Do I need a new power supply?

By cagedmidget ยท 4 replies
Nov 3, 2007
  1. Hi, I'm pretty knowledgeable with computers but a novice when it comes to power supplies. Just looking for a little help from some of you experts about whether or not my power supply is 'powerful' enough.

    I have been concerned about this as my PC has recently been acting up. The picture tends to freeze for a split second continuously and the sound cuts in and out when I'm watching videos/TV and sometimes when I'm just starting up Windows. Is this a typical symptom of an underpowered PC?

    Here is my setup:
    HP Pavilion a1600n PC (looks like it has a Bestec 300w PS)
    Windows Vista Home Premium
    Athlon 64 X2 3800+
    3 GB RAM (2x1GB + 2x512MB)
    3 HDD (1xIDE, 2xSATA)
    DVD Burner (IDE)
    BFG 7900GS OC Graphics Card
    Hauppauge HVR 1600 Hybrid Tuner Card

    I tried eXtreme Power Supply Calculator v2.5 and it said 297w, so technically I should be ok according to that. But I'm really looking for some advice as to whether or not my symptoms are typical of an underpowered PC and what my next steps should be.

    If my stock power supply is not enough, can someone please recommend a replacement? I'd like it to be quiet and have enough power, but I'd like to avoid spending more than I have to.

    Thanks in advance for your help!
  2. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    No, I wouldn't say that that is a symptom. I'm also not a big fan of PSU calculators, they tend to run much higher than real life.

    I would fire up task manager and switch over to where you can see the percentage of the processor each task is using, and see what happens during these mini freezes. Figure out what program is causing this.

    I would also make sure you are running the latest graphics drivers from nvidia (not from whatever windows update tells you is the latest).
  3. cagedmidget

    cagedmidget TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I tried task manager and there is no task that is spiking the CPU when it is acting up.

    Also, I do have the latest Nvidia drivers installed.

    Thanks again for your help, anything else you could recommend would be awesome
  4. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    You have 3 hard drives. You only have your OS on 1. Unplug the other 2 temporarly. Pull out the tuner card too if you want. Then IF your PSU was at fault, your problems would vanish.
  5. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

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