If people consider the CPU to be the brain of the PC then its fair to assume the power supply is the heart! Having adequate power to support your rig is a must-have and everyone wants to find the best PSU for gaming. We’ve got a pretty good selection of the best power supplies for you here, so keep reading and find the perfect PSU for your needs.
Ultimately, what PSU you select here depends on your power consumption requirements and budget. We’ll go over the recommendations first before providing the tools and information you need to make the best choice when building a gaming PC so that by the end you should be able to leave with the best PSU for your build.
Our 5 Best Power Supplies For Gaming
This PSU is geared towards more high-end systems and that is largely down to its 750W capacity and Gold level certification.
You are getting a fully modular PSU, with a more compact size than its previous iteration, giving you a bit of extra room for cable management. This PSU also comes with Zero RPM Fan Mode and features incredible acoustic performance.
This 1000W PSU from Seasonic features incredible efficiency and reliability to form one of the best power supplies on the market.
The Seasonic Prime TX-1000 is a fine example of high-quality power supplies. This features some of the best acoustic performance we have seen from a fanned PSU, with near-silent operation.
Yes, this is rather expensive but for many that need to power the extreme high-end of PC builds, this will be a steal and offer you the reliability you just can’t get from many competitors.
This 650W Smart Pro RGB option from Thermaltake is the perfect way to add a little extra flair to your next gaming PC.
The moderately priced Smart Pro RGB PSU from Thermaltake is the perfect companion for anyone building a budget to mid-range system. This offers 650W of power, which is generally enough for the mid-range bracket and below but also comes with a glowing ring of RGB lighting.
RGB is hardly an important feature but for those looking to add a bit of extra style, you can’t go wrong with this PSU.
The Seasonic Focus SGX-500 is an SFX-L form factor and brings all the power your mini system is going to need into a compact chassis.
For an SFF PSU, the SGX-500 is well priced. This model comes from the ever so reliable manufacturers Seasonic and features an 80+ Gold certification, bringing you high-levels of efficiency.
The acoustic performance on this PSU is also quite good, allowing you quiet operation under load but it can be a little noisy when under a high load.
The CX450M from Corsair is a fine budget PSU for gaming. This semi-modular PSU is an excellent choice for anyone building their next budget to mid-range PC.
When it comes to the budget territory you want to ensure you go for a reliable brand such as Corsair. The CX450M is going to keep delivering power to your system for years without a hitch and its semi modularity simplifies the building process for you too.
All of the power supplies on this list have been hand-selected for a reason. First and foremost, we conducted a search to discover which PSUs gamers tend to prefer while trying to balance those with the highest reviews against those with the lowest price tags.
Reviews from various manufacturers were taken into account, as well as reviews from others in the PC gaming industry.
Next, we get our hands on as many of our recommendations as possible so we can see the build quality up close and test how easy they are to install.
Finding the best PSU for your needs can be a bit painful at times, there are so many options to choose from that it can become a bit of a headache. What wattage should you go for? What’s the deal with efficiency? Oh and we haven’t even discussed modularity! Don’t worry, this section is going to break down the things you need to know in an easy to understand manner, ensuring you walk away with the best product for your PC.
Let’s take a look.
Quality is hugely important, no matter the budget or consumer needs.
This is because the primary purpose of a PSU is supplying your expensive components with precious power. Bad quality power supplies can feature poor efficiency and produce excessive noise due to anything from coils vibrating to a poorly constructed fan. Cheaper power supplies can also be manufactured with thinner metal housing, which allows passing vibrations to be sent to the PC case. Always go for reliable, well-built power supplies, with beefy warranties!
With this in mind, the selections in this article all represent trustworthy manufacturers in the PSU world that offer quality products, power efficiency, and decent warranties.
Passive Vs. Semi-Passive PSU
Power supplies are generally very efficient these days, but they aren’t perfect and can still produce some heat. A passive PSU (also known as a fanless PSU) cools by using massive heatsinks and superb efficiency. With no moving parts, a fanless PSU gives you true silent operation and should be considered for low power builds.
Semi-passive power supplies (or hybrid PSUs as they are commonly known) use fan profiles / zero fan mode to act only when needed. This means that the PSU fan will run at idle until a certain percentage of the load has been hit, at which point the fan begins to spin. The percentage varies across different models but in many cases, the PSU will remain silent until it gets to around 40% load.
Efficiency Rating And Meaning
Efficiency rating determines how effective your PSU is at managing power. The higher the efficiency, the less power consumed and the less excess heat generated.
It is always a good idea to work out the overall wattage of the gaming PC you are going to build.
Using our PSU Calculator, you should understand what your power needs are pretty quickly. If you find that the PSU you would like only just meets those power needs, we recommend buying one with a higher wattage to make sure there is no bottlenecking and you have something for future upgrades.
What many people find, however, is that PSU wattage needs for their system are lower than what they think. Run this tool before making a purchase!
Modularity primarily affects the building process and airflow. In short, it has no bearing on your PC gaming experience when you aren’t tampering with your PC.
Semi and Full Modular systems are significantly more convenient. As mentioned it also improves airflow and this is down to not have several cables you are not using clogging up the empty space inside the case. We highly recommend that you opt for a Semi or Full-Modular PSU regardless of your budget.
The 5 Best PSUs For Gaming
Very quiet while under load
Excellent build quality
Smaller than predecessor
Short distance between peripheral connectors
Our selection for the best PSU for gaming is from Corsairs highly regarded RMX-series, the RM750x PSU. This version comes with a few improvements on its previous iteration, which include a more compact form factor and quieter fan profile.
The Corsair RM750x, as you can probably tell, is a 750W version and comes with more than enough power for high-end builds. This PSU achieves 80+ Gold and ETA-A efficiency, with Cybenetics also rating this as LAMBDA-A+certification. The RM750x sports a max noise output of around 15 dBa, making it a viable PSU for silent focused builds, as long as you work out the correct power ratio and take advantage of the Zero RPM fan mode.
The RM750x PSU is fully modular and comes with two EPS connectors and four PCIe connectors. Full-modularity isn’t a massive selling point but it can make the overall building process a bit easier and stops you from having to cable manage unused cables that you can often get with non-modular.
Regardless of whether you want extra power for a silent gaming PC or adequate power for a top of the line gaming rig, the Corsair RM750x should see you through.
While the Seasonic PRIME TX-series offers some of the best power supplies on the market, their hefty price and large wattage make them less ideal for hardcore games, meaning this misses out on the top spot but is easily one of the best high-end PSUs out there.
This Seasonic PRIME TX PSU features a 1000W capacity and is going to be overkill for most high-end systems. That being said, for those that require 800+ wattage, this makes a lot of sense thanks to its incredible Titanium level efficiency, low temperatures at full power, and near-silent operation. The Prime TX-series features PSU models from 600W all the way up to the 1000W model we have here and achieved ETA-A+ efficiency and LAMBDA-A++ noise levels on Cybenetics. What is most impressive from this PSU is its silent operation, with it managing under 15 dBa overall. It owes this silent operation from its sheer efficiency that is backed up by the hybrid fan control.
This TX-1000 is fully modular, limiting clutter in your case and generally making your life a bit easier when it comes to powering your system. Included, we see two EPS connectors for higher powered systems and two SATA 3.3 supporting connectors too.
Unless you have the most power-hungry gaming PC out there, many won’t go wrong with the Seasonic PRIME TX-1000, a powerful and efficient masterclass in PSUs.
Reliable and efficient PSU
RGB fan with semi-passive operation
Aggressive fan profile
Single EPS connector
The Thermaltake Smart Pro RGB 650W PSU is one of the best in its class when it comes to additional custom lighting. Alongside the impressive aesthetics, you are still getting a reliable power supply that can adequately manage power for mid to high-end gaming PCs.
The Thermaltake Smart Pro PSU here would be great for any mid-range build thanks to its 650W capacity. This will probably be more wattage than needed for most in the mid-range category but it does give you a bit of headroom should you choose to upgrade later down the line. This model features 80+ Bronze certification, so isn’t as efficient as the more premium options above but it still holds up as a well-priced alternative. This PSU achieves ETA-S efficiency and LAMBDA-S+ noise levels according to Cybenetics. The RGB fan with this PSU isn’t just a pretty face, it also comes with zero RPM fan options, helping you keep those noise levels down as much as possible.
With quality capacitors, different lighting options, and more than adequate efficiency levels, you are getting a high-quality PSU for a very affordable price. This RGB PSU is the perfect way to add a bit of flair to your next budget build, with plenty of headroom for future upgrades down the line.
Excellent build quality
Reliable PSU with high performance
Fan is quite loud when under high load
For a more compact PSU, this SFF PSU from Seasonic offers great performance at a fair price. Alongside the high-level build quality we have come to expect from Seasonic power supplies, the SGX-500 features full modularity and an impressive 10-year warranty.
This particular model comes with a 500W capacity but Seasonic also has a 650W option for those looking to build a more powerful SFF gaming PC. This Focus SGX power supply comes with an 80+ Gold certification for efficiency and even under a tough load, this will stay below 40 degrees. What is most impressive about this compact PSU is its ability to perform highly while simultaneously outputting low noise levels that are rated as LAMBDA-S++ on Cybenetics.
The cables that come with the Seasonic Focus SGX-500 are short but this is common practice for SFX and SFX-L power supplies. This comes with an EPS connector and everything else you are going to need but it would have been nice for Seasonic to provide an extra SATA cable.
You are getting a compact PSU that is highly reliable and should support your mini system to no end. When it comes to power supplies, Seasonic is often a recommended brand, and this fully modular option is going to be the perfect fit.
Our budget option is marginally more expensive than some of our competitor’s picks but makes a huge change to the building experience by going Semi-Modular. In addition to being Semi-Modular, the overall build quality seems to be much higher on this PSU than some of its rivals and it comes with the added bonus of being 80+ Bronze.
The primary benefit that Semi-Modular offers over a Non-Modular solution is that most of the cables can be removed. The cables that are hard-wired are required in almost every gaming build and semi-modular will save you money when compared to fully modular.
Since you’ll only be connecting the cables you need, your cable management and building process should be much easier. Good cable management allows good airflow, preventing long-term cooling issues within your PC.
Additionally, the 450W may be the lowest of the recommendations, but it’s more than suitable for beginner PCs, as well as most mid-tier ones.
We’ll cover how to calculate your wattage needs down below, but know that this PSU is a solid option.
Finding the best PSU for gaming doesn’t have to be a choir, in fact, once you know what you are looking for the PSU is a rather easy component to save yourself some money. When purchasing, remember for low to mid-range systems, you can select any PSU from our list of recommendations and game contently. For higher-end builds ensure you select one with sufficient wattage and connectors to support your CPU and GPU.
Hopefully, this has helped you make an informed choice and taken some of the anxiety away from choosing the correct one. Let us know how you got on with your purchase below!