Question How much power (watts) do gaming PCs use?

Jul 16, 2020
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Hello everyone!

First post here for my research project.

Trying to find out the actual power usage (power draw) of typical gaming PCs during typical use. This is not the same as the PSU spec, it should be somewhat less than the PSU. This may be listed in the specs if it's not custom built. Appreciate if folks can drop their gaming PC info (make/model (or custom) and power (watts) below? OK if's its your best guess for example for custom builds.

Or if anyone has a suggestion on a better way I can get this info (industry publications?) I'd really appreciate it.

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Jul 14, 2020
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I've been using this for years:

you punch in your parts, and it'll tell you the power draw of your PC at normal or gaming/graphic intensive loads. It can also recommend PSUs starting at about 50w over your maximum draw :)

If you're doing a research project I suppose just make a bunch of hypothetical builds which cover various ranges?
I would agree the Outervison calculator will get you to where you want to be.

Places like Techpowerup, Toms Hardware, Anandtech, Bit-tech, Tweaktown Guru3d and others review components and provide more exact power consumption figures which you could then add together if you really wanted to be exact about it :p

Anyway Outervison tells me mine is 507 watts.

Custom PC
I7 7700k
Asus Z270 Prime-A
Radeon 5700XT
1 7200Rpm HDD
1 WLAN PCIE card
3x140mm Fans
1x120mm Fan
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Outrovision is the go-to PSU calc as above.

It's worth noting though that it's intended to tell users what PSU they should buy that will handle heavy load on their systems, whereas during gaming the system might not actually be under that kind of load.

Therefore you'd want to check sites like @Kaamos_Llama suggests e.g. Techpowerup and look at their power measurements during average gaming loads.

Even that might vary a lot from reality because it depends how people game. The same PC may well have different power draws depending on if you run at 144hz or capped at 60 for instance. Or whether the user also streams their gameplay.

The other question is what on earth an 'average' gaming PC is. As above you might make hypothetical builds, but then how do you weight them? The Steam Hardware Survey is probably a decent place to look:
It will obviously vary hugely by the amount of stress the system is under. Thats why I'd thought it best to just take the Outervision calculator as a guide, it assumes on the high side (90% default). I suppose it depends what it is you are actually trying to research.
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