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27 Apr 2011, 02:02
54 Posts

A bit of backstory. Two years ago, I refitted my desktop with the latest and greatest graphics card I could afford: an ASUS GTX 275. It's a good card and it's served me well since.

However, when I refitted the machine I was fairly new to the whole business of choosing parts. Having spent a cool £160 on the graphics card, I decided to cut corners by buying a cheap, no-name power supply from Amazon. This very one, in fact. I stress that those reviews were not available at the time, but even so it was the move of an idiot and one for which I'm now paying the price.

You see, over the last few months, the power supply has begun to fail in the form of cutouts under heavy load, or even sometimes at random. They started sporadically and have recently increased to four or five times a day. Research shows that this is likely a sign of imminent, catastrophic failure which I suspect would take out the rest of my machine with it. I've unplugged the machine and am writing this on my backup desktop: a 2004 model eMac. Hardly a substitute.

The bottom line is that I need a replacement PSU. Being a student on an extremely low income, I took a look at other budget power supplies but I'm avoiding them like the plague because of the likelihood of lightning striking twice. Words like "exploded" and "shower of sparks" are not encouraging things to read in product reviews.

I'm forced to buy a branded model with recognized reliability. The problem is that Amazon and Ebuyer list appropriate models around the £60-70 mark: something that would take months of saving to collect. My system's requirements are a 550w minimum with 24 pin motherboard connection and 2x 6 pin plugs.

So I'm asking to draw on your collective experience. Do you know of any places where such a PSU could be found for less with UK voltage compatibility and shipping? Preferably one that won't start a fire?

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Hacker Hacker
User avatar
20 Mar 2010, 20:58
465 Posts

Do you really need at least 550 watts? I've been running with a beQuiet 375 watts PSU for the last few years, powering a Phenom II 955 + radeon 4870 and now i7 2600k + radeon 6950 and it works out fine. :)
The only time where the PSU started "squealing" was when I ran a additional 8800GTS for PhysX. :D

TL;DR
Over here in Germany you could get a nice beQuiet (the brand I trust ;) ) 430 watts PSU for ~50€ (~45 GBP) or 530 watts PSU for ~60€ (~50 GBP).
Server Admin Server Admin
User avatar
14 Oct 2009, 16:26
1052 Posts

Hi Farmer. You may have heard of Novatech. I buy most of my components and upgrades from there.

I use a Novatech PowerStation 750W modular power supply, and it's running wonderfully.
It's not loud in terms of noise. They have a range of different wattages in their PowerStation series:

PowerStation 400W £32.98
PowerStation 500W £42.98
PowerStation 600W £52.98
PowerStation 750W £64.98

Their 600W model at £52.98 may be better than some prices you've been quoted on Amazon.
Server Admin Server Admin
User avatar
25 Nov 2009, 22:49
1890 Posts

The only two things you actually need to look at, when purchasing a PSU, is how many amp's it supplies on it's 12V line, and the price.
You need to know how many amps your GPU requires, then match that when looking for a PSU. You don't need much above, just a little. All the other specs are usually not needed. (Except of course if you want a really silent one, you'd have to look at RPM and noise levels)
The Watt's of the PSU means absolutely nothing. I have seen 1000W PSU's that couldn't even run an old computer, and I've seen a ~300W PSU run a beast of a computer.
One thing, that I can encourage to look for in a PSU though, is that it's modular, which means that you can plug in, just the cables that you need, which helps with tidying up your enclosure, and ensures a better airflow.
Server Admin Server Admin
User avatar
07 Jul 2009, 02:20
840 Posts

*hugs his 750w quad 12v rail thermaltake PSU*

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Server Admin Server Admin
User avatar
07 Jul 2009, 02:20
840 Posts

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/XFX-Pro-650W- ... 231f98c8f5

Type of connector: XFX XPS-650W-SEW
ATX connector (580mm) 20+4 pin
4+4 pin EPS12V/ATX12V (620mm) 1
6 pin PCIe (580mm) 2
6+2 pin PCIe (580mm) 2
5.25" Drive (390mm+150mm+150mm+150mm) 7
3.5" Drive connectors (+150mm) 1
SATA (360mm+150mm+150mm+150mm) 8

Seems like this should do the job and cheap as hell to boot :)

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