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I'm building a new computer and am about to buy the case / power supply. Not sure how to figure out how much power I need. I have an E8400 on an EP45-UD3P motherboard, will have a GeForce 9600, 2 HDD, and a dvd-R. How do I calculate the wattage requirement?
And got the following answer:
For the right way of calculating the power a PSU must give out, you MUST look at the BIG picture and take many other things into account not just the graphics card. The real lowdown on how much power is needed for PC systems ! For your reference, following are details that illustrates approximately* how much wattage you will need to run various normal common components in a PC system ( the components are on the left and the wattage required on the right): The Motherboard: 15-30 Midrange to high-end CPU: 40-100 RAM: about 7 per 128MB (or 56 W per GB) PCI add-in card: 5 High-End graphics board: 60-100 (some take more) IDE/SATA hard drive: 10-30 Optical CD/DVD drive: 10-25 So let's calculate a system (again, this is an approximation*) with a powerful motherboard, a (High-end) CPU, 4 Gigs of RAM, 3 PCI cards (including one (high-end) graphic card), 2 hard drives and 1 optical drive. That would be 30+100+224(128MB X 8 X 4 = 4Gigs @ 7 per 128MB)+15(3 X 5)+100+60 (2 X 30)+25 = 554 * It has to be an approximation as I'm not the one building it so compare your entire computer specs with the list and refine the math on your own, you will then know what PSU you should get. NOTES: Leave yourself a bit of slack in your calculation for future hardware - Example: As calculated above, I would consider a PSU of at least 600 Watts and get up to 700 Watts if the price difference is not too much for you. Also, always compare PSUs on cost AND caliber, in other words, go for power supplies that have a "quality build" never for one where the cost is cheap (because you can be sure it's not only the price that is that way). Best PSU manufacturers at the moment are brands like Antec, Cooler Master, Corsair and Thermaltake. P.S.: My guide is partly based on this link: http://static.tigerdirect.com/html/powersuppliesGuide.html