Can I use old Corsair PSU?

roz1281

Gawd
Joined
Nov 1, 2004
Messages
598
I have a Corsair HX520W Modular PSU, and am wondering if it's compatible with a new build, and if it's better than the PSU I've selected? I think it is, but i have been out of the game for years. The indicated build is within my budget.

Old PSU

New Build

Thanks :)
 

swingdjted

Limp Gawd
Joined
Sep 14, 2008
Messages
243
I had a similar question and ended up keeping an old one (it was a Corsair TX750). It is running without problems. New system is:

ASUS ROG Crosshair Hero VIII (x570) motherboard
AMD Ryzen 3900x 12 core processor
2x32GB RAM
EVGA RTX 2060 video card
a SSD and 6 HDDs
a few USB devices
a Blu-Ray burner

The thing ain't broke, so I won't try to fix it. Some say I'm taking a risk with this old PSU, and they are probably right, but really, I consider it an acceptable risk. Biggest problem is that it's like having a dead octopus in my box since this old PSU is not modular, but the unused cables are tucked away to avoid restricting airflow and the computer tower is not visible in the room, so its aesthetics are not at all an issue for me. I've had PSUs die on me in the past, and so far, there were never consequences involving other components in the system.
 

GotNoRice

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jul 11, 2001
Messages
9,640
I have a Corsair HX520W Modular PSU, and am wondering if it's compatible with a new build, and if it's better than the PSU I've selected? I think it is, but i have been out of the game for years. The indicated build is within my budget.

Old PSU

New Build

Thanks :)
Right now is about the worst time possible to buy a new PSU. Because of the shortages caused by the Chinese coronavirus, as well as increased demand from people working from home, PSU prices have skyrocketed. That EVGA PSU is nothing special, and they were selling them for $20 each last year. I picked up a few, when they were cheap, to use as replacements for old OEM systems if/when their PSUs fail. They get the job done, but paying $50 for a $20 PSU is a tough pill to swallow.

Your old PSU is getting up there in years, being from ~2009. Age itself should not necessarily disqualify it from continued usage though. The spec has not changed much, and your old PSU will still be compatible. The 1000w PSUs that I use in both my primary and secondary rig are 2 years older than that, and both are still going strong. I would ask, what kind of life has it had? Has it been kept clean, and operated in a cool environment with plenty of airflow, etc? Or, has it been caked with dust, pet hair, tobacco smoke, etc, and left to roast for years?

Here is what I'd suggest, since you already have a functional PSU:

-Open up the old unit. Give it a full cleaning, clearing any dust, etc, out from every nook and cranny. Do a visual inspection for bad capacitors or burn marks anywhere on the PCB. Check that the fan still spins freely.
-Continue to use the old PSU for now.
-Wait a year, or however long it takes for the coronavirus supply issues to die down, and when prices on PSUs finally come back down to reasonable levels, re-evaluate your options at that point.
 

roz1281

Gawd
Joined
Nov 1, 2004
Messages
598
It had a decent life. It was in a smoke-free home, and i dusted regularly as well as I could without opening PSU. It's been sitting in my old system which hasn't been turned on since 2016 while i was away. I kept it on all day usually in the colder months, and off while i was at work in the summer.

I will open it up. I shouldn't touch anything I assume? Never opened a PSU.

Thanks!
 

swingdjted

Limp Gawd
Joined
Sep 14, 2008
Messages
243
Capacitors sometimes hold their charge longer than expected, so I'd avoid touching them or where they connect to the board if it was recently powered up. If your hands are clean and you have a hand on the case, you'll be grounded and won't cause any electrostatic discharge damage. Some people go as far as to get a wrist strap for grounding so that they don't have static issues, but I stopped doing that decades ago and haven't had any problems.
 

blackmomba

Limp Gawd
Joined
Dec 5, 2018
Messages
306
I wouldn't recommend any novice open up a PSU. Blow some air through the vents and be content with that.

Especially given its age. It's practically new
 

GotNoRice

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jul 11, 2001
Messages
9,640
I will open it up. I shouldn't touch anything I assume? Never opened a PSU.
You shouldn't have to touch anything inside the PSU. Most PSUs have a metal case, where part of the metal case will come off. Usually we are just talking about 4 Phillips-head screws. It might allow you to dust (using compressed air, etc) areas that wouldn't be very accessible simply through vent holes. There shouldn't be any significant danger, especially if it hasn't been powered on in years. Avoid the temptation to lick any of the capacitors using your tongue.
 

roz1281

Gawd
Joined
Nov 1, 2004
Messages
598
Especially given its age. It's practically new
I had run it from ~2009 to 2016, then it's been sitting in a box :)

Thanks for the tips guys, i will dust it safely and give it a go.

GotNoRice if I get the urge i'll just chew on a AA battery or something :)
 

pavel

Limp Gawd
Joined
Apr 8, 2014
Messages
203
I have a Corsair HX520W Modular PSU, and am wondering if it's compatible with a new build, and if it's better than the PSU I've selected? I think it is, but i have been out of the game for years. The indicated build is within my budget.

Old PSU

New Build

Thanks :)
I have the EXACT same psu. I sold the DDR2 memory, gpu and gave away the case it was used with. I still want to sell the P45 motherboard. Lol.

I am too afraid to re-use it. I liked the replies but I don't know if the one guy was right saying a bad psu won't harm other components. I doubt that statement.

Mine still works but people wanted to part out my system - no one wanted the entire computer so I sold off parts.

The idea to keep it as a backup test part seems okay. I guess I would be concerned about using it long term.
 

roz1281

Gawd
Joined
Nov 1, 2004
Messages
598
Know one said it wouldn't work out. If you run into issues down the road, you'll just have to wonder.
Yea, just updating thread :). I hope it works out. Or at least that nothing happens to the rest of the system. I'm still amazed by the quality of the box it came in.
 
Top