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The underdog of gaming PCs has to be the humble power supply unit (PSU). You computer’s power supply can’t produce the blistering speeds of the latest Ryzen processor or blow your mind with life like ray tracing like the latest RTX series GPU. All a PSU can do is power these things. A great PSU will never be noticed. It just efficiently and quietly powers all of your components, RGB lighting, and peripherals.
However, a bad PSU can fry your motherboard or other costly components. Many gamers are tempted to skimp on quality on a PSU to cut costs, but we would argue that a reliable and efficient power supply is one of the most important components of a PC.
In this article, we will be examining the 5 best PSU brands in 2021. We will be investigating not only the brands, but their best premium, mid-tier, and budget power supplies. This will give you the confidence you need in choosing your next PSU.
But before we get started, one thing to remember when looking at a new PSU is that the wattage, efficiency, and reliability is often more important than the brand. There are only a handful of PSU OEMs, so the label on the side might not matter as much as you think it does.
With that being said, our top 5 PSU brands deliver consistent quality no matter your budget.
What to Look for in a PSU
Purchasing the right PSU for your PC can be rather confusing. There are scores of brands and models with varying wattages, fan types, and efficiencies. Each brand and model has its devotees, so making heads and tails of reviews can seem overwhelming.
To make sense of things, we recommend looking at four different pieces: required wattage, efficiency, form factor, and warranty. There are certainly more nuanced aspects of PSUS, such as 12V rails and circuit layout designs, but these are factors typically reserved for more advanced and extreme PC builders.
The first thing you need to do is determine your required wattage. Many power supplies have received bad press because the builder didn’t match the right wattage with their needs, so this is a critical calculation. There are a lot of easy to use wattage calculators available that can help you figure out your wattage needs.
However, the average gamer in 2021 will require between a 600 to 850W PSU. Budget gamers can get by on as low as 450W, while extreme overclocking gamers running multiple graphics cards with the latest Ryzen CPU and 64GB+ of RAM may need 1000W+.
It should be noted that very few gamers will actually need more than 850W. Also, it’s always better to pad your wattage by 50 to 100W as not all PSUs will deliver their advertised wattage, and you may want to upgrade your components at some point.
The second thing to look at on a new PSU is the efficiency rating. There are a lot of great guides on the internet that can explain this more fully, but there are six primary efficiency ratings available: 80 PLUS, 80 PLUS Bronze, 80 PLUS Silver, 80 PLUS Gold, 80 PLUS Platinum, and 80 PLUS Titanium.
This rating system simply means that the PSU will have an efficiency rating of at least 80% or higher. The higher the rating is, the higher the efficiency, and cost. The majority of PSUs available in 2021 will be rated at 80 PLUS Bronze, Gold, or Platinum/Titanium.
Thirdly, make sure you purchase a PSU with the right form factor. It’s going to be very difficult, if not impossible, to mount an ATX PSU in a Mini ITX case. Even if you have the right form factor, it’s always a good idea to double check dimensions before purchasing as several manufacturers now make “compact” ATX PSUs.
The last thing to look at with a new PSU is the warranty. Typically, budget PSUs will have a 2-5 year warranty, mid-tier PSUs will have a 5 to 10 year warranty, and premium PSUs will have 10+ year warranties.
Factoring in the warranty is important, as a quality PSU should last you 5 to 10 years of typical use. If a PSU fails, you’ll want to make sure that you’re covered.
The Best PSU Brands in 2021
We’ve put together a list of our top 5 PSU brands that currently sell the best power supply units. With each brand, we’ve chosen a budget model, a mid-tier model, and a premium model to meet your gaming needs.
As mentioned above, always make sure that the PSU you are buying is the right form factor for your case. All of these PSUs will be compatible with the ATX form factor. We have done our best to provide quality recommendations for each tier, but the greatest quality of PSU tends to follow the wattage, efficiency ratings, and price point.
Let our guide be a starting point in your research as you determine the best product for your next build.
If you’re at all familiar with power supplies, then you’ll know that Seasonic, along with SuperFlower, is one of the top PSU OEMs on the market. Seasonic started making power supplies in the early 1980s, so they have 40 years of experience behind their products.
They also produce PSUs for many of the major brands on the market, such as Corsair and EVGA, and are recognized worldwide for consistent quality and dependability. Because of this, they are our number one choice.
Seasonic stands behind their products as well. They are one of the few PSU manufacturers that offer a 12 year warranty on several of their units. While the majority of their power supplies are around the 5 to 10 year warranty, a company that boasts warranties this long shows that they are confident in their build quality.
Seasonic PRIME TX-1000, 1000W Titanium
”Best Premium PSU From Seasonic”
One of the best PSUs available in 2021, the Seasonic PRIME TX-1000 represents the pinnacle of quality power supplies. We would hope so too – this PSU will likely cost you a small fortune. This PSU supplies 1000W of power which should provide even the most extreme of gamers with adequate wattage.
The Seasonic PRIME TX-1000 is fully modular and boasts one of the best warranties we’ve seen – a remarkable 12 years of protection. As this PSU is rated at 80 Plus Titanium, you can expect efficiencies of 94% at 50% load. You can also expect much higher efficiencies at lower loads than Gold or Platinum rated power supplies.
The PRIME TX-1000 is also extremely quiet. With a rated 15db noise level your GPU fans will likely be louder. The dependability and efficiency of this PSU should make it a top pick for gamers that want the best in their PC.
Seasonic FOCUS GX-750
”Best Mid-tier PSU From Seasonic”
The Seasonic FOCUS GX-750 is a fantastic mid-tier 750W PSU for gamers that need the wattage to power all but the most extreme of PC builds. This PSU is fully modular and comes with an impressive 10 year warranty. The only con we could find is that the cabling is a bit stiff, so this can make cable management somewhat difficult, but not impossible.
With an 80 Plus Gold rating, you can expect efficiencies of 90% at a 50% load. This means that the 140mm fan will run smoothly and quietly. Coming in with a fair price tag, the Seasonic FOCUS provides dependable quality for a reasonable price.
Seasonic S12III 550W
”Best Budget PSU From Seasonic”
Our budget pick for Seasonic is the S12III 550W. This is a very popular PSU for gamers that are on a budget, but still want quality. Typically running well under $75, the S12III will take care of your needs while still leaving money for your GPU. The 5 year warranty will also give you peace of mind in the event of a failure.
This 550W power supply comes with an 80 Plus Bronze rating with a reported 85% efficiency rating at 50% load. Many budget power supplies are noisy under load, but the S21III surprised us with its quiet 120mm fan. Even under a high load, it stayed relatively silent and unobtrusive. This a PSU that simply does its job with no need of recognition.
The only major downside that we could find is that the non-modular cable will make cable management more difficult, but this is not uncommon with budget power supplies. All in all this is one of our favorite PSUs under $100.
EVGA is a well known brand in the gaming PC space. Founded in 1999, EVGA started as a motherboard and GPU company, but have since expanded to producing PSUs and a variety of other PC components. Known for quality and budget friendly products, EVGA is our second choice in our top 5 PSU brands.
They boast a similar warranty as the other brands with most PSUs around 3-5 years, and a handful with 7 to 10 year warranties. If you do need to make use of one of their warranties, EVGA has some of the best customer service available.
They also offer their famous Step Up program which allows gamers to easily upgrade a component within 90 days of purchasing. As new products are constantly being released, this will allow you to return and upgrade your EVGA component with relative ease.
EVGA SuperNOVA 1000 T2
”Best Premium PSU From EVGA”
Our premium pick for EVGA is the SuperNOVA 1000 T2. This 1000W PSU is SLI Ready if you plan to run multiple graphics cards. Like many other PSUs on this list, it features an Eco mode so that the 140mm fan won’t kick on under low to medium loads.
With an 80 Plus Titanium rating, you will be getting efficiencies of 94% or higher and can expect quiet operation under typical loads.
This PSU also comes with a 10 year warranty and heavy duty industrial protections. It is cheaper than our other 1000W picks, and you should be able to purchase one for far less than the Seasonic PRIME. This fully modular PSU may not be flashy, but it does what a good power supply should: provides dependable and efficient power for your ultimate gaming PC.
EVGA SuperNOVA 750 P2
”Best Mid-tier PSU From EVGA”
The EVGA 750 P2 is a fully modular PSU that offers 750W of power and an 80 Plus Platinum efficiency rating. For a PSU under $200, the efficiency rating alone makes it a great choice for mid-tier PCs.
The SuperNova 750 P2 is very similar to its 1000W cousin, and will provide the same great features, but at about half the price. It’s outfitted with a 140mm double ball bearing fan that has the same Eco mode to keep your PSU virtually silent under typical loads.
With a 10 year warranty and high quality Japanese capacitors, you can count on it to keep your PC running for years to come.
EVGA 600 BR
”Best Budget PSU From EVGA”
Our EVGA budget selection is the 600 BR PSU as it provides 600W of dependable power. This PSU comes with an 80 Plus Bronze certification with 85% or higher efficiency. A 120mm long sleeve bearing fan will keep the fan quiet under typical loads.
The only downside to this PSU is that it’s non-modular and only comes with a 3 year warranty. However, at its price point, these features aren’t too surprising. This PSU is for budget gamers that need more than the typical 450W “budget” power supplies while keeping costs minimal.
It’s also great for budget gamers that plan on purchasing a more power hungry CPU or GPU down the road without needing to also upgrade their PSU.
Long trusted for quality PC components, Corsair started as an L2 cache manufacturer before expanding to DRAM and later a variety of PC components. As they are partnered with Seasonic, their PSUs are consistently ranked as some of the best available. They’ve earned our number three on our list.
While Corsair produces excellent products, they appear to be a mixed bag in terms of customer support. They will honor their products, but we’ve found many reports that customer service is difficult to reach at times. Your experience with Corsair may, of course, vary with what we’ve seen.
With that being said, their PSUs are fantastic. They boast a similar warranty as the other brands with most PSUs around 3-5 years, and a handful with 7 to 10 year warranties.
”Best Premium PSU From Corsair”
Based on the Seasonic 1000W Titanium, the Corsair AX1000 delivers similar performance and power for the most extreme PC builders, and it is our premium Corsair choice. With an 80 Plus Titanium rating, you can expect 94% efficiency under typical loads. Because of the efficiency rating, you can also expect the 135mm fan to remain motionless under low to medium loads.
This is not a cheap PSU by any means. Clocking in around the same price as the Seasonic PRIME, the AX1000 is for gamers that view their PSU as an investment and perhaps the most critical piece of their PC.
With that price tag, you do get a 10 year warranty, should there ever be an issue. There are certainly other 1000W PSUs that run well under $400, but they may not come with the dependability or versatility of a Corsair product.
”Best Mid-tier PSU From Corsair”
Our mid-tier pick for Corsair is the RM750x. This 750W PSU offers performance and will meet the needs of most gamers. Tuned for quiet operation, it shouldn’t be noticeable even under high loads. With an 80 Plus Gold rating and Japanese capacitors, it is also very efficient and produces minimal heat.
The RM750x is also fully modular, but we’ve found that the shrinkwrap on the cabling is stiff and can be difficult to use. If you plan on using a smaller case, connecting the cabling may try your patience. We would recommend using at least a mid-sized case for this PSU.
The RM750x comes with a relatively high price tag, but with a 10 year warranty it will give you the peace of mind should the worse happen.
”Best Budget PSU From Corsair”
The Corsair CX550M is a great 550W PSU for budget gamers. It isn’t flashy, but it is a PSU that will consistently work, and won’t cost you an arm and a leg. With a thermally controlled 120mm fan, this PSU is also very quiet. The fan won’t run until it needs to, and it remains quiet even under a decent load.
Many budget PSUs are non-modular, but the CX550M is semi-modular, adding another level of quality and ease-of-use.
The CX550M is an 80 Plus Bronze PSU, which is expected for a budget PSU. With a suite of protections, such as OVP and UVP, you can game with confidence. It also comes with a 5 year warranty in the case of a complete failure. This is a great pick for budget to mid-tier gamers.
Thermaltake is well known for their PC cooling products and power supplies. Founded in 1999, Thermaltake primarily produces cases, coolers, and PSUs, but has also recently expanded to other PC components and peripherals.
While RGBs certainly aren’t exclusive to Thermaltake, a large majority of their products do feature high quality RGB lighting. If lighting is as important to you as quality, then a Thermaltake power supply is a great choice.
Like Corsair, they are a mixed bag in terms of reported customer support. Many of Thermaltake’s PSUs boast at least a 5 year warranty while a few of the higher end power supplies have up to a 10 year warranty.
They still produce quality PSUs and should provide you with a product that works great while looking great.
Thermaltake Toughpower PF1 ARGB 1200W
”Best Premium PSU From Thermaltake”
The highest wattage PSU on our list, the Toughpower PF1 ARGB 1200W will provide you all the power you will need, and then some. This PSU is based on a similar case design as the GF1 ARGB, and offers a beautiful RGB display on the top of the unit. With 18 addressable LEDs and over 16 million advertised colors, it will be the cornerstone of your PC’s lighting display.
The fully modular PF1 ARGB 1200W is rated at 80 Plus Platinum, and you can expect an efficiency of 92% under a typical load. Boasting a 140mm fan, Japanese capacitors, and industrial protections, this PSU will stay cool even under a high load.
With a 10 year warranty, it should outlast the latest generation of GPUs. This PSU is slightly cheaper than the Seasonic and Corsair 1000W PSUs, but it’s still an expensive investment.
Thermaltake Toughpower GF1 ARGB 750W
”Best Mid-tier PSU From Thermaltake”
The Thermaltake Toughpower GF1 ARGB 750W PSU is a great pick for gamers that want quality RGB lighting and enough wattage to power their mid-tier PC build. As mentioned above, this PSU is essentially the same as the PF1 ARGB 1200W in terms of RGB lighting, but at a fraction of the cost.
You can expect 90% efficiency with it’s 80 Plus Gold rating. With a 140mm fan, Japanese capacitors, industrial protections, and a 10 year warranty, the GF1 ARGB 750W will provide you with a very efficient PSU under $200. It is also fully modular, allowing you freedom of cable management.
Thermaltake Toughpower GX1 RGB 500W
”Best Budget PSU From Thermaltake”
Our budget pick for Thermaltake is the Toughpower GX1 RGB 500W. While it doesn’t support the same depth of RGB options as its cousins, this PSU still offers RGB lighting for the budget gamer. Unlike most other budget PSUs, it also boasts a 80 Plus Gold efficiency rating. For less than $100, an efficiency rating above Bronze is impressive.
The GX1 RGB 500W is equipped with Japanese capacitors and a 120mm hydraulic bearing fan to keep heat to a minimum. It also boasts a 5 year warranty, which is relatively high for a PSU at this price point. We would recommend the GX1 RGB 500W to any budget gamers that are looking for quality and admirable RGB lighting.
5. Cooler Master
Our last pick for the best PSU Brands in 2021 is Cooler Master. Long accepted as an industry standard for cooling options, Cooler Master provides quality without destroying your budget. Cooler Master is also an OEM manufacturer for major companies like NVIDIA and AMD.
Like the other companies on this list, Cooler Master is expanding their product line and now make a wide variety of PC components and accessories.
While we love Cooler Master products, they do have the shortest warranty periods on this list. All of our picks have a 5 year warranty, but many of their other products only have a 2 to 3 year warranty.
If long-term support is important to you, as it should be, then double check your Cooler Master PSUs warranty before purchasing.
Cooler Master MWE Gold 850 V2
”Best Premium PSU From Cooler Master”
The MWE Gold 850 V2 is our pick for a premium PSU from Cooler Master. While it may not boast the same wattage as our other premium picks, 850W is still enough power to take care of your brand new RTX3090.
As expected, this premium PSU is fully modular and sports a 120mm hydro-dynamic fan to keep your PC cool and quiet.
One of the things that makes this PSU premium is the inclusion of 2 EPS connectors, giving your universal compatibility regardless of your PC’s components.
With the second version of this PSU, they also improved the heat resilience to 50℃, allowing overclockers the ability to push their system to the max. Coming in under $200, the MWE Gold 850 V2 is a premium PSU without the cost.
Cooler Master MasterWatt 750W
”Best Mid-tier PSU From Cooler Master”
Our mid-tier choice for Cooler Master, is the MasterWatt 750W PSU. This PSU is under $100 and is very similar in specifications to the other MasterWatt products. One of the selling points of the MasterWatt line is the inclusion of a 16AWG PCIe cable. This equates to lower resistance and more reliable power for your GPU.
With an 80 PLUS Bronze efficiency rating and a 120mm fan, your power supply should stay relatively cool and quiet. It is also fanless up to a 15% load, keeping fan noise to a minimum with light usage. This is a great mid-tier pick for moderate gamers.
Cooler Master MasterWatt 550W
”Best Budget PSU From Cooler Master”
Finally, we have the Cooler Master MasterWatt 550W PSU. At around $75, this PSU will provide quality for budget gamers. With the exception of the wattage and a few nuanced aspects, this model is exactly the same as its more powerful 750W cousin.
With a minimal price difference between the two models, we would recommend this if you know for a fact that the 750W model would be overkill for your build.
These were our choices for the 5 best PSU brands in 2021. While each brand and PSU has its pros and cons, any of these products should meet your gaming needs.
Feel free to reach out to us if you need further assistance with your next PC build. We love hearing from our readers and want to support you in your gaming journey.