The power supply is a key component in every computer build, and knowing which one you have is very important.
You cannot upgrade specific components in your build without knowing exactly which power supply you have and how powerful it is.
Fortunately, there are multiple ways of checking your power supply’s model, and we’ll show them all in the guide below.
Without further ado, let’s get started.
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Method 1: Physically Checking Your PSU
One of the safest ways to check which PSU model you have and how powerful it is, is by physically inspecting it inside your computer’s case.
If your case has a glass panel on one of the sides, you can easily peek through it and see the model and power of the PSU you’re currently using.
Otherwise, if it’s a regular case without glass, you’ll have to unscrew a few things, open it manually, then put it back together. Make sure to take a photo of the PSU or write down the information, so you don’t end up forgetting the model while assembling your case back together.
Note: Opening your computer’s case will instantly void the warranty, so if you recently purchased your computer as a pre-built rig, we suggest skipping this method and moving over to one of the other ones listed below. Voiding your warranty is not recommended.
If you still keep all of the boxes you received with your computer’s purchase, regardless if it’s pre-built or you bought the parts separately, you can usually find all the information you need on the package in which you received the PSU.
Method 2: Inspect The List Of Components (Warranty)
If you don’t want to void your warranty, or you just don’t feel confident enough to disassemble your computer’s case, the next best way to get information about your PSU’s exact model is by inspecting the list of components you received with the purchase.
For those who bought a pre-built rig, your list of components, which also serves as a warranty, should contain all required information about each included component.
On it, you should be able to find at least the model of the PSU, although the wattage is also often included. Then, you can do a Google search for that particular model and find out more about it, including fixes and common problems that community members reported.
Method 3: Looking Up Your Rig On The Internet
This is another useful method for those who purchased a pre-built rig and don’t know the exact model of their PSU and have no list of components, yet cannot open the case because it will void the warranty.
If you know the name of the seller, or even better, the name of the rig you’ve purchased, visiting their website should be of great help as you’ll be able to find the model and hopefully all required information for the included parts.
For example, NZXT’s website features a pre-built computer section where customers can pick what seems to be the best choice for them based on different price categories. Even if you are very new to hardware and don’t know what’s included in your build, but you’re sure that you purchased your PC from them, you can open the website and look for the model based on the price you paid.
Then, reading more about that specific build should give you more than enough information about all parts included.
This is the case with many other brands that sell pre-built rigs, and chances are that a local, smaller business will also have a website with all components listed.
Why Should I Know My PSU Model?
If you’ve ever considered building your own PC, then you’ve probably heard the term “buying a cheap PSU will cost you a lot in the long run,” and you’re wondering whether that’s true or not.
Well, it is.
The power output of your PSU determines whether you’ll be able to upgrade to more power-hungry parts in the future. If you have a weaker power supply and purchase a power-hungry GPU, for example, you’ll experience a lot of problems while using your PC, such as a flashing screen, system freeze, blue screen of death, or your computer shutting down frequently.
Then, you’ll have to buy another PSU, which is already paying a lot.
So, before you upgrade any component in your system, it’s best to check whether your PSU can handle the change.
You can do this using one of the three power supply calculators listed below:
- Seasonic Power Supply Calculator
- Outervision Power Supply Calculator
- CoolerMaster Power Supply Calculator
If the result comes out as 500W, for example, we recommend purchasing a PSU that’s at least 50W or 100W more powerful than that. You shouldn’t risk being on the border between what’s acceptable or simply not enough.
Note: An online power supply calculator is not a hundred percent accurate, but it’s enough to get a rough representation of what you’ll need to supply your components with in case you’re making an upgrade or simply building your first PC by yourself.
Also, when it comes to purchasing a power supply, we always recommend investing a bit more, as a faulty PSU can permanently damage the more expensive parts in your system, such as your processor, graphics card, and motherboard.
Premium PSUs have better cooling systems, which should ensure it doesn’t stop working due to an unbearable temperature and are often modular, which is very important for those who care about aesthetics while building their rigs.
Knowing what model a specific component is in your system can be very easy, as long as we’re not talking about a power supply.
Unfortunately, while most hardware-inspecting programs can give you an accurate list of information in just a few seconds, that doesn’t apply to PSUs.
However, by spending a bit of time doing the research and using the methods listed in the guide above, you’ll be able to find out what type of power supply is included in your computer, which can often be crucial information.