PCIe 5.0 PSUs explained – everything you need to know.

Find out the details of PCIe 5.0 PSUs right here.

PCIe 5.0 PSUs explained

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If you’re wondering what PCIe 5.0 PSUs are, we have everything you need to know here. 

Understanding the difference between PSU generations can be confusing, especially PCIe 5.0 PSUs, as PCIe 5.0 is generally affiliated with SSDs and motherboards. However, to put it simply, PCIe 5.0 and ATX 3.0 labels go hand-in-hand, so you don’t need to worry about getting the wrong PSU by mistake. 

To help you learn more about PCIe 5.0 PSUs, we’ve put together this guide that will walk you through what PCIe 5.0 PSUs are and whether you should swap out your old one for the latest technology. So, without wasting another moment, let’s jump right into it.

Quick Answer

PCIe 5.0 PSUs are the same as ATX 3.0 PSUs, offering increased power excursion tolerance and better stability and efficiency. They use the new 16-pin power connector (12VHPWR) that is capable of delivering 600W of power directly to the GPU.

What is a PCIe 5.0 PSU?

PCIe 5.0, also known as Gen 5, represents the latest iteration of the PCIe standard, heralding a significant leap in data transfer capabilities. This advancement effectively doubles the data throughput, underscoring the potential for heightened performance across various devices.

Regarding PSU performance standards, PCIe 5.0 introduced a new 16-pin (12VHPWR) power connector capable of handling and delivering 600W of power directly to the GPU, as mentioned by Intel. This is important when you factor in the hardware the latest GPUs are packing and the amount of energy they need to perform their best. 

Modular power supply unit with labeled connectors for sata/pata, motherboard, and PCIe 5.0/cpu.
Corsair RM1000x PCIe 5.0 PSU – Image taken by PCGuide.

Since there aren’t multiple six- or 8-pin power connectors like in older PSUs, this helps with cable management and easy installation of the GPU. One thing to note is that PCIe 5.0 and ATX 3.0 PSUs go hand in hand, signifying an increase in handling power excursions or power spikes by 200%.

So, if you plan on building a PC with the latest hardware, such as RTX 40 series of Radeon 7000 series GPUs, PCIe 5.0 SSD, and more, then going for a beefy PCIe 5.0 PSU would be better suited better to handle the total power draw of your build. It would also help reduce costs as its tuned power efficiency would lower the electricity bills in the long run, and the increased stability would safeguard vital components from getting burnt during power surges.

Also, due to the improved design, less wattage is required to power the GPU, which means there is more overhead for other components to utilize.

Should you upgrade to PCIe 5.0 PSU?

Whether you upgrade to PCIe 5.0 or stick with a previous-gen PSU depends on your specific needs, hardware compatibility, and budget. PCIe 5.0 components are more pricier as they offer increased tolerance, faster speeds, and more efficiency. 

That said, you also need to consider the GPU. PCIe 5.0 has a 12-pin power connector and 4 data sense pins, totaling 16 pins, but they come in varying setups. For example, how the cord is put together will determine the maximum wattage it can handle, which can be anywhere from 150W to 600W. So, pay close attention to the cable specification, which depends on the GPU you want to mount. 

Another crucial aspect to remember is to consider the budget you’re operating in and whether investing in a new PSU would be worthwhile. If your current build is running fine with the PSU installed, then replacing it for a PCIe 5.0 GPU wouldn’t make much sense unless you’re upgrading the GPU, CPU, and other components as well. 

When was PCIe 5.0 PSU launched?

PCIe 5.0 PSU was launched in 2019. However, few devices support the PCIe 5.0 configuration. That said, PCIe 5.0 SSDs are available in the market, and with time, more components should fully shift to the newer standard.

Conclusion

While PSUs might not be exciting, they have a significant role to play. That said, PSUs have experienced an overhaul with the introduction of PCIe 5.0 and are able to cater to the high power demands of the latest generation of components. However, that’s not all. They also provide great power efficiency and streamlined communication to the motherboard. This helps save costs and protects against power surges.  


If you’re interested in learning more about PCIe 5.0, we recommend you check out our Is PCIe 5.0 worth it article for a more in-depth analysis.

Maria is a full-stack digital marketing strategist interested in productivity and AI tools.