The Brewing Problem with GPU Power Design | Transients

Retro

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Those GPU power transient spikes are become ever larger with every graphics card generation and I mean seriously large, hitting around 650W for a 3090 which is causing PSUs, even good quality ones, to trip their overcurrent protection and shut down the PC without warning. This is often tricky to troubleshoot, or even impossible to precisely nail down where the problem lies. Looks to me like a grey area between the manufacturers of graphics cards (especially NVIDIA), PSUs and motherboards which really doesn't help the buyer.

The bottom line is that to help avoid these problems, do the following:
  • Buy a good quality PSU like Seasonic or Corsair and one with a power rating a good 200W or more than you'd think you need to power the system
  • Buy a good quality motherboard
  • Buy a good quality graphics card. This will come with a better PCB that's likely to suppress transients better
There's no skimping out on component price with modern high end graphics cards if you want to stand a good chance of avoiding this problem as there's currently no magic bullet for it.

Personally, I bought a Corsair HX850W PSU in 2009 (at a good price, special offer) after seeing superb reviews for it and have had zero problems with it, even when really loaded up with two GTX 590s in SLI back in the day which it's technically underpowered for (1000W recommended). Friends at the time said this PSU was overkill as I had a GTX 285 that didn't use that much power, but time has proved that it wasn't overkill and it's actually in use to this day, 13 years later, still working perfectly and powering the PC that I'm writing this post on now with an RTX 2080 SUPER in it that has the capability of generating large current spikes.

In depth analysis here by Gamers Nexus. These guys really know what they're doing, very professional.

 

Crims

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I'm just considering using the best I can afford, which will either be finding a service for rendering bakemaps for my games or using the Deck.
 
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Retro

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Flaunting my ignorance here, what's the Deck?
 

Arantor

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I'm assuming the Steam Deck - a device that's handheld, with a capable enough GPU, running Linux and between native ports plus Photon, capable of running a sizeable percentage of the Steam library on a handheld device.
 

Retro

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Yeah I kinda had that idea, but I don't wanna assume.
 

Crims

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Yeah I kinda had that idea, but I don't wanna assume.
Yep, the Steam Deck. Valve is probably the only company actually thinking progressively for us non-PC gamers.
 

Arantor

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I hope this heralds an era of developers thinking less about being inefficient, on the basis that the gamers have good PCs, but one where imaginative use of limited resources is made.

It's wishful thinking at best, but you never know. I'd love to see a return to that - watching people pull off 'how is that even possible' style tricks on the 8- and 16-bit era hardware was my childhood.

I will even be the dissenting voice and say that I'm kinda glad about the brewing problem, because like Moore's Law and all the relevant challenges in the CPU arena, it might finally swing the pendulum back towards writing efficient software again.
 

Crims

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I hope this heralds an era of developers thinking less about being inefficient, on the basis that the gamers have good PCs, but one where imaginative use of limited resources is made.

It's wishful thinking at best, but you never know. I'd love to see a return to that - watching people pull off 'how is that even possible' style tricks on the 8- and 16-bit era hardware was my childhood.
There's DLSS, and that could easily be used in reverse for everyone (upscaling tech) (yes as well as the other one)
 

live627

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efficient software again.
I, for one, am tired of programs eating up multiple gigs of memory and having slowdowns as a result. Many modern languages force you to trust in the magic of the garbage collector. Well, maybe if resource management were manual (malloc() and free()), developers would have to be more mindful of their resource usage. But I get the feeling that this is largely wishful thinking, what with much of today's software being badly written.

I recently upgraded my copy of PHP Storm from version 9 to 2022. It is NOTICEABLY SLOWER. And required a login. Stop it with the SaaS already. Yet another stupid trend.
 
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