Difference Between Fully-Modular, Semi-Modular, And Non-Modular PSUs

Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs, Modular pieces are the future of customization. They are popular in the world of technology, but are also becoming increasingly common elsewhere.

The difference between non-modular, semi-modular, and fully modular PSUs is primarily in the speed at which it will be able to power up your rig.

Fully modular PSUs are often faster than non-modular or semi-modular because there is less bulk weight from the no longer permanently attached cables.

Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs

Let’s examine more of the primary factors that separate these PSU types and how they can impact your system build or budget planning.

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What Are Non-Modular PSUs?

There are two main types of PSUs (and their variations): one is non-modular and the other is modular.

Non-modular PSUs have all their cables permanently attached to the unit while modular ones allow system builders and PC enthusiasts the option to upgrade individual components of the PSU or select certain accessories at will.

Non-modular PSUs are less expensive than modular ones, Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs but they typically aren’t any worse in terms of quality or reliability.

Non-modular PSUs are the easiest for beginners to use and don’t require any complex connections to be made.

Still, all other connection types are an almost automatic upgrade as upgrading your PSU goes without saying – regardless of how much experience you have, modular cabling is recommended!

The biggest problem with non-modular PSUs is the large number of cables you will have to lay idle in the back of your case.

Other than the visual aesthetic that comes with it, having a clogged up case fan could mean that your PC is at risk of overheating and going kaput.

All those cables that you don’t need do not serve a purpose and are a hassle. You will spend more time actually trying to use them rather than having them be there for the convenience of your case and you.

If you have a large computer tower, overheating may not be that much of an issue. However, those with smaller cases might have some problems with overheating.

While there are many who can take the risk and put up with this situation, there are still others who would rather avoid it by purchasing extra fans to ensure that their PC stays cool enough to continue working normally.

The final drawback of non-modular PSUs is that if the cables happen to break, you then have to replace the entire unit and not just the cables.

Pros Cons
Easiest For Beginners Can’t Remove Unused Cables
Cheapest Bad Airflow
Cannot Replace Faulty Cables

What Are Semi-Modular PSUs?

Semi-modular PSUs are the slightly more expensive alternative to non-modular PSUs that only have between one and three cables permanently attached.

Semi-modular units have some connectors permanently attached but also leave some space for upgrades and changes in the future.

Typically, permanently attached cables will be the motherboard 24-pin connector, a PCI-E power cable, and an 8 pin connector for the CPU.

There are also non-modular models available. If you find out that you’ve got limited space where the PSU is being installed, it’s best not to have an extra mess of unneeded cables and just get yourself a “chubbed” down version.

And the best part is that you can leave it unplugged to increase airflow around your computer or server. You don’t have to worry about cables getting in the way and messing with air circulation.

Speaking from a practical standpoint, semi-modular PSUs are all one will need for a PSU form factor.

Permanent, but only occasionally plugged in cables are going to be the cables that you have permanently connected to a piece of hardware so that they will always remain attached, such as an ethernet cable that’s plugged into your internet modem expecting it to be left on 24/7.

It’s always a good idea to keep any extra cables from coming out of your box. That way you’ll never have to worry about them leaking out at a later date and causing issues in the other parts of the system.

Then, for any additional cables, you can simply add or remove them by switching the waterproof protective plug at the end.

The drawbacks in buying a semi-modular synthesizer are that they cost a small bit more than their conventionally non-modular counterparts, but the price difference isn’t anything crazy.

Other than that, you’re still left with the issue of one of your permanent cables breaking and needing to be replaced.

An affordable option for beginners to PC gaming is this PSU that features good airflow and a reasonable price. It also comes with all necessary cables already attached so you won’t have to plug anything in yourself.

Pros Cons
Better Airflow Slightly More Expensive
Easy For Beginners Not As Easy As Non-Modular
Fewer Cables Some Cables Can’t Be Replaced.

What Are Fully Modular PSUs?

Fully Modular Power Supplies are going be the most comprehensive and best looking power supplies on the market.

These are the PSUs with no permanent cables soldered into the PSU by default, and you plug in every cable during setup.

Many people like PSUs for the airflow and flexibility but by far the leading reason why people choose fully modular PSUs is in order to cater exactly to their needs given how they can be customized.

Some PSUs have aftermarket cables specifically made for that type of PSU, so you can get better-looking cables without the risk of frying your parts.

Most customization options come in the form of modifications that you could technically use on any kind of power supply unit. Still, some aftermarket PSU modifications will be built into the actual wiring that needs to be installed as a power cable.

The most beneficial feature above everything else would be the ability to easily replace faulty or broken cables.

This allows you to get more life out of your PSU, and if you get past your warranty, you won’t have to replace the whole PSU if the cable breaks.

Many components of a PC are migrating towards being modular.

Adopting these technologies saves you time and money in the long run because, if you mange your cables well, your build will be more sturdy, less buggy and void of excess cabling everywhere.

For most people, cables are just a necessary headache that is born with any electronic device. However, if you’re looking for something a bit more aesthetically pleasing.

Or if you’re simply seeking the assurance of knowing that everything will work at its peak potential no matter where you go, we encourage you to go fully modular as this ensures that you have easy and unrestricted access to every cable across your entire system.

Pros Cons
Best Customization Most Expensive
Best Airflow Most Confusing For Beginners
Can Replace Every Cable

What PSU Type Should You Get?

If you’re looking for exceptional cable management and ease of use in your custom build, you should consider a modular PSU as part of your next PC build.

If you can’t fully stretch the cost of a modular PSU and still want better airflow, cable management, and you don’t want to worry about plugging in all your cables, then the semi-modular option is just right for you.

If you’re on a budget and don’t have a ton of money to spend on a modular PSU but still want better airflow, keeping your cables tidy, and would love the convenience of not having to plug in every single cable – then semi-modular is right for you.

Are PSU Cables Universal?

PSU cables are like spaghetti; they may look the same, but they’re generally not compatible between different types of kitchen appliances. It’s important to use a PSU cable that is intended for your PSU of choice.

If you’re using an SATA power cable to power a non-SATA device then there’s a much greater risk that the device will be affected if the PSU fails.

There are no universal standards for PSUs, just like there are no universal laws. But we can all agree that they’re important. However, using a cable made for an entirely different PSU could be harmful to your computer’s health.

If you’re still skeptical about this, take a look on Reddit where people are complaining about their old PC power cables destroying the cables of their PSUs.

Most people think it is a wise move to save money because they got their cable management just right after hours of fiddling with it, but this is not the case.

The fact of the matter is that most power cables are necessary, Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs but not exactly pretty.

This can be an issue for some individuals as some PC builders who want to improve the overall look of their computer case wish to replace the default cables which can either be a hassle or too expensive.

The most popular way to get better-looking cables is to shell out some extra cash to purchase a nice, attractive set of PSU extension cables.

If you choose to purchase a PSU extension, however, it will replace the one that came with your power supply unit.

You should make sure that you’re buying PSU extension cables which match the wattage of your PSU along with the voltage requirements.

Another thing that helps with this is knowing the cables required for your system because it helps to avoid confusion. Full cables are those cables do not need any adapters or connectors to be used in your PC, while modular ones do.

Brands that make this type of product may have compatibility lists to determine if your PSU can work with those cords. Another option is to check individual websites for what types of parts they will accept.

A more common issue that occurs is with cable management, so you’ll usually find yourself needing to use a PSU cable extension if the cables are too short.

How Much Wattage Do You Need?

The first thing you should do before you install your mining rig is to count how many Amps it needs and make sure your electrical panel is large enough to support it.

First you will find an estimated breakdown in the top right alongside a graph detailing your flow. It’s after this that you’ll get to know about a generator’s overall minimum wattage.

Whatever the wattage number they give you is, you can safely add another 100w to that and get a PSU close to that number.

You don’t want your computer to go over the maximum wattage allocated to it by your PSU.

One could otherwise risk irreparable damage to one’s system if they run on the high end of the spectrum, especially in regard to overclocking or running particularly power-hungry components.

Producing a PSU that works at around 50% load is optimal. Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs If you have too low or too high of a load on your PSU, it won’t be as efficient as possible and could lead to overheating which we will touch on below.

If you’re planning to make huge upgrades or even overclock your computer, it may prove best to choose a more powerful power supply than you originally planned on.

For your high-end computer, a 1000w power supply is typically best. It’ll be able to cover the needs of all your parts and any extra space for future upgrades.

For your high-end computer, a 1000w power supply will be sufficient in powering all the components installed. It should be more than enough to cover the needs of all your parts and any upgrades you may consider doing in the future.

When building a budget gaming PC, one of the most common component mistakes is buying too small a power supply. This can be incredibly wasteful and expensive in the long run as those extra watts are just going to waste.

Any GPU or CPU upgrades you do in the future are likely to require you to start using more wattage for your PC.

This isn’t always true and it really depends on which parts you choose, but a great way to cut down on your power consumption is by investing in some kind of coolant system that can keep the internal temperature of your rig down.

For example, in one of my machines, I currently have a 2070 Super that runs at 215 watts. But if I were to upgrade to a 3060 Ti, I could see the wattage go down by 15 because the 3060 Ti only uses 200W.

But if I decided to upgrade to a significant device that would presumably be of better quality than my current one, I would want to ensure it was more energy efficient. For example, if I replaced my 2070 super with a 3080, I could reduce the energy used by 105 watts.

Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs, it depends on what you currently have and what you’re upgrading to.

Definitely a good idea to go with a higher watt PSU if you plan on doing some serious overclocking and pushing your CPU or GPU to the limit. It will prevent your PC components from frying under high loads.

Power supplies can get a lot hotter than you think from over-clocking but this can cause serious damage.

Over-clocking GPUs is just as bad as you increase the energy consumption of your graphic card looking at it being increased by 40 to 70 Watts, though the exact amount varies.

What’s The Difference Between Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum, And Titanium Rated PSUs?

80 Plus is the brand name for something known as an efficiency rating. It will let you know how good or efficient your PSU really is when it comes to using electricity and running your computer

Electricity usage for the lower levels of an 80+ energy rating chain is going to be less efficient than electricity from a top-rated product.

When building your setup, it’s important to know what kind of performance you want from your hardware.

For example, if you choose a high-end graphics cards with the 24/7 gaming-built-in hardware, then you will obviously need a more efficient power supply unit (PSU) to accommodate the graphics card and allow for occasional spike during power draw.

Just like cars, PSUs have a predetermined life span based on how efficiently they are.

The 80+ PSU Rating System is voluntary but based on an efficiency of at least 0.9 at 70% Load. This means that if a unit has a power factor of less than 0.9, it will be submitted individually to ensure its at least 80% efficient.

If a unit has a power factor of greater than 1, it will also be submitted though as such units cannot score more than “Efficiency Above 92%, 95%, 98%, 99%”.

The higher the power supply unit (PSU) efficiency, the better that unit is rated when it comes to the metals they are made from.

In order to see the correlation between computer systems and power supplies, it is important to determine the aesthetics of one’s system by looking at the input provided to it.

A 560W PSU will provide an 80 plus Gold Certificate when its computer is supplied with 500W from the wall. This means that it consents 400W for use rather than wasting 200 watts in heat.

100 watts of unused potential remains as wasted potential. Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs It can later compound on itself to make the situation worse than it already is.

A titanium level power supply unit will have 90% efficiency at a 100% load, meaning it will use 450 watts of the 500 watts supplied, only transferring 50 watts into heat and using the rest. # Titanium

If you are building a PC, you want to ensure that your power supply unit is well suited for handling the requirements of your system – which means the best option would be a PSU with an output that isn’t too high (or too low) as this can result in some instability.

PSUs are best used when they’re at 50% capacity. Under that, their efficiency is compromised; at over 90% their power output begins to show degradation.

This means that if you have an overkill PSU with way too much wattage, like a 1600W PSU for a build that uses 400W, your PC is most likely going to crash.

The same goes for getting a PSU with wattage that is too close to your actual usage. If you use 400W but get a 450 or 500W power supply, this could overload and harm your PSU.

Ideally, you will get a PSU with wattage that your build will typically use up 50% of, so it won’t leave too much excess power to be wasted and will ensure optimal operation of your PC components.

This is also good news for those on a budget because if you’re building your custom PC rig to maintain a balance between performance and price then you can be benefiting your build by not overspending on an overkill PSU with too many watts.

When it comes to building the foundation for your PC, nothing is more important than the power supply unit (and its accompanying cables) because everything else depends on this vital component.

This is good for your PSU (power supply) because it can last longer and operate more efficiently, producing less heat and using more of the power that is put into it than other models which might shed large amounts of heat.

I recommend getting at least a Gold rated 80-Plus PSU because they don’t cost as much as Titanium, but are just as efficient.

If you’re intent on getting a power supply with a larger wattage than necessary, you should make sure it doesn’t cost more than it should.

An easy way to let your PC/server know that there is more hardware on the way without impending disaster is to add some more hardware a little at a time. Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs It’s better not overdoing it in one go and trying to wait until 50% usage usually yields great savings from an efficiency standpoint, which you’ll be thankful for in the long run.

Buy A Reliable Brand, Not The Cheapest Brand

Even though it may be tempting to purchase a generic or brand-less PSU, due to its low price and attractive design, you should keep in mind that these products do not often meet reliability and performance expectations.

The PSU (Power Supply Unit) is a controller for all the important electrical components in a computer. When not functioning correctly, it can create a multitude of problems ranging from electronic malfunction to even a fire hazard.

It is well-known that several companies outsource their own PSUs to other factories far away from China since it has become very complicated and difficult to properly make them due to how advanced technology has become.

Building a PC will be one of the most cost effective ways to invest in your build, but if you want to get the best quality for your money there are certain brands you should consider, such as EVGA and Corsair.

Many off-brand products come with a great deal of frustration because they tend to lack quality, and cheap power supplies are likely to die much sooner or else have some other malfunction.

The main point of this is that one shouldn’t use components with questionable brand-name sponsorship for things like power supplies.

Big name brands really do make the best products in nearly all situations and if given the choice, there’s often no reason to go for an off-brand product.

Getting A Quiet PSU

Among the many essential things you should look for when buying a new PC is the case. There are tons of different cases out there, and it is important to pick one that has its own built-in fans system that helps it get rid of any heat generated by the components inside.

It’s also important to pick a quiet type of fan because you won’t want something that gets too noisy. Isn’t it good to feel like your PC can put on a pair of pants without anyone noticing?

Although no company will say they have a loud power supply, Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs you can check the reviews and find out what other owners of that product thought about the noise level.

Do PSU Rails Matter?

The rails of a PSU aren’t as important as they may have been in the past. These days you can get plenty of power coming through just one rail and in most situations, it will be protected by short circuit protection.

Short circuit protection is triggered when too much electricity tries to travel down a single path, and it will shut down your PSU in order to avoid meltdown.

The benefit of having a 12 rail system is that in some situations this will happen very rarely as protection systems are very effective in most cases.

Even if they don’t, the OC Protection circuit will recognize when too much voltage is coming down one rail, and shut-off the PSU to protect not just the PSU but also any components connected to it.

It is a secondary measure of protection that does help in some rare scenarios, but in the majority of cases a single-rail PSU will suffice.

In many situations, you don’t need to shop by rails and there are more crucial things that require your attention like efficiency and wattage. For example, a light sensor may be able to track your movement but if the hardware is not efficient enough, it may cause other programs or functions of the device to malfunction.


PSUs are a lot like pants. You wouldn’t want to cheap out on or put minimal effort into reading about them when building your PC, as it is an essential component and investing in a good quality item is essential to your comfort and the performance of your computer.

Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs, you have done something that not many others have done, and that is reading this page.

Fully modular, semi-modular and non-modular PSUs fall into two different categories based on how their cords are structured.

To put it simply, in fully modular synth designs there are no permanent cables and you have to manually connect your modules to a central hub.

Semi-modular synths use a central hub but also some cables that remain connected permanently to their modules. Non-modular synths utilize all permanent serviced connections in the end.

In addition to having better airflow, semi-modular or fully modular power supplies will also have sections of cables you can remove. They may cost more up front but they don’t matter as much if you do not need them all.

Products with the lowest price are of course, non-modular. Playing on a budget? Go for the cheapest solution if that’s what you’re looking to do.

Looking for a balance between budget and quality components? If so, then semi-modular is probably your best bet such as modular power supplies and peripherals.

If cable management is something that matters to you, then fully-modular should be considered as it will give your PC rig one less thing to worry about.

Modular PSUs are more modular than the others. If you want to use them, the PSU will arrive with necessary cables, including SATA and PCIe connectors (the 24-pin ATX connector is standard on all PSUs). If you need extra cables, be sure you get ones that are compatible with your modular PSU.

More critical to the performance of your computer is the 80 plus system. 80 plus is a measurement system that can be used to rank how efficient your power supply unit (PSU) is, and I recommend getting at least a gold-ranked PSU.

Of course, if you have the budget and are creating the ultimate gaming PC, you can go the extra mile and invest in 90 % reliable hardware. Titanium hardware is your safest bet if you want to ensure nothing goes wrong with your nifty gadget.

High efficiency appliances can mean less heat maintenance, which will extend the limited lifetime of your electronics , saving you money and reducing waste.

Don’t skimp on a proper power supply unit for your PC. Difference Between Fully-Modular Semi-Modular And Non-Modular PSUs We recommend getting at least a gold semi-modular PSU for mid-tier builds, and you should always consider your power needs and make sure that your source of power can provide them.

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