Jump to content
59abbot

How long does a psu last??

Recommended Posts

 

Hi guys. For a good quality PSU, is there a good "rule of thumb" to go by as to the usable life span?

 

I ask only because I am on the home stretch of building my 1155 system, and I currently have a Cooler Master GX 650W psu that's getting to be about 4 years old. It's been powerering the system in my sig since purchased new. On average, I'd say my computer is on about 60 hours a week, with 50% of those hours used for gaming. The rest of the time it is either powered off or in Sleep Mode.

 

Should I consider a new PSU, or should the GX 650 keep chugging along for quite some time yet?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Speaking from a purely electronic component viewpoint, there really is no sure-fire formula. I have an Antec PS outside in my shop system that has provided years of service without a blip of any sort. I have even older supplies that are still functioning. I have a bench 12v supply that is nearly 35 years old. It still works great. I pop the breaker occasionally, but that's not the device's fault.

 

The rule of thumb before the Chinese took over the world market was that you usually get what you paid for. In other words, a $20 power supply was not going to be as high quality as a $75 power supply from a known quality manufacturer. However, these days, it seems that it's all the same junk from the same Chinese factory where the little girls earn their two bowls of rice a day for assembling and packing these units. They just stick different brand stickers on them.

 

Oh phooey! I'm just being the cynical old electronic technician here. A good rule to follow these days is still that the main line manufacturers still provide a better quality product than the cheaper no-name stuff. Stick with Antec. You won't go wrong.

 

Something else to think about... heat is a KILLER of electronics. Keep your PSUs clean and well ventilated. Also, ALL electronics components have a lifetime. If you're not using the computer, disconnect power from it. That will spare you from wasting component lifetime when you're not even at home. A powered computer that is not being used for anything is just a waste of electricity. That's my old codger opinion. Others here will beg to differ, I'm sure.

 

Oh, and WELCOME to Scot's! :)

 

Regards,

 

~Eric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well first off, welcome to the forums!! :thumbsup:

 

As far as the psu, I do not think they really have a shelf life but it mainly depends on what hardware you are powering. I personally have Ultra LSP750 750w Power Supply(for the last 2 years) and I have no problem powering 5.5x 1tb drives(3.5tb internal sata and 2tb external usb3), Radeon 6790 powering three monitors, i5 processor and 16gb ram. So you should not have an issue but like I said, it depends on your hardware.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
WOW! It's not every support forum that you go to where TWO Admins answer a new member's query right off the bat. Man! We AIM TO PLEASE here at Scot's, huh? :w00t:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, I have to disagree with leaving your computer on but that is just my opinion. I have not turned my machine off in almost a year besides the occasional reboot(kernel update and hardweare upgrade). The only machines I have had issues with are laptops. I have had a battery fail to hold a charge and one screen stopped working from leaving it on all the time but it could just been inferior hardware.

 

That said, I agree with Eric about the rest of his statement. :hysterical:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
WOW! It's not every support forum that you go to where TWO Admins answer a new member's query right off the bat. Man! We AIM TO PLEASE here at Scot's, huh? :w00t:

Actually, it would been a lot faster but I was at work when I read the post earlier. Good ole email notification B)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Well, until one of us around here hits that Lottery, I guess you'll have to keep working. ;)

Nah this is far from working. I actually enjoy this stuff, go figure :wacko: :blink: B)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I didn't mean what you do here. I meant your paying job across the street. Or do you not work across the street anymore?

I do, shhh... :whistling: :ph34r:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You like that job? That's COOL! Liking your job is 90% of the battle. I envy you. I don't have a job at the moment, but there haven't been many that I truly liked... or if I did like them in the beginning, it didn't last. Kinda' like my love affairs. ;)

 

59abbot - Sorry for trashing your thread. Say the word and we can split these post off of this thread for you. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

welcome, 59abbot!

 

hope you enjoy your stay, here at scot's!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From my experience, the important factor is weight. I've had more than a couple of fancy shmancy psu go out in less than a year and quite a few cheap psu last for over 7 years (even over 10 years). from what i've been able to tell, the psu with heavy cases are the ones that last.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi guys. For a good quality PSU, is there a good "rule of thumb" to go by as to the usable life span?

 

I ask only because I am on the home stretch of building my 1155 system, and I currently have a Cooler Master GX 650W psu that's getting to be about 4 years old. It's been powerering the system in my sig since purchased new. On average, I'd say my computer is on about 60 hours a week, with 50% of those hours used for gaming. The rest of the time it is either powered off or in Sleep Mode.

 

Should I consider a new PSU, or should the GX 650 keep chugging along for quite some time yet?

The simple answer is "no". The two main culprits it PSU failure are overheating and leaking capacitors. Overheating can be avoided by not pushing the PSU to close to its rated power and keeping the ventilation and fan clear of dust. Fan failure can also lead to overheating but normally advertise eminent failure by getting noisy. Leaking capacitors are normally the product of poor (cheap) manufacturing. But if your current PSU has lasted four years, it will possibly last another four.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And don't forget power fluctuations! Not all power is created equal ... from area to area, and from time of day to time of day. Spikes, brownouts, they can wreak havoc with 'sensitive' computer equipment and make everything work harder. And then there's thunderstorms that can be a real hazard too...

 

If you can condition your electricity with a UPS that has AVR (automatic voltage regulation) or Line Conditioning (as another company calls it) ... your system won't have to work so hard at being a good little working computer.

 

And I totally agree with good names in PSUs and I do like ANTEC probably best if they are as good as they used to be. They cost a little more, but you get what you pay for...usually.

 

Now as to whether you should use an older 4 year old PSU in a brand new system ... It will likely work for a while. I wouldn't do it though. I would buy a new one and use the 4 yr old in another not so new system. But another rule of thumb is that that one is tried and true and if it is working well with no caps ready to go etc. it could work a long time yet too. But are you willing to test that theory? That's your real question. Could use it initially, and get a new one ASAP and put that one away for emergencies too.

 

Any ANTEC, Corsair or Seasonic...all will serve you well.

 

Here's a few to look at (ANTEC is often best value but the Corsair at Amazon is a very good value too):

 

Antec EarthWatts EA650 650W Power Supply - $88.99 - Amazon

 

Corsair Enthusiast Series 650-Watt 80 Plus Bronze Certified Power Supply Compatible with Intel Core i3, i5, i7 and AMD platforms - CMPSU-650TXV2 - $79.99 - Amazon

 

CORSAIR Professional Series HX650 (CMPSU-650HX) 650W ATX12V v2.2 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply - $129.99 - NewEgg

 

Seasonic 660W 80 Plus Gold ATX12V/EPS12V Power Supply - X-660 SS-660KM - $160.70 - Amazon (they said they would gift wrap it and at that price, I would make them do it LOL!)

 

SeaSonic X Series X650 Gold ((SS-650KM Active PFC F3)) 650W ATX12V V2.3/EPS 12V V2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS GOLD Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply - $139.99 - NewEgg

 

 

 

Hope that helps!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/psu-ma...Ms%2011-14-2010

 

A great source of information.

 

Me I use Corsair psu's 5 year guarantee and Gold certification from a quality company with a unparallelled reputation in the memory field to protect.

 

Gabriel knows her stuff

 

Check out the Awarded products list on the left of the article for further information on individual psu's.

 

http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/blog/

 

From the above link

 

We are proud to be very well-known for exposing products that can’t perform as expected, being open and very vocal in defending that all publications should have the same policy. However, we know of several websites that simply won’t post negative reviews, as they think manufacturers won’t advertise on them if they do. Some will even take money to post favorable reviews, or take down reviews if the manufacturer complains.

 

 

 

:thumbsup:

Edited by abarbarian

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Personally, I always use the Ultra PSUs. Currently, I have a Ultra LSP750 750w Power Supply and they all come with a lifetime warranty.

Great price and lifetime warranty if you register online, or 3 yr warranty even if you don't register. Not bad.

 

Are they quiet?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Great price and lifetime warranty if you register online, or 3 yr warranty even if you don't register. Not bad.

 

Are they quiet?

Very quiet!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No one has mentioned this but just to add some info.

 

A power supply does lose power efficiency after some use. A good rule of thumb to use is that there is roughly 5%-10% loss in efficiency after every year of regular use. Antec is a good brand name but they do not make their own PSUs - some of their models are re-badged Seasonics.

 

I've used several Antec models and built a few a systems w/ Thermaltake. For higher end systems, I prefer Seasonic and PC Power & Cooling like this model.

 

PC Power and Cooling Silencer Mk II 950 Watt

Edited by Tushman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just an FYI on rated wattage on the PSU and what it actually costs to run it 24x365.

 

I have a great Antec 650W PSU in my full size tower. It runs a C2Q6600 on an older Intel 975XBX2 board, 8 hard drives, a pair of DVD drives and a HD5450 GPU. Nothing too energy intensive except at startup. This power supply draws 2.2 amps off my UPS in normal running mode at 123VAC. That's about 270watts. My APC UPS is not 100% efficient but if it were DTE Energy (my electrical utility) says that my PC costs $334.94 to run my PC 168 hours a week 52 weeks a year. Is it still worth keeping it on all the time?

 

It is also interesting that this 650W rated PSU is only using 270W from the wall socket. Sticking in a higher rated capacity PSU will make it last longer. Keep it clean and it will reward you with years of use. Keep it on a good UPS and you might only have to replace it when it runs out of the plugs you need for one of your next PC's.

 

Just for giggles. My 22" LG LCD draws 50 watts where as my new Samsung 24" LED LCD draws so little that the meter doesn't move. Is the extra display worth an extra $60 a year (if it's on 24x365)? After seeing the 200 watt load my Windows Home Server has when it's running I have decided to scale back it's power on times to weekends only for primarily backup purposes only.

 

I had great service from PC Power & Cooling in the last too and can't recommend them highly enough. They even fixed one of my PSU's under warranty after a nearby lightning hit smoked it. If I were in the market for a good new PSU I'd look at efficiency and silence as the reasons for selecting one over another.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you keep your systems powered up all the time, you have to take into consideration more than just the cost of the electricity. You also have to consider the cost of repair/replacement over time because you're using up the lifetime of the components even when you're away from the machine. You wouldn't run your car outside in the driveway all night while you were sleeping, even if gasoline were free. Why would anyone leave their computer on when they're not using it. It's just a waste of... everything.

 

I have never understood that mentality. Sorry. :(

 

Later...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you allow your hard drives to be put to sleep (so it doesn't continue to eat away at mtbf - meantime before failure) and your monitors for similar reasons (and that would depend on which type of monitor you have as to whether you will have burn in issues), after some specified idle time, then generally the rest of the components in the computer are just electronics like resisters, capacitors, etc. which generally do better (like incandescent light bulbs) if you don't put them under the hardship of turning them off and on frequently.

 

However, as Eric noted, there is, as in everything, valid arguments on both sides of the (leave it on/turn it off) coin. ;)

 

Personally, as we have learned from older computers, and uptimes for linux computers, there is something to be said for leaving a computer on except when thunderstorms are in the area. And certainly something to be said for having AVR (automatic voltage regulation) or line conditioning Battery backups/UPSes for your computers which can help to keep any computer alive and well longer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You wouldn't run your car outside in the driveway all night while you were sleeping..

You would if it were winter and you lived in Lapland. :hysterical:

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have never understood that mentality. Sorry. :(

 

Later...

 

More wear & tear on the hard drive - that's why. I leave my system running 24x7 unless I am going to be away for a few days, then I shut it down complete. No hibernate, no sleep, none of that foo foo business.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've lost more hard drives and data shutting down being "green" than I can count. Terabytes. One was a drive that Seagate's utilities said had the correct firmware revision but it still bricked after a shutdown overnight. If hibernation worked a bit better I'd use that more but I don't want a 6GB hibernation file on my SSD that only has 14GB free.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...