Atx 250w Psu

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Thread Starter
Apr 19, 2004
I have a question about the wattage on ATX PSUs. I have read several different forums on different computer related websites. I keep seeing posts related to different problems where the Wattage on the PSU is brought up. I have an ATX 250W PSU and I bought my system peice by peice and put it together myself several months ago. My original MB gave out on me a few months ago. My fiance sprayed the inside of my computer with canned air and it booted a few more times after that and finally it quit responding. I did all the troubleshooting, such as taking out the MB and putting it on a non-static surface with only the Video, RAM, and CPU. I bought a new MB last month and everything is running fine thus far. When I was looking on ABIT's forums, I seen postings about the wattage on the PSU and how if you have too little wattage or too much damage can occur to your system.

Could someone enlighten me on the Wattage of PSUs and when it matters? Also, do I need to get a different PSU for this system?

My system specs:
AMD Athalon XP 2500+ 1.83GHz
333 mhz FSB
2 512mb offbrand PCI 2700 RAM w/Dual Channeling Enabled
NF7-S ABIT MB w/NForce2 Ultra400 + MCP-T Raid disabled
AOPEN ATX Tower w/250W PSU
GeForce4 MX 440 w/AGP8x PCI
Creative SOundBlaster Live 5.1
WD 80GB Ultra ATA w/8MB Cache
WD 20GB Ultra ATA
SONY DVD/CDRW combo drive
Oct 18, 2003
Roughly, I would say: "yes". Your power supply is the backbone of your system and provides/generates the electricity to power your system (being a non-engineer, that's my best description).

If you wish to find out how many watts you will need, go to

For brands I would recommend, I like Antec and Enermax. My view is not to skimp on this because it is the backbone, after all. :)
Aug 15, 2002
I would say yes, you need a new PSU, with all the stuff you have in there, each one takes up a little bit of the power, especially the CPU, 250 isn't much for a system like that. When buying a PSU, you generally get what you pay for, buying a 450w drive for $20 usually means that it won't be able to generate all 450w for a long time, probably only a few seconds...a 300w PSU from a good brand, like Sparkle, will often perform better than a cheap PSU, so choose wisely, and make sure you read reviews on the PSU before you buy it.
Nov 7, 2002
Get a new PSU.

If its an old high quality PSU you technically wouldn't need to replace it (you would be on the edge) but its would be a good idea anyway to get a larger psu.
(I have been using an old 235watt psu, with burner, dvd, dual hard drives and lots of other crap for years without issue but the power supply is old and underrated, which is rare nowdays)

If its a new psu 250watts is FAR too little as that is normally the MAX rating, a good bet is to always have at LEAST 300watts for any athlon system, usually 400 is much better as you are safe.

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