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Old 05-26-2008, 08:38 PM   #1
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Default Need to Decide on a PSU...and I know nothing about 12V Rails....

Well, I'm ordering parts and I need to decide on a PSU. I've got three in my price range, and the most expensive has 4 12V rails versus 2 on the other ones. I honestly have no clue what a 12V rail even is and if I even need 4.

Here they are

700W Raidmax for $70

680W Apevia for $80

700W OCZ for $90

Here's what I will eventually be running

MOBO - Asus P5N-E 650 Sli
CPU - E8400
RAM - 4GB of Patriot DDR2 800
GPU - ATI 3870 512MB of GDDR4
DVD/CD Drives - Samsung 20X DVD Writer and a Samsung 18X DVD Writer
HDD - 750GB Seagate

I know that 680-700W is plenty for this system, so if rails don't matter than I'll be going with the cheapest Raidmax here, as I would prefer modular cabling.

Thanks a bunch
Zac
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Old 05-26-2008, 08:59 PM   #2
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Default Re: Need to Decide on a PSU...and I know nothing about 12V Rails....

If the Raidmax is the one you want, it does supply more than enough to power your system with it's dual 20A 12V rails.

I'd be inclined to go with a more reliable unit such as the Antec BP550 Plus 550W for $59.99. 550W is plenty of power for your system. It has modular cabling and has three 12V rails @ 22A, 22A and 25A.
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Old 05-26-2008, 09:03 PM   #3
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Default Re: Need to Decide on a PSU...and I know nothing about 12V Rails....

Well, I currently have 500W PSU...I was only going to get a new one to donate my current to a new build...maybe I should just stick with my original 500W and get a 400-450 or so for the new build. I just wasn't sure that 500W would be enough but I don't know a whole lot about PSUs...thanks A.R.
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Old 05-26-2008, 09:11 PM   #4
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Default Re: Need to Decide on a PSU...and I know nothing about 12V Rails....

Yea, alot of guys seem to think you need all these 600W+ power supplies for these builds. Unless your running dual video cards and a bunch of drives, a good quality 500W PSU is all you really need in most cases. The HD 3870 is going to need at least a 450W PSU. So be careful there.


Here's a good read for you: Single vs. Multiple +12V rails: The splitting of the +12V rail from johnnyGURU.com

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Old 05-26-2008, 09:14 PM   #5
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Default Re: Need to Decide on a PSU...and I know nothing about 12V Rails....

Well thanks a bunch AR. I appreciate your help. Is there a fairly cheap PSU you could recommend purchasing for a system running these specs? (since I'm just keeping my 500W)

EVGA 650 Mobo
C2D 6420 CPU
2GB of OCZ Reaper DDR2 800 RAM
A couple of 40GB IDE HDDs
A DVD Rom drive and CD-RW drive
ATI X1950XT GPU

Thanks
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Old 05-26-2008, 09:16 PM   #6
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Default Re: Need to Decide on a PSU...and I know nothing about 12V Rails....

The +12V rail is the rail that supplies most of the components in your system power. CPU and graphics card mainly, which draw the most power. The more amps on the +12V rail, the better. Amps times rail = watts. So if a PSU had 2 +12V rails at 20A each, it would have 480 watts from the +12V rail. But what some PSU manufacturers do is put a lot of unnecessary power to other rails that aren't as important to boost the watt rating, which is what most people look that. That's why it's important to make sure there are enough amps on the +12V rail.

But also, you want a good quality manufactured PSU. The PSU is supplying every single component in your system with power. If it goes out, it could easily take your whole system with it. That's why it's bad to buy off brand PSUs.

Now, look at that 700 watt Raidmax. It has 40 amps total on the +12V rail. And look at the 550 watt Antec Atomic Rooster suggested. Combined it has 69A on it's +12V rails. See what I mean?


So get the one Atomic Rooster suggested for your new build. It's a great deal. And just keep the old PSU in your old build.
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Old 05-26-2008, 09:19 PM   #7
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Default Re: Need to Decide on a PSU...and I know nothing about 12V Rails....

Ah. Well, that should work wonderfully. Thanks a lot to the both of you.

EDIT: SHOOT!!!! Does anyone have a great alternative...it's out of stock :-(
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Old 05-26-2008, 09:22 PM   #8
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Default Re: Need to Decide on a PSU...and I know nothing about 12V Rails....

The Antec will do as freestyler suggested.

Another great deal would be the SILVERSTONE ST400 400W for $46.99. It's a great bang for your buck.

Here's another 500W: OCZ StealthXStream 500W for $59.99. It's not modular though.

Here's a 500W with modular cabling: Antec Neo Power 500 500W - $74.99

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Old 05-26-2008, 09:41 PM   #9
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Default Re: Need to Decide on a PSU...and I know nothing about 12V Rails....

Yup I'll definitely go with that OCZ then. Even it they don't honor the rebate it's still a great deal. I'm ordering tonight and I'll let everyone know how it goes when everything gets put together!

Thanks again
Zac

UPDATE!: Here's a pic of my PSU that's currently in my case



If I understand it, I only have one 12V rail, so I should probably switch it out with the new OCZ correct?
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