TechSpot

Power Supply/Video Card?

By Logistix
Sep 19, 2006
  1. Hello all,
    There is a similar thread to my question, but I thought I would start fresh since the topic is quite old..

    My current computer setup (Stated below) is quite standard, and I plan on making a couple of changes to it soon.

    My question(s) are..

    I have ATI Radeon XPress 200 Onboard graphics, with an ASUS A8AE-LE/AmberineM-GL6E Motherboard, I have been debating on getting a graphics card, and have read around quite a bit about what to upgrade to.I have read a lot of issues about upgrading with an Nvidia card with ATI onboard graphics, so that pretty much limits me to getting another ATI card. I was looking at purchasing a SAPPHIRE 100146L Radeon X1600XT 256MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 CrossFire Supported found http://www.newegg.com/product/Product.asp?item=N82E16814102657

    I am wondering if I am going to need to upgrade my Power Supply. The information that I could find on it is very limited. (I am thinking because it was built for Compaq computers alone, very similar to the ASUS board that I have. No information about it from the manufacturer at all).

    ------------------------------------------------------------

    Manufacturer: Bestec - Model: ATX300-12Z-Rev.CD

    Input: 100 - 127V - 12A
    200 - 240V - 4A 60/50Hz

    Output: 300w Max
    +12V / 19A -12V / 0.8A
    +5V / 30A +5VSB/ 2A
    +3.3V

    +5V & 3.3V 180W Max / +5V & 12V 288W Max

    --------------------------------------------------------

    Ive read a lot of mixed reviews/suggestions about what kinds of power supplies are better than others. I had one in mind that came with a bundle at newegg.com but it is a 120MM fan, which I dont believe will fit in my tower. Any suggestions on what is a reasonably priced power supply IF I need to purchase one for this video card?


    Thank you much for reviewing my long post, any input would be greatly appreciated, since I have been trying to figure out what to do for a while now. With Vista just beyond the horizon, I need to figure something out quick, because my #2 rating on X64 is just depressing..

    Thank you,
    Chris
     
  2. dmill89

    dmill89 TS Guru Posts: 737

    The vid card you selected sounds like a decent choice.

    Yes you will need a new powersupply (PSU). Your PSU has only 300w total and 19A on the 12v rail. Besides Bestec PSUs are garbage anyway.

    Here are some suggestions.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817104952
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817103928
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817194012
    http://www.pcpowercooling.com/products/viewproduct.php?show=S47ATX PC Power & Cooling makes the best PSUs out there but they are a little pricey.However a PCP&C PSU will likely outlast everything else in your system.
     
  3. Logistix

    Logistix TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I was thinking of purchasing a combo package from newegg.com that contained the videocard I stated above. It also comes with this Coolmax PSU: http://www.newegg.com/product/Product.asp?item=N82E16817159054

    I also forgot to mention that my tower has no AGP slots, only PCIE, so im guessing that I need to get a PSU that has extra PCIE cables?

    Thank you for the reply, and the suggestions dmill89. Is there any way you could explan how to read the numbers on a PSU? I dont understand them enough to make a good decision by comparison.

    Thanks,
    Chris
     
  4. dmill89

    dmill89 TS Guru Posts: 737


    here's how to read the numbers.(I'll use your old PSU for examples with this scence the spece are already listed)

    Output 300w means the max combined (all voltages)output of this PSU is 300watts
    +12v/19a There 19 Amps ont the 12v rail.(this is importand as most modern video cards require 26A on the 12Vv rail(s)
    For PSUs with more than 1 12v rail you will get something like this 12v1@18A ,12v2@18A which means there are 18A on two 12v rails for a total of 36A across both 12v rails.(add the amps acroos all 12v rails to get the total)
    +5v/30A means there are 30A on the 5v rail (this rail is not too impoartant but like amps on all rails the higher the better)
    +5v&3.3v 180 watts max means there is a max of 180w avalible on the 5v and 3.3V rails combined
    +5v&12v 288w max means there are a total of 288 watts avalible on the 5v and 12v rails combined

    I've heard some bad things about coolmax PSUs (mainly cheep units) and do not recomend them. Do not confuse Coolmax with Coolermaster which makes decent Powersupplies. I believe the PSU you listed is overpriced because It has a low amps rateing on the 12v (34a) rails for an sli PSU.Most Sli PSUs have closer to 50A on the 12 v rail(s).

    The video card you listed does not require a seperite PCI-express connector. But Most newer PSUs have atleast one which is all you need as your system is not sli or crossfire compatible.

    This list gives you good and bad PSUs
    http://hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=792566
     
  5. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    For the price, the first psu dmill89 listed is the best deal. FSP makes good psu's and it has plenty of watts and amps for what you need.
     
  6. Logistix

    Logistix TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Alright.. Doing a comparison between what my system has now, and what the Fortron Source offers, I cant complain lol. And its very affordable. I did a dimension check on a similar bestec PSU, and that one, and its the same, so it should fit. Im gonna go ahead with this and the X1600XT video card I was looking at. Thanks a bunch guys! :)
     
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