Last updated November, 2017
Choosing a power supply is a fairly simple task. In fact, it’s one of the quickest and easiest parts of the build. All you have to do is figure out how much power your GPUs will use and multiply that by the number of GPUs you plan to have (or even smarter, by the max number your motherboard can support). Then add another 250watts to account for all the other hardware in your mining rig and some extra. The extra power is needed because a PSU’s efficiency goes down the closer it gets to its max output.
For my mining rig, I have a 7 slot motherboard and am planning on 7 GPUs that will use around 65 watts each. Total GPU power usage is 455 watts, plus another 250 watts would be 700 watts. I will likely go with an 850 watt because they are a common size at a decent price and would allow for some changes in graphic cards if plans change. More on that when we get to the build portion of this series.
If you’re looking for a cheaper, but more technical, option for a mining power supply, check this out
Best PSUs for Mining Rigs
Seasonic X-850 Gold+ 850W Power Supply
Seasonic has building quality computer components for years. Their PSUs are rated as a Tier 1 product, meaning they are the highest quality. For your mining rig build, you can’t go wrong with a Seasonic Power Supply.
The Seasonic X-Series power supplies use high output conductive polymer capacitors for a 99% typical power factor output. Their honeycomb structure power supply case provides ultra ventilation from all directions helping the unit stay cool (in fact, some of their platinum rated units don’t even come with a fan). This 850W gold certified power supply uses a hybrid silent fan control that allows virtually silent operation under most conditions.
One thing we notice, compared with the EVGA units, is that the Seasonic only comes with a 5 year warranty (although in 5 years everything will likely be outdated – we’re talking computer parts here!)
EVGA SuperNOVA 850W 80+ Gold certified, 10 year warranty
EVGA is a Tier 1 power supply manufacturer, which means they are among the best at building high quality, high performance, high efficiency power supply units. That’s probably how they can offer a 10 year warranty!
This power supply from EVGA is a G2 unit. With a 10 year warranty and gold certification, this is a top choice among Ethereum miners. As a result, these units are often higher priced than the equivalent EVGA G3 series unit (which is newer and rated the same). If you can happen to find this G2 PSU at a decent price then definitely go for it!
EVGA SuperNOVA 850 G3, 80+ Gold Power Supply
The SuperNOVA line from EVGA has been receiving amazing reviews, and is a top choice among people building Ethereum mining rigs. EVGA is a Tier 1 company and builds their power supplies with the best of components.
This G3 power supply is the next version of the G2 series, with some small improvements and a smaller footprint. Most noticeable, however, is that the G3 is actually cheaper than the 850W G2 power supply (which doesn’t really make sense – maybe it’s a promotional offer). At any rate, this is the Power Supply unit I am choosing for my build.
It’s 90% efficient, and comes with a 10 year warranty.
It even comes with a Power ON Self Tester
Corsair HX1000 80 Plus Platinum Power Supply
This Corsair PSU costs a little more than the Gold certified ones, but since this is Platinum rated, that means it’s more efficient and uses less power. You’ll pay a little bit more, so it might not be worth it for a mining rig as it’s basically impossible to figure out how much more efficient this unit would be, and how much you’d save in power costs over a Gold certified. However, if given the choice, if this was on sale or the price was somehow basically the same, I’d choose the platinum rated power supply.
Corsair makes high quality PSUs with 100% Japanese 104 degree capacitors. Corsair is a Tier 1 company that is among the best on the market.
Corsair RM1000x Fully Modular 80+ Gold Certified
The Corsair RMx series of power supplies are Tier 1 units, meaning their among the highest rated in the industry. That makes them a rock solid choice for your mining equipment. Higher quality components means less down time which means more mining time and more money in your pockets from your bitcoin miner power supply.
The Corsair comes in units as small as 550W and as high as 1000W allowing you to choose the right supply for your build.
Built with 100% all Japanese capacitors, the Corsair RMx line ensures solid power delivery as well as long term reliability. It has a Zero RPM fan mode for virtually silent operation when you aren’t pulling huge amounts of power from it. Plus it comes with a 10 year warranty!
Quality of Power Supply Units
Luckily, there is an industry standard for rating power supplies. They use a Bronze/Silver/Gold/Platinum style rating system. Since you’ll be attaching up to $2000 of video cards to it, it’s best to stick with units that are rated as Gold or Platinum certified.
Size/Wattage of PSU
If you’re running a 6, 7, or even 8 GPU rig then you’ll be pushing the limits of available power supplies. A 1300watt Gold rated can cost a bundle so consider looking at 2 cheaper 750W Gold certified power supplies instead.
Semi-Modular or Fully Modular?
Traditional power supplies come with all the cables for attaching peripherals hardwired to the circuit board and sticking out from the power supply unit. This works, but can lead to a bunch of unused cables flopping around in the way of things, restricting airflow to parts of your computer build, or even rubbing against fans and other components.
A semi-modular power supply has a few of the essential cables hard wired (such as motherboard and hard drive power supply) while all the other cables are attached via connectors. This allows you to only plug in the cables you need to use and all the others can be put away in a box.
A fully-modular power supply doesn’t even have the essentials hard wired. These are especially great to get if you plan on using them as a second power supply unit in your mining rig. Since your rig only has one motherboard and one hard drive unit, the second PSU doesn’t need to have any cables attached except the power supplied to your GPUs.
Tier 1, Tier 2, What are Tiers?
Power Supply Units are rated by Tiers. But! Since Tiers are a third party rating system, none of the product listings every mention what Tier they are, so you have to go searching.
In our comparison charts and recommended power supply for mining rigs, we only list the top Tier 1 power supplies. We do this because we have so much money in GPUs attached to them! We want the best, most reliable, and also the highest quality components in our power supplies to keep our graphics cards from burning up. Plus, the top tier PSUs have all sorts of built in protections for over voltage, under voltage, over current, over power, and short circuit protections. Wow – what a mouthful.
Check out these great forum threads for information and listing of Tiers of the most common power supply units for mining Ethereum: