Help choosing a modular power supply



Well, my Alienware machine has given me one too many hardware issues and before I smoosh it with a blunt heavy object, I need to build a new machine. Here are the parts I have on order and a bit o' research suggests a modular power supply would be best for an Antec Skeleton. Here are the parts I have on order, with the HD and optical drive being stripped from the AW junk pile.



Video Card:





Oct 6, 2009
The minimum recommended power for your Graphics Card is 300W in a single card system. This applies to your whole system not just your GPU. The maximum rated power output for the card itself is 69W.

The trick is finding a good modular PSU at that low a power output. So far:

SeaSonic M12II 520

or the SeaSonic X650 which is 80Plus GOLD rated, the highest efficiency rating there is.

I guess it all depends on your budget etc. Corsair and some of the later Antec models would be worth looking at too. See what you can find but that Seasonic X650 does look tasty! Would give you plenty of headroom too if you ever wanted to SLi in the future.


Thank you for the fast reply! Given my bad experience with my Alienware system which was SLi-enabled with a pair of 8800GTX cards, one of which died after a bout of system instability whenever I had it enabled, I doubt I'll ever go that route again. The only real concerns I had was ensuring I would be able to power all of the gear I would plug in and actually be able to fit the psu into the case. The skeleton seems so... odd, so the dimensions of the psu kinda concerned me.

Anyway, I will check out those links, especially the SeaSonic.

Thank you again!
The general rule of thumb is a high quality 500 to 550 watt power supply with sufficient current (amps) on the +12 volt rail(s) can easily power a system with any single video card made. A high quality 700 to 750 watt power supply with sufficient current (amps) on the +12 volt rail(s) can power a system with two video cards operating in dual mode. There are a few exceptions like the new ATI Radeon HD 5XXX series cards which use less power due to their energy efficiency.

A high quality 500 to 550 watt psu will have a +12 volt rail rated at 40 amps. A high quality 700 to 750 watt psu will have a +12 volt rail rated at 60 amps.

In addition the power supply should be at least 80+ Bronze certified for energy efficiency. There are some models available which have achieved 80+ Silver and 80+ Gold Certifications.

Before purchasing a new psu you will need to decide whether you will eventually have a pc with one or two video cards.

Corsair and Seasonic are two brands that have a reputation for high quality power supplies that consistently earn high marks in technical reviews. They are reliable, stable, and come with a 5 year warranty. Some of the newer models come with a 7 year warranty. Lately we've been seeing a few other brands offering some high quality units. One example would be the Antec Earthwatts and the Antec TruePower New series which are major improvements over Antec’s older psu’s like the Basiq models.


Hi, all!

I just wanted to post to say thank you fpr all of the input. I went with this PSU and my new machine is purring right along. Gotta love the modular PSU! :D