View Full Version : My computer has imploded (advice on power supply units wanted)

16-12-2004, 00:40:17
The other day my computer died. It was working fine, I went down to the kitchen to make a cup of coffee, I came back and the computer was off, and was unable to be turned back on. Well, maybe not exactly off. The little green power light was still on, but the monitor was doing it's "there is no signal, please plug me into a computer, moron" thing, and there didn't seem to be any noise of disks, fans, etc. Held power button for 10 seconds to turn it off, turning it back on gave no response whatsoever (not even the little green LED).

The power point and power cable are both fine, (and the power cables inside the box all look okay to the naked eye too) leading me to infer that the power supply is dead. Anything else and I'd at least get the computer turning on and then beeping at me, right?

Now. I know next to nothing about PSUs. What should I be aware of if I'm to be going out and buying a new one? (I'm not entirely happy with the plan of just walking into a store that sells computer bits with the dead one and asking for one that isn't dead) As far as I can tell, the important bit of information printed on the top of my ex-PSU is "ATX-320", and I don't even know what that means. It's a 320W power supply?

Advice would be greatly appreciated.

16-12-2004, 00:56:44
Yep. And get a bigger PSU then what was in it when you replace it.

Ash, SP, ZMama and the others will be along shortly to give you serious information and advice.

16-12-2004, 05:53:57
Personally, I don't buy anything other than Antec when it comes to PSUs. I know you aren't in the states, but I would get something like this if I was in your situation: http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=17-103-906&depa=0

Maybe you can find something of similar sorts through an Australian retailer.

16-12-2004, 07:43:03
Antec PSUs seem to do a good job. They all feel like they weigh a ton, even the 300W PP-303 I had a few years ago. The main difference between the True and the SL series is that the True has fan-only connectors to turn case fans at low RPM. And I think the SL lacks SATA connectors, though this isn't a problem if you have adapters.

16-12-2004, 09:55:13
I got a really meaty/overkill one at a good price, from these folk a couple of years back. (http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Products.ASP?CatID=33&Category=Power+Supply&Thumbnails=yes) All went fine, still going strong.

Not sure there's much to advise on, not that I've studied them. But I think they're fairly standard. (Unless your existing PC is non-standard that is.) Just make sure you buy one more than capable of supplying all those additional boards / drives you put in.

Sir Penguin
16-12-2004, 10:05:12
Do you have something you can use to check current to make sure that it's your power supply (like a voltmeter or something)? If the green LED's not on then you're probably right in thinking it's a power supply problem, but there's a chance it could be the motherboard, too. Or both.


16-12-2004, 12:19:14
Or even easier...borrow a power supply from another computer and see if you can power up. Thats what I did.

Antec, Thermaltake, Fortron, Vantec, Zalman...all good brands. Antec is considered by most to be the best but I just bought a Thermaltake and am very happy with it.

Get at least an Antec truepower 380w...400w and above would be better.

Sir Penguin
17-12-2004, 00:43:34
Enermax is good, too.

I don't buy the "get the most powerful PS you can" argument. Is your computer really going to last that long?


17-12-2004, 01:45:46
Look here....

The shop I use is in Glenhuntly road..

17-12-2004, 01:55:05
For mine the $30 one would be fine...
If it packs in in the next 12 months, buying another is still cheaper than the big brand names..

17-12-2004, 14:16:24
So long as it doesn't take anything else with it when it dies. This is my terror of not getting power supplies right. But other than that your logic is very attractive...

17-12-2004, 21:06:15
Well tell us what you have on your computer...the cpu, how many hard drives, how many optical drives, what video card?

17-12-2004, 21:33:36
Originally posted by Sir Penguin
Enermax is good, too.

I don't buy the "get the most powerful PS you can" argument. Is your computer really going to last that long?


If you are going to use it for anything other then cutting edge games, it can.

My sister has just decided to step up from a Pentium 2 - 400 Mhz machine that I gave her several years ago when I moved up. It was fine for getting her on the net for surfing and email and what not... it even handled the Sims. It's her wanting to play the Sims 2 thats motivated her to step up to something "modern". She's replaced the CD rom in the computer twice, but other then that, the hardward has lasted all that time.

Sir Penguin
18-12-2004, 00:03:15
What I mean is that if you're going to make such a huge upgrade that your power supply isn't going to be able to handle it, you might as well buy a whole new computer and sell the old one as a unit.