Reliable PSUs for your gaming PC
The power supply unit (PSU) is the heart of every PC. It takes AC power from the wall and converts it to low-voltage DC power, which then goes on to power all your components. So if you want reliable, steady power to your motherboard, CPU, RAM, graphics cards, drives, fans, (and of course!) RGB lights, you need to get a good power supply. If you don't you'll quickly run into stability problems and your PC will randomly shut down.
Like everything else about building a PC, there's a lot to consider when picking your rig's power plant. From wattage and efficiency to modularity, there's a lot to think about here, and lucky for you we've done all the research already. From the affordable option to absolute powerhouses able to run two systems at the same time, we've picked out the best power supplies available today.
TL;DR – These are the Best Power Supplies
- Corsair RMx Series RM750x
- Corsair VS Series VS600
- Cooler Master V850
- SilverStone Technology SX1000 Platinum
- Corsair AXi Series AX1600i
- be quiet! Dark Power 12 750W
- Cooler Master XG850 Plus Platinum
1. Corsair RMx Series RM750x
Best Power Supply
Corsair RMx Series RM750x
Max Power: 750W | Modular: Full | Efficiency: 80 Plus Gold | Connectors: 1 x ATX 24-Pin, 2 x EPS, 4 x PCIe, 10 x SATA, 4 x Peripheral | Dimensions: 3.39″ x 5.91″ x 6.30″
For just $140, the Corsair RMx Series RM750x is a is a capable power supply that gets the job done for a majority of gaming PC builds. It provides 750 watts, letting it keep even powerful gaming PCs juiced up reliably. It runs that power through all-Japanese capacitors, known for their reliability, that are rated for up to 105 degrees Celsius, though the 135mm magnetic levitation fan should keep things plenty cool. The power supply is also efficient, earning an 80 Plus Gold rating.
The Corsair RMx Series RM750x is fully modular, so you can keep your PC’s internals free from extraneous cable clutter. There are plenty of options for what you can connect with two EPS connectors for hungry CPUs, four connectors for PCIe add-ins, and a whopping 10 SATA connectors as well as four peripheral connectors.
2. Corsair VS Series VS600
Best Budget Power Supply
Corsair VS Series VS600
Max Power: 600W | Modular: No | Efficiency: 80 Plus White | Connectors: 1 x ATX 24-Pin, 1 x EPS, 3 x PCIe (1 x 4+4, 2 x 6+2), 6 x SATA, 3 x Peripheral, 1 x Floppy | Dimensions: 3.39″ x 5.91″ x 4.92″
If you’re building a PC with more modest needs, you can get away with a lower-wattage power supply. It's not modular but that won't matter if your PC case doesn't have tempered glass sides to show off the internals or has a shroud to hide a mess of cables. The Corsair VS Series VS600 provides a decent amount of power for just $60. It’s even 80 Plus White certified, giving you a guarantee of efficiency you shouldn’t go without, even if it’s the lowest 80 Plus rating.
This power supply is fairly compact, though not an SFX model, yet it still can pump out 600 watts, which should do for a lot of mid-range builds — think an AMD Ryzen 5 or Intel Core i5 and something like an RTX 3060. Just don’t plan on going for a very hungry CPU and serious overclocking motherboard, as there’s just a single 8-pin connector for sending power to the CPU.
3. Cooler Master V850
Best SFX Power Supply
Cooler Master V850
You don't have to settle for a low-power system just because you want to build in a mini ITX case. The Cooler Master V850 power supply has all the juice you need to run a beefy rig, but it comes squeezed into an SFX form factor to fit into your mini builds.
The Cooler Master V850 is a fully-modular power supply, so you can swap out any of the cables. Cooler Master supplies cables with the package, but if you have a different style in mind or need different lengths and shapes to fit inside your case, you'll have the option to change. The power supply features a fluid dynamic bearing fan for quieter operation and offers an 80 Plus Gold power efficiency.
4. SilverStone Technology SX1000 Platinum
Best SFX-L Power Supply
SilverStone Technology SX1000 Platinum
Max Power: 1,000W | Modular: Full | Efficiency: 80 Plus Platinum | Connectors: 1 x ATX 20/24-Pin, 2 x EPS 4+4-pin, 6 x PCIe 6+2-pin, 8 x SATA, 3 x Peripheral, 1 x Floppy | Dimensions: 5.12″ x 4.92″ x 2.5″
When you’ve got a small build, you can sometimes be pretty limited with what parts you’re able to fit inside. But, if your case and build provide that little bit of extra space for a SFX-L power supply, the SilverStone SX1000 won't disappoint. It delivers up to 1,000W of power while maintaining the highest efficiency levels that earn it a 80 Plus Platinum certification. When you’re running at lower loads, you’ll also be able to enjoy silent operation with a dual ball bearing fan that runs at just 18dBA at the quietest and maxes out at only 38dBA, though the fan can go quieted still by remaining off when power loads are below 20% of max.
The SilverStone SX1000 Platinum is fully modular, so you can build using only the power cables you need. This will help you keep your small form factor build tidy for better airflow and aesthetics. That said, the power supply includes a bunch of cables in case your rig is going to be fully loaded.
5. Corsair AXi Series AX1600i
Best High Capacity Power Supply
Corsair AXi Series AX1600i
Max Power: 1600W | Modular: Full | Efficiency: 80 Plus Titanium | Connectors: 1 x ATX 24-Pin, 2 x EPS, 10 x PCIe, 16 x SATA, 9 x Peripheral, 2 x Floppy, 1 x USB | Dimensions: 3.39″ x 5.91″ x 7.87″
Some of us are building gaming computers for mere mortals. We may use 65W CPUs and graphics cards that barely top out over 200 watts. But, if you're building a HEDT computer and need some serious wattage for everything from CPU overclocking, dual graphics cards, and a smattering of storage drives, powerful fans, and RGB lighting, then the Corsair AXi Series AX1600i is for you.
The name of this power supply is probably a good hint that this unit offers up 1,600 watts of power. You won't have to shy away from that dual-RTX 3090 setup with this power supply in your rig. The Corsair AXi Series AX1600i delivers power with 80 Plus Titanium efficiency and uses all Japanese capacitors alongside gallium nitride transistors. With Corsair Link software, you can also monitor performance and adjust settings.
6. be quiet! Dark Power 12 750W
Best Silent Power Supply
be quiet! Dark Power 12 750W
Max Power: 750W | Modular: Full | Efficiency: 80 Plus Titanium | Connectors: 1 x ATX 20+4-Pin, 1 x CPU 8-pin, 1 x CPU 4+4-pin, 6 x PCIe 6+2-pin, 12 x SATA, 5 x PATA, 1 x Floppy | Dimensions: 6.9″ x 5.91″ x 3.39″
Fans are great for cooling, and you definitely don't want your power supply overheating, but sometimes you just wish those fans could take a chill pill and stop whirring away. In that case, the be quiet! Dark Power 12 750W power supply can keep your system juiced up without cranking out a ton of noise in the process. It manages that with a special mesh front and be quiet!'s Silent Wings fan.
The Dark Power 12 750W power supply should meet the needs of most computers with ease (with enthusiast and HEDT PCs being an exception), and it can deliver that power with excellent efficiency, as indicated by its 80 Plus Titanium rating. As a fully modular power supply, the Dark Power 12 750W will help you handle your cable organization, so you can skip out on cables your system doesn't need or opt for different length cables depending on the needs of your setup.
7. Cooler Master XG850 Plus Platinum
Best RGB Power Supply
Cooler Master XG850 Plus Platinum
Max Power: 850W | Modular: Full | Efficiency: 80 Plus | Connectors: 1 x ATX 24-Pin, 2 x EPS (1 x 8-pin, 1 x 4+4-pin), 6 x PCIe, 12 x SATA, 4 x Peripheral, 1 x USB | Dimensions: 6..3″ x 5.9″ x 3.4″
You don’t need to miss out on style just to get power. The Cooler Master XG850 Plus Platinum combines a capable power supply with some flashy RGB. This PSU keeps cool under load using a 135mm ARGB fan that not only moves a bunch of air quietly with its fluid dynamic fan bearing but also delivers tons of lighting. You get ARGB LEDs embedded around the fan, and it doesn’t stop there, a digital side panel can display fan speed, temperature, and power consumption. And, of course, Cooler Master gives you a ton of control over how you customize the lighting with their MasterPlus+ software.
Though the RGB lighting is fun, the Cooler Master XG850 Plus Platinum’s main focus is power. And you get 850W of it with an 80 PLUS Platinum Certification, ensuring efficiency, while the capacitors used in both the cables and platform are reliable and reduce ripple noise. This unit is also fully modular, so you can swap out longer or shorter cables and omit extraneous ones. After all, you want to reduce clutter to improve airflow, and that RGB lighting would be spoiled by a tangle of cables.
What to look for in a Power Supply
It’s tempting to simply think “more is better” and go for the highest wattage number you can find. This would be a big mistake. A 1200-watt power supply is not necessarily higher quality than a 650-watt one, and definitely not the right choice for a system that won’t use nearly that much power.The wattage rating on a PSU describes how much power it can supply, but there are plenty of caveats. Some PSUs may supply a lot of peak power in total, but not enough to the critical components. Or, as temperatures rise, power delivery may become unreliable. There are dozens of PSU calculators out there, and using one can be a good place to start. Many of them recommend way more PSU than you really need out of an abundance of caution. If you’re not going crazy with overclocking or multiple top-end graphics cards, you probably don’t need a big ‘ol 850-watt power supply.
Of course, the efficiency by which the PSU converts AC to DC is very important. You’ll typically see one of three different “80 Plus” ratings on power supplies: Bronze, Silver, and Gold. There are Platinum and Titanium ratings too, but they are more rare. To be 80 Plus certified, a PSU must deliver at least 80% efficiency at 20%, 50%, and 100% of the maximum rated load. The higher the rating, the further above 80% the PSU’s efficiency. A more efficient power supply will generate less heat and draw less power from the wall, so it’s often worth the extra expense.
Mark Knapp is a regular contributor to IGN and an irregular Tweeter on Twitter @Techn0Mark