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External or internal power supply for consoles?

Next Gen: internal or external PSU?

  • External brick please!

    Votes: 157 31.1%
  • Internal power please!

    Votes: 276 54.7%
  • Mini coal-fired power station boxed with every console

    Votes: 34 6.7%
  • Either; I'm a fence-sitting coward

    Votes: 38 7.5%

  • Total voters
    505

Gamer @ Heart

Member
Oct 26, 2017
2,791
I don't care at all. It's going to be in a place where I can't see it anyway.

Why is there no poll option for, "either is fine."
When I clicked into the thread I was the same way, but the posts here make the case of why go internal at all. If there are any issues, you don't have to replace or send in the console, and like you said, in or out, you don't notice it at all where consoles normally sit underneath or next to a tv. There is no real case for internal
 

Imur

Member
Jan 4, 2018
129
Everyone who ever touched an external psu after an hour of gaming should know that its heat is indeed a problem. I never want to have a console as annoying as the ps4 pro again. So please external.
 

Krejlooc

Indie Game Dev
Verified
Oct 27, 2017
20,136
The bunk-ass PSU in the Dreamcast is actually the main reason it has that holy-shit loud fan in it. With a PicoPSU and external power supply, the dreamcast itself runs way, waaaay cooler.

Look at this piece of shit:



Disgusting.
Just to clarify, for people who don't know, this is a PicoPSU, for size comparison:



That entire thing I'm holding, can be replaced by that Pico PSU inside that is about the size of two quarters side by side.

The PSU inside the dreamcast is seriously 1/3 the total size of the console.



internal PSUs are usually one of the single largest components inside a console. Consoles can be waaaaay smaller without a PSU inside.
 

Vormund

Member
Oct 27, 2017
463
Where is the "I don't care" poll option?

edit: Actually I've voted for External now, some of you made really good points.
 

JustinH

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,823
I was kinda ambivalent on it before, but after the power brick died on my Xbox One a few months back, I'm glad I just had to replace that one afternoon rather than sending the whole console in for repairs. Unfortunately the replacement is third-party and is loud as shit. :/ I can hear it from a couple rooms away.
Yeah, I've had to replace a 360 power brick before and I just thought that I would've been angry if I had to send it in to fix it or just buy a new one (or open it and try to fix it myself).

I think I'd prefer external power supplies given a choice.
 

Scerick

Member
Oct 29, 2017
160
External. Easier to replace and get as much heat out of the console itself as possible.
 

Fadewise

Member
Nov 5, 2017
707
Performance (and thermals, to the extent that they effect performance) are the only things that matter to me for any of my equipment, since it's all in a 19" rack in the back room anyway.
 

RedHeat

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,188
Internal. The giant brick the OG Xbox One has a literally pain in the booty to look nice on my center without tucking the box behind a shelf or something
 

The Albatross

Member
Oct 25, 2017
10,614
Everything else being equal, internal for me. But knowing that everything is a compromise (heating, design, space, etc) I really don't care.

I voted fence sitting because if the compromise for an internal brick is a larger console, louder fans, design compromises, or reliability then I'll settle with an external brick. But all things equal in an ideal design I'd prefer internal.
 

Decarb

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,018
I carry my console around with me when I travel so always prefer internal. Also so many external power bricks have died on me compared to internals that I strongly believe they do not have as stringent QC checks as internals.
 

Pargon

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,173
I really prefer how much easier internal PSUs make things for cable management, transporting/storing the system, or having to replace the power cord. I recently set up a Wii U again, and it's a nightmare of cables - even with the game pad charging via USB now.
However external power bricks are by far the better solution for things like consoles and monitors/televisions from a servicing point of view.
The power supply is one of the most-likely components to fail, and it's far easier to replace an external brick than replace/repair an internal power supply - especially if it's a standardized component.

A big problem is that most power bricks for consoles are proprietary rather than using standard designs though.
And those power bricks are often junk. Xbox 360 and Xbox One power supplies are huge; have awkward cables; use proprietary connections; and have awful, tiny, annoying fans in them.

I love that the Switch can be powered via USB-C, and DS/3DS via USB (though the latter still use a custom connector on one end of the cable).
Unfortunately that's not going to be possible for next-gen systems, as they're sure to require more than the 100W maximum USB-PD allows.

They're probably too large for a console, but it makes me wonder if server-style power supplies would be feasible:


Internal to the system, but standardized and easily replaced if it dies.

I've been going through an replacing internal PSUs in many of my retro consoles -- Sega Saturn, Dreamcast, Amiga 1000, Atari ST, etc -- With Pico PSUs so I can use external power supplies, because it's way, waaaaay easier to replace a dead external PSU than a dead internal one.

External all the way.
That sounds like a great project - and something which would be of huge benefit for a collection of retro consoles, especially if they are all compatible with the same power supply type after modding.
 

Raccoon

Member
May 31, 2019
1,520
Internal is so fucking cool, just plugging in a cable

But external makes more sense for repairs and replacements

Ideally systems would have easily user-replaceable internal power supplies
 

julian

Member
Oct 27, 2017
6,182
The only advantage of internal I can think of is aesthetics, which is subjective anyway. Is there any real benefit to having an internal one?
Only advantage I can think of is it’s easy to replace the power cable cause it’s usually a generic cable that sometimes works on more than one system. Certainly simplified packing and unpacking lots of systems.
....I voted external.
 

Somnid

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,782
With new Gallium Nitrate chargers becoming more common I see no reason why we need huge bricks anymore, we should be able to slim them down and make them internal considering the size of a typical console. Hell, I think they should work on getting them under the 100W USB PD limit.

#IwataWasRight
 

shark97

Member
Nov 7, 2017
3,833
Just to clarify, for people who don't know, this is a PicoPSU, for size comparison:



That entire thing I'm holding, can be replaced by that Pico PSU inside that is about the size of two quarters side by side.

The PSU inside the dreamcast is seriously 1/3 the total size of the console.



internal PSUs are usually one of the single largest components inside a console. Consoles can be waaaaay smaller without a PSU inside.

and you just offloaded that size with an external, didn't go anywhere. judging by 360, it actually got an order of magnitude larger.

the freaking xbox one x, beast of a console that it is, manages an internal...

I guess there's some repair argument, but in a lot of years gaming and many many consoles, I've never had a console PSU fail.
 

Krejlooc

Indie Game Dev
Verified
Oct 27, 2017
20,136
and you just offloaded that size with an external, didn't go anywhere.

Uh, no. The dreamcast draws 12VAC 3 amps. The wall wart i'm using is dramatically smaller than the internal PSU. Like, I can directly compare them and see that the external PSU, even if crammed inside the DC, is way, way smaller than the internal PSU that was used.



That's yet another reason to go with external PSUs. They shrink in size over time as technology progresses.
 

shark97

Member
Nov 7, 2017
3,833
Uh, no. The dreamcast draws 12VAC 3 amps. The wall wart i'm using is dramatically smaller than the internal PSU. Like, I can directly compare them and see that the external PSU, even if crammed inside the DC, is way, way smaller than the internal PSU that was used.

That's yet another reason to go with external PSUs. They shrink in size over time as technology progresses.

Well my experience with external is the 360. It was always HUGE, even in later "slimmed down" versions.

That and bulky wall warts even for things that must sip a watt or two, like routers, raspberry pi, my amplified hdtv antenna, etc.
 

Krejlooc

Indie Game Dev
Verified
Oct 27, 2017
20,136
Well my experience with external is the 360. It was always HUGE, even in later "slimmed down" versions.

That and bulky wall warts even for things that must sip a watt or two, like routers, raspberry pi, my amplified hdtv antenna, etc.
wall warts are just power supply boxes without a cable attached. You can always buy a generic wall wart that has a detachable cable, I do it all the time for old systems like the sega genesis.

And you can build a smaller PSU for the xbox 360 pretty easily if you know what you're doing. And there is nothing stopping a 3rd party from producing smaller ones.
 

Simba1

Member
Dec 5, 2017
2,585
External, same console would be smaller and cooler with external power supply, compared to same console with internal power supply.
 

nib95

Member
Oct 28, 2017
11,801
It wouldn't affect my buying decision, but I'd prefer internal with a decent cooling solution.

I often hear people support external because you can more easily swap out a defective PSU that way, but I've never had to swap out a PSU in any system I've ever owned, whether internal or external, so that reasoning is immaterial to the guaranteed and constant space-saving benefits of an internal PSU.
 

ffvorax

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,587
Internal with a decent system to keep it cold without making it so loud that my room feel like be at the airport.
 
Oct 27, 2017
4,652
Spain
I'm fine with power bricks. My laptop has a power brick, my router has a power brick, my phone has a power brick, if it reduces the heat and size of the device, so be it. If they can get away with putting it inside, I won't care either way.
 

Ada

Member
Nov 28, 2017
1,724
Replacing an internal power supply has been trivial on all the PS consoles. All you need is the right screw driver and match the replacement supply to the model number of your console.
 

Greebman

Member
Oct 26, 2017
2,256
Internal with easy to swap out PSU. I mean doesn't the one in the PS4 just plug in? If it impacts the heat/noise output in any way, make it external.
 

JamFlan

Member
May 16, 2018
643
Internal ones have advantages when you carry them over to your friend's or with you on vacation. Less to carry, a bit easier to set up because you only need a cable and you aren't screwed if you forget to bring it. On the other hand those consoles are meant to be stationary, and for that I prefer less heat, less noise and therefore an external one. And as someone just mentioned it, if the external PU dies you just buy a new one without sending in your console for days or weeks.
Yeah, but then the console is larger, which is more of a pain to transport.

I really don't see how anyone could think internal is better. External means smaller console, easier cooling, and easier to replace. The brick just sits on the floor behind the desk or on the shelf somewhere nearby, so it's hardly a nuisance. I just can't imagine how someone would think internal is the superior design choice.
 

ThreepQuest64

Avenger
Oct 29, 2017
3,204
Germany
but then the console is larger
Larger requires different packing, but weight is what you actually have to carry around. Though I didn't measured the weight of PS4 Pro vs Xbox One X + PU, to be honest. Anyways, I rarely travel with my console so it doesn't really matter to me and this is why prefer the mentioned (external) solution. Cable management is also not an issue for my setup because they disappear behind my TV anyways as does the PU.
 

MCD

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,910
Internal.

Xbox external bullshit drove me insane for so long. It wasn't universal volt so travelling with one meant try to find a genuine power supply + living in a grey area means I gotta settle with either US or EU console.

Now it's so much better. The console is sleeker without adding external bulk when moving around the house or traveling. Universal voltage too. Just so much better.
 

MickZan

Member
Oct 28, 2017
412
I don't have any products with external power supplies anymore. I would be disappointed if a new product would have an external supply.