearly as a small stamp on the image or in the product description.

While this is our recommendation, it cannot be stressed enough to always carefully check and add up the power requirements of each of your PC’s components before purchasing anything.


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Alan A. Seibert