Does a HP 180 W PSU have the capability to run three large screens?

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  1. Posts : 331
    windows 10

    Does a HP 180 W PSU have the capability to run three large screens?

    I am endeavoring to determine the load on my power supply as a first step in in sizing a new Battery Back-Up Power Supply.

    That thought led me to purchase a Kill-O-Watt meter. I have been thinking that I would start by measuring the loads of my current components: Computer alone, then add monitor 1, then replace it with monitor 2, then add up the values to get a total load. Maybe this is not a good take?

    I am using two large screen monitors now without any noticeable decay in performance.

    Ultimately I would like to add two more monitors and a battery back-up with a significant run times ideally an hour or more.

    Digging in I have been reading up on PS's.

    It occurred to me that I may be on a Fool's Mission with this computer?

    I will appreciate guidance on the measuring and sizing and determining the limits of my current machine's power supply.

    Thanks for any thoughts.
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  2. Posts : 14,223
    Win10 Pro and Home, Win11 Pro and Home, Win7, Linux Mint

    What part of High Mountains of Central Colorado? I worked at Eagle County Airport in the '70s.

    Generally the monitors have their own power supply and don't know of many UPS' that will run more than 15 or 20 minutes, only meant to accommodate an orderly shutdown of a device when commercial failure occurs. Did have knowledge of an issue with engine generators and their 30 second startup time when the newer solid-state device [at the time] would have already shut down, battery backups were necessary to prevent even 1 second delay and keep the devices on [two-way radios], working until the generator was fully running.
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  3. Posts : 4,921
    Windows 11 Pro 64 Bit 22H2

    What is the Make and Model# of the HP computer? Do you have a separate Video Card installed (ie) GPU?
    If it is a standard desktop size, as opposed to a Small Form Factor, he Power Supply Unit can be easily replaced. It is recommended to have at Least a 500W PSU. Computer manufacturers always put in the cheapest PSU with low wattage to save money. They expect that it will be efficient for the computer once it leaves the factory, they aren't expecting you to make upgrades.
    Monitors have their own power supply so they don't take up much power from the computer. However, to run 3 Monitors, you will have to have a hefty video card and that draws a lot of power. Add every drive in the computer (ie) HDD/SSD, CD/DVD, External USB drives, any other peripherals plus the computer itself and you can see where you need as much power as you can afford and that will fit in the case.
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  4. Posts : 23,819
    Win 10 Home ♦♦♦19045.4651 (x64) [22H2]


    Plug the computer itself into the Kill-O-Watt meter, add all the screens, read the wattage draw.

    For the battery backup, add the draw from the computer and the draw from all the screens. You can test that by plugging the comp and all the screens into one plug strip, and then plugging the plug strip into the Kill-O-Watt meter.

    Things to consider.
    I doubt you'll drive 4 monitors w/o a discreet vid card. That ofc will probably require a larger power supply, as was mentioned above.
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  5. Posts : 331
    windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Thanks for the responses.
    System Name DESKTOP-H92FAF8
    System Model HP Pavilion Desktop PC 570-p0xx
    Home: Version 10.0.18363 Build 18363

    I forgot about the AC power to each monitor. Good point.

    Only standard graphics. In the last loop through this I "discovered" external cases that can house a graphics card. That could be an option, I would think. Please correct me if not.

    500W PSU. Do I read you right they have the same form as the 180? Would ones like this one meet that requirement.

    Maybe one like this one? Coolmax I-500 500W ATX 12V V2.0 Power Supply .

    It strikes me that a 500 W would make sense under extended, all day, usage. I will know better about this when I have gathered the measurements.

    In my tracking through UPS's all state that it is not advisable to daisy chain units or put them in parallel. I have yet to find an example a circuit that deploys a high speed switch that would sense and transfer control from a first to a second or third BPS when one gets low on run-time. Seems like there should be one that could operate from an Arduino auxiliary computer? Not yet tried to chase that thought.

    My fear here is intra-day trading stocks and encountering another Internet catastrophe. We had one a few years ago when the wildfires burned the main feed. We were out of business for over a week. The rub for the inter day trading if such happens - the brokerage house would be flooded with telephone orders and there would not be any getting out of a position for the remainder of the day.

    Okay if the market goes up: not okay if the market dives during that period.

    Thanks again for the thoughts and any new ones.

    I will check back when I have my measurements.
    Last edited by mikeincousa; 11 Dec 2020 at 18:47.
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  6. Posts : 18,034
    Win 10 Pro 64-bit v1909 - Build 18363 Custom ISO Install

    Hello @mikeincousa,

    System Specifications

    Please update your system specifications [ system AND hardware ] by editing your profile . . .

    > How to Fill in your System Specs at Ten Forums.

    To make this process easier for you, there is an automated method that you can use by clicking the Download button at the top of the Tutorial. It contains a standalone .exe file delivered in a ZIP file. You just need to unzip the file and run the SystemInfo.exe file. As this file is a standalone file, there is nothing saved to your computer.

    It will help us to help you!

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  7. Posts : 11,246
    Windows / Linux : Arch Linux

    Hi folks
    Unless the power supply in your area is unreliable and you are running mission critical applications ot things like Stock trading where an outage at a critical time could make you lose trades (and money) - why spend money on a battery backup -- - just ensure your graphics card is capable of running 3 monitors (or if you can perhaps a second card) and just get a 500W PSU and have done with it. The external monitors as others have pointed out have their own power supplies so you just need to ensure the graphics system on the computer is capable of driving those monitors.

    A temporary power failure interrupting Videos / Netflix etc IMO isn't worth the hassle of backup power supplies etc --I'd rather spend the money on better / more suitable components for the computer. You'd definitely need a bigger PSY if you want to run 3X 4K UHD monitors at full resolution concurrently -- and ensure plenty of cooling - modern high performance graphic GPU's can get quite hot. !!!

    (Note on Trading systems -- even doing Intraday -- if your main computer goes down you can still complete / initiate the trade if you've a decent phone !!! most investment platforms have mobile phone applications --obviously not as good as main computer but should suffice in an emergency to complete a trade, get out of a losing position etc etc).

    If you've got space a small gasoline / diesel generator could do -- or if you are in an apartment block you could use a Car battery with an inverter - should provide enough power for the computer and at least one monitor -- you can get auto switch if main power fails. I've a small gasoline (petrol as they call it --bought from UK ) generator but haven't needed it here yet --Power seems 100% reliable but we do have some nasty Winter storms at times so who knows !!!! and with the COVID things there could be a shortage of repair crews if lines go down.

    I've got one of these (cost 250 EUR) at 3.7KVA - enough to run all sorts of things --both 110V and 220V

    Does a HP 180 W PSU have the capability to run three large screens?-screenshot_20201212_104011.png

    Autoswitch completes within 5 secs so all you need on main computer is battery that gives 5 secs of power -- not a problem of course on laptops.

    Of course the other issue you might have is if the Internet goes down in your area because of general outages then you are going to have problems connecting to the trading system anyway if the ISP is down --that's another issue though.

    Last edited by jimbo45; 12 Dec 2020 at 05:49.
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  8. Posts : 2,487
    Windows 10 Home, 64-bit

    mikeincousa said:

    500W PSU. Do I read you right they have the same form as the 180? Would ones like this one meet that requirement.
    Googling indicates that your HP case is 6.4 inches wide and that it likely takes a so-called SFX power supply. HP calls it "180 W uATX Energy Star 6.0 internal power supply"

    That's likely to be smaller than the standard ATX PS/2 full size PSU.

    It is conceivable the case will take a full size PSU, but I'd guess not since it didn't have one from the factory.

    Here's a list of SFX power supplies from PC PartPicker:

    Choose A Power Supply - PCPartPicker

    Several are at least 500 watts.

    Seasonic and EVGA are typically reliable. I don't know about Corsairs in the SFX form factor.

    Power supply length might be an issue for you. I'd personally measure the existing PSU and make note of how much larger a PSU could still fit in your case. HP support documents might give some indication of maximum acceptable length?
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  9. Posts : 331
    windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Thanks for the comments.

    I have not been thinking about using a phone for an alternate.

    When the wildfires burned the main feed cable it took out the towers too.

    The local police, fire, and first responders etc. were complaining about the lack of a backup system for emergency communications. Maybe they have fixed that by now. I will have to check that out.

    I am wondering if POTS's are still available? If so that would be an almost fail-safe solution. Need to check-on that thought too.

    I am wondering if there is a commercial version of HAM Radio?

    At first blush this looks interesting:
    5 Best Indoor Generators for Apartments - Reviews & Buying Guide [2020]

    Thanks again for all the guidance and thoughts.
    Last edited by mikeincousa; 13 Dec 2020 at 14:23.
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  10. Posts : 347
    Windows 10 Pro

    One thing I am surprised no one mentioned yet, the size (wattage) of the power supply has zero to do with how many monitors you can connect to it. Monitors all get their power from the wall and not the computer. The only reason to be considering a new power supply is if you are going to add a video card to it, as that anemic 180W one likely couldn't handle a video card.
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