80 Plus Power Supply Certifications, What Do They Mean?

How much power are you wasting when you boot up your PC? The 80 Plus certifications aim to give consumers an understanding of just how energy efficient their power supplies.

As the name implies, a power supply that receives an 80 Plus certification is able to present efficiency of 80% or more. The certification comes in 6 different classifications:

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We’ll come to explain which categories certain power supplies fall into later in the article.

To put things into context, if you have a a PC that consumes 250W and a power supply with 75% efficiency, that means you’re using and paying for 333W from the wall. If the same PC had a power supply with an 85% efficiency, it would only pull 294W from the wall, saving 39W when compared to the power supply with 75% efficiency. Ultimately, you’re going to save money on your electricity bills!

dabs.com always recommends its customers to buy a power supply with double the power than they are actually going to pull. This is why manufacturers offer power supplies of over 1500W, they don’t expect you to be pulling full power from the unit but to be running it at about 50% capacity for ultimate efficiency.

In the long run, buying a power supply with double the power means that your computer will run cooler, plus you’ll have a bit of room to upgrade your components should you need to in the near future. You also shouldn’t face any stability problems if playing games at maximum quality for hours.

Different Certifications

You’ll be able to see the difference between the 6 certifications below. The tests shown below are carried out in an environment that might differ from the ones you experience at home.

Non-redundant power supplies are tested at 115v and use the table below:

115 V Non-Redundant 10% Load (Ultra Light) 20% Load (Light) 50% Load (Typical) 100% Load (Full) Power Factor
80 Plus Standard NA 80% 80% 80% 0.90 at 50%
80 Plus Bronze NA 82% 85% 82% 0.90 at 50%
80 Plus Silver NA 85% 88% 85% 0.90 at 50%
80 Plus Gold NA 87% 90% 87% 0.90 at 50%
80 Plus Platinum NA 90% 92% 89% 0.95 at 50%
80 Plus Titanium 90% 92% 94% 90% 0.95 at 20%

We’re keen to hear your experiences with power supply’s. Do you run one that’s double what you require or are you maxing it out?

If you’re in the market for a new power supply, click here. 

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