Nvidia has announced its Ampere GPUs and it’s clear they’re going to be a massive step up in performance. Despite a new more efficient chip design they are also going to be power-hungry. Nvidia state that the RTX 3070 draws 220 Watts and requires a 650W power supply, whilst the RTX 3080 and RTX 3090 both state that a 750W power supply is required.
There’s a little more to it than raw power though, and for a top tier build using these new GPU’s you’ll want to ensure you’ve got a high quality, stable and quiet power supply. In this article, we’ll give you our recommendations for the best power supplies available for your Ampere RTX build.
A note on the 12 pin power connector
Nvidia Founders Edition RTX 3080 and 3090 GPU’s have a new 12 pin PCI-E power plug design which mounts at the middle of the card. The reason for this is they have a truncated circuit board inside that allows the cooling fins to extend beyond and air to blow right through them: This compact design doesn’t allow space for the standard PCIe power connectors. Don’t worry though: All the other manufacturers’ versions of the cards have retained the standard PCIe power sockets, whilst the Nvidia cards will ship with a power adaptor to allow you to connect standard PCIe cables to their proprietary connector. You will not require custom cables or a new power supply to run these latest GPUs in your system.
Best PSUs for RTX 3070 / 3080 / 3090 Ampere Builds – Our Recommendations
Best PSU for RTX 3070: Antec Earthwatts Gold Pro 650W
This Antec Earthwatts Gold Pro PSU is a rebranded Seasonic Focus Gold design. It may be semi-modular but that’s no disadvantage since you need the ATX, EPS and PCIe cables as a minimum anyway. You can connect up to four PCIe cables if required, though the RTX 3070 will use just two. It’s gold-rated for efficiency and operates with minimal noise thanks to its smart fan operation – the fan runs at exceptionally low RPM until the power supply is really loaded up, so you won’t hear it in normal operation. It uses DC-DC topology for maximum stability and efficiency. There’s also the full suite of protections in place. The power supply is capable of running power-hungry GPUs: we use one in our Premium Builds test bench and it’s happy powering our 320W draw RTX 2080 Ti so it will have no issues with the 220W RTX 3070. It’s backed with a 7-year warranty. With competitors now well over $100, this is an excellent value power supply that is well up to the task of powering your RTX 3070 build.
Best High-end PSU for RTX 3070: EVGA SuperNOVA GA 650 W 80+
If you’re looking for a PSU that’s easier to customise with cable sets, moving up in price a little at $115 we have EVGAs SuperNOVA GA power supply for the RTX 3070. This PSU is EVGA’s latest revision and includes all the features you’d expect of a high-end power supply: It’s Gold efficiency rated and fully modular and has 100% Japanese capacitors. It has a zero fan mode at low workloads so it’s silent until the PC is working hard, at which time you’ll hear the case and GPU fans more anyway. The dual ball bearing fan ensures both long life and minimal noise. This PSU ships with a 10-year warranty and EVGA’s stellar reputation for customer service, so you’ve got decade long peace of mind. This PSU forms a rock-solid basis for any RTX 3070-based build.
Best SFX PSU for RTX 3070: Silverstone SX650-G 650W
SFX builds need careful planning, and if you’re on the lookout for a 650W power supply in SFX form factor your options are limited – this is, even more, the case since trade wars and the global pandemic combined to hit production and supply lines. For the best SFX option at present, we’ve picked the Silverstone SX650-G. This potent little power supply packs 650W output and 4 PCIe connectors into its tiny chassis. There’s a silent running 92mm fluid dynamic bearing fan and all Japanese capacitors. Silverstone boasts of the class-leading single +12V rail meaning it will happily power the most demanding GPU’s, and also that is has a very low ±3% voltage regulation. The modular cables are flat for easy routing and packaging in compact cases. Dual EPS 8 Pin cables support the latest Z490 and X570 chipset motherboards allowing you to fully populate an 8+4 pin CPU power socket. The warranty is a little disappointing at 3 years but that doesn’t impact the quality of the actual product at all. At the time of writing, this is our recommended 650W Power supply if you need an SFX build with an RTX 3070.
Best Budget PSU for RTX 3080: Seasonic Focus Plus 750W Gold
Budget is, of course, relative when you’re talking about a build including an $800 GPU. The Seasonic Focus Plus Gold is the minimum we’d specify for such a build and the extensive feature list warrant its slightly higher price.
This power supply has everything you need: The recommended 750W power output with Gold efficiency for lower heat output and energy bills. There is zero fan mode for silent operation at under 30% load and it’s a high-quality unit with a fluid dynamic bearing. Seasonic use a neat PCB based socket arrangement which should make this PSU more robust. It’s also only 140mm deep maximising the space in your PSU shroud. It has 2 EPS power connectors to fully support power-hungry CPUs on the X570 and Z490 motherboards. There’s also an industry-leading 10-year warranty on this unit. Combined with Seasonic’s excellent reputation in the manufacture of power supplies this is the best option for the RTX 3080 and a strong supporting system.
Best High-end PSU for RTX 3080: EVGA SuperNOVA GA 850W Gold
The EVGA SuperNOVA GA 850W is our recommendation for a higher-end option for more demanding systems based around the RTX 3080. If you’re considering powering high-end CPU’s like the Intel i9-10900K alongside this GPU you’ll want a little more overhead and this power supply offers that without breaking the bank. EVGA has adorned this latest version of their gold-rated power supply with all Japanese capacitors (Chinese capacitors gained a bad reputation after failures) and of course fully modular design so you can make your build super-clean. As with other PSUs in the series, there’s a 135mm dual ball-bearing fan for low noise and high durability, with zero fan mode below 40% load so it’s silent. There’s also a 10 year warranty and EVGA’s solid customer service reputation for your peace of mind.
Best SFF PSU for RTX 3080 – Corsair SF750W Platinum
If you’re looking to shoehorn an RTX 3080 into a build requiring an SFF power supply your options become very limited. Thankfully the Corsair 750W Platinum has an excellent reputation and is capable of powering the highest-end hardware despite its diminutive size. The platinum efficiency rating is indicative of the quality of the design and components. The PSU has a 92mm fan that stops under low load for silent operation. Unfortunately, pricing and availability are crazy at the moment, with the combined rise in popularity of SFF PC’s increasing demand, and trade wars with China and the global pandemic hitting supply. If this is the PSU for you, you may have to wait for a price drop or bite the bullet and accept it as a cost of having the best.
Best PSU for RTX 3090 – Corsair AX 850 Titanium
If you’re building an all-out powerhouse around the RTX 3090, you’ll want a very robust power supply capable of running power-hungry components with overclocks. The PSU we’re chosen here is capable of all that and will last a decade to boot: the Corsair AX 850. This power supply adopts a ‘best of the best’ philosophy to justify the premium price tag. It has 100% Japanese capacitors, a 135mm fan with zero fan mode for silent operation under low load. It supplies 3 PCIe Cables and a pair of 8 Pin EPS cables, and Corsair offers their own custom cables too if you want a manufacturer guaranteed customisation options. Finally, there’s a ten-year warranty to ensure you don’t have to worry about your PSU until 2030. This is a power supply that you can have faith will run your RTX 3090 build with ease.