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New Integrated Power Supply Calculator, Power Supply Efficiencies

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philip Sept. 12, 2012

A couple new power supply features just went live:

  • Power supplies now list their efficiency certification (i.e. 80 PLUS, Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum, etc.) and can be filtered by this attribute
  • An integrated power supply calculator now provides estimated wattage for your part lists, as well as corresponding compatibility guidance (i.e. warns if the PSU is underpowered)

For the power supply calculator, it shows estimated wattage in the part list view (and also in the mini part list on category list pages). The wattage is a link, and if you click on it you'll get a dialog that explains the calculation breakdown. That way if you are curious how I arrived at the number provided, you can see it part by part.

I know that power supply calculation is an area of dispute and controversy... so I figured I'd dive right into that. But that's also where I would love to get your input and help. Is it overestimating? Underestimating? Does it need any need particular tweaks? I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Comments Sorted by:

revspastredline 5 points 80 months ago

This site is beyond useful...if not genius. Thanks.

cajtar 2 Builds 3 points 80 months ago

Thanks Philip! Your wattage calculator passes the quick sniff test I did. That will be a HUGE help to all the peeps who think they need to spend big $$$ on a 950W supply for an i5. When you add it up it is usually surprising how few watts you're actually pulling.

Also, the graph of $/watt are interesting. I say, you've got some web coding skills dude!

Just a Q: the calculated values are peak right? My recent i3-2120 + B75 build comes out at 174W and I mentally estimated 170W peak.

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 2 points 80 months ago

You're right - the values are an estimate of the peak value. There isn't any headroom built in, however. So when choosing a power supply, you'll want to factor in some headroom (the amount of which depending on the quality of the PSU). I hope to do that last bit automatically eventually.

cajtar 2 Builds 1 point 80 months ago

headroom is good, but everything in moderation. Are you thinking ~15% or 50W whichever is greater?
But then...how to consider if they want to expand in the future, say add a dGFX card. In this case, depending on the card you may need another 100W of overhead and then some margin on top. Maybe for each component list the wattage, then a dude can take their build, look at what an extra GTX670 would do and pick a PSU accordingly?

salsaisnice 2 points 80 months ago

5 minutes ago I refreshed and saw this, cool.

wisspy 1 point 80 months ago

YES Thanks for taking my suggestion Phillip :D! Keep up the great work!

nfwolfpryde 1 point 80 months ago

Great job Philip, this is great information.

LegendOfVirgil 1 point 80 months ago

Philip, when do you think the nvidia 650's and 660's will make an entrance to the site?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 80 months ago

Was hoping to have them in already, but it's been a bit crazy today. I should be able to get them in tonight.

LegendOfVirgil 1 point 80 months ago

lol, alright. Just curious on it. Oh, I noticed that under the benchmarks tab there were a bunch of coming soon signs next to game benchmarks. Think they will be ready before the end of the month?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 80 months ago

I can certainly try! :)

Also, the 650s and 660s are now listed: http://pcpartpicker.com/parts/video-card/#c=115,114

LegendOfVirgil 1 point 80 months ago

very nice sir!!

EgaoNoGenki 1 point 80 months ago

Philip, a new bug report:


A $16 16-GB memory item turns out to be a messenger bag.

Also, another RAM item at allegedly $1.12/GB turns out to be a 50-foot ethernet cable.

OutletPC is an outlet of fails tonight. Please look into it. Thanks.

EgaoNoGenki 1 point 80 months ago

Update: I'm afraid that this OutletPC glitch is hitting all the component sections of our site, not just RAM and storage.

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 80 months ago

I am removing their prices now - I apologize for that. It appears their price data feed has gone bonkers (again).

HiFiRob 1 Build 1 point 80 months ago

Very cool! Also...was trying to purchase some stickers from your site the other day and couldnt find the option to pay with paypal. Maybe i'm just blind?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 80 months ago

I had mixed feelings about the PayPal method, and ended up opting to remove it. Let me look into it again - I'm sure I can probably link it up again.

movax 1 point 80 months ago

Thanks you. PSI efficiency certification is something I really waited. Thanks again. Hope to see more useful way of filtering things. See you.

iammykyl 1 point 80 months ago

Hi Philip. How does your PSU calculator factor in the amount of amps on the 12v rail that is required by any given GPU?

philip staff submitter 10 Builds 1 point 80 months ago

It currently doesn't factor that in, however it is something I can look into. Rail amperage data was just recently added to the power supply specifications.

iammykyl 1 point 80 months ago

Thank you for your reply. I am a volunteer on Geeks to Go and configure builds using your site, a great resource.

I look forward to enhancement of the PSU calculator.