Quote: Originally Posted by abyoung35
What should I be looking for? I know the more 12v rails the.better and the platinum certified thing, what else? How can I add all my stuff together to tell?
Other than the 12 volt rail, about all you can do is look for a quality manufacturer and a good efficiency rating. A highly efficient PSU might save you 5 dollars a year in power costs.
There aren't many quality manufacturers. Most PSUs are not made by the name on the label. They are built by one of a few subcontractors according to the specifications of the contract---to hit a certain price point or market segment.
Most of the power draw on modern PCs is through the 12 volt rail. A rating of 30 amps on the 12 volt rail equates to 360 watts (12 x 30).
The good PSUs can run at their rated maximums for long periods of time. Cheesy PSUs can't.
Good manufacturers can make excellent PSUs or average PSUs or poor PSUs--to meet whatever specs they are asked to meet by the brand. The PSUs that manufacturers sell under their own name are typically their best technology since the brand name is at stake. AMD's Phenom II X4 955 processor - The Tech Report - Page 1
Above link says the TDP of your processor is 125 watts
Add in your own figures for the 2 video cards: ASUS ATI Radeon HD 5870 (x2 in Crossfire @ 158w ea)
That's 441 watts.
The rest of it can be estimated.
Hard drives use under 10 watts.
The last figures I saw for motherboards were 20 or 30 watts.
DVD drives maybe 20 when in use.
RAM sticks maybe 10
Fans a couple of watts.
Above estimated figures for components are from 5 or 6 years ago and may be higher than current technology?
So maybe 600 watts under extreme load and a lot less most of the time.
For 15 or 20 bucks you can buy a Kill-a-watt and connect the PC to it to see what it actually draws under various conditions.
It will probably use less than your estimates most of the time.
Here is a sample set of specs, for the Seasonic fanless 400 and 460 watt models. The "+12v" column is the important one.