One of the most crucial – albeit oft overlooked – components of the best computers is the power supply. It’s extremely important to set aside the time and money to get only the best PSU in your PC, as without a reliable unit, your high end components could be losing out on power and efficiency – not to mention the risk of catastrophic failure when using a faulty power supply.
A failing PSU is a nightmare waiting to happen and, when it starts to fail, the symptoms can be kind of difficult to identify at first. It could be as simple as lost power efficiency, or as blatant as your computer crashing and rebooting when you’re in the middle of a game. In rare cases, a faulty PSU can even start a fire in your home! So, knowing that, it’s only common sense to avoid all of that nonsense and just invest in the best PSU for your rig ahead of time, and with Black Friday deals popping up everywhere right now, there’s really no excuse not to.
Luckily, such an important component of your PC build has plenty of great options to suit your needs. There are powerful, high-capacity power supplies for beefy gaming rigs, or even some great budget options, if you’re trying to save some cash. There are even some of the best power supplies that are built to run extremely quietly. Whatever you need, these five power supplies – each tested and reviewed by us – will fill your needs flawlessly.
Best power supply: Corsair RM750x
The best all-around power supply for your needs
Form factor: ATX | Capacity: 750W | Efficiency rating: 80 Plus Gold | Modularity: Full | Warranty: 10-year
Zero-RPM fan mode
750w max capacity small for power gamers
The Corsair RM750x is the best all around power supply for your needs. On top of a 10 year warranty and an 80 Gold Plus efficiency rating, the Corsair has a fully modular cabling system. That means you only need to install the cables you need. Not having unused cables in your case is great for air-flow and for those who appreciate the value of good cable management.
Best budget power supply: EVGA 500 B1
Everything you need to get started
Form factor: ATX | Capacity: 500W | Efficiency rating: 80 Plus Bronze | Modularity: None | Warranty: 3-year
6 SATA cables
When you’re trying to keep the price of your PC similar to that of a console, you don’t want to blow a lot of your budget on a power supply. That’s where more economical options like the EVGA 500 B1 come in handy. This PSU is essentialist without neglecting the needs of its audience. For less than $50 USD, you can expect 500 watts of power transmitted through several SATA cables and two PCIe slots. A three-year warranty is merely icing on the cake.
Best silent power supply: be quiet! Straight Power 10
Form factor: ATX | Capacity: 400W – 700W | Efficiency rating: 80 Plus Gold | Modularity: Semi | Warranty: 5-year
Quiet ATX and EPS support
A little pricey across capacities
Power supply fans seem to run the loudest, and unlike case fans, they aren’t quickly swappable. Fortunately the Straight Power 10 line up runs nice a quiet. Options range from 400w to 700w, and they’re SLI and Crossfire certified. They also have a modular design, letting you use only the cables you absolutely need to use. It’s also low-profile, freeing up even more space inside your computer tower.
Best compact power supply: Silverstone SFX Series SST-SX550
Perfect for Micro ATX and Mini ITX PC builds
Form factor: SFX | Capacity: 550W | Efficiency rating: 80 Plus Gold | Modularity: None | Warranty: 3-year
ATX and EPS support
Limited number of connectors
Power supplies can occupy a ton of space in your desktop tower, however time has allowed for the units to get smaller while the power they emit only expands in magnitude. The Silverstone SX550 is almost half the size of other power supplies, so that you can better facilitate cables and airflow inside your computer. This makes it notably ideal for micro ATX and mini-ITX builds, though you could slide it into a mid- or full-size tower as well if you deem it necessary.
Best high capacity power supply: Corsair AX1500i
Form factor: EPS | Capacity: 1500W | Efficiency rating: 80 Plus Titanium | Modularity: Fully | Warranty: 10-year
Titanium efficiency rating
Huge price tag
This is an absolute monster of a power supply. This is for the serious builder who plans on powering multiple graphics cards, cooling systems, and perhaps a small village in rural North Dakota. It has the highest possible 80 Plus Titanium efficiency rating, and is fully modular so you only need to add the cables required by your build. If you have the money to go big, this is the power supply to get.
Gabe Carey has also contributed to this article