What does ripple on psu's mean

Thetech

Senior member
Mar 12, 2005
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What does the ripple rating on power supplys mean (3.3volts and 12volts)

Toms hardware PSU test

I was looking at the Pc Power and Cooling turbo cool 510 power supply are the ripple ratings acceptible, I plan to use this psu with the Asus a8n sli-premium motherboard and I read they require 20-25 amps on the 12v line.
 

stevty2889

Diamond Member
Dec 13, 2003
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It's been a while, so I could be wrong, but if I do remember correctly, when converting AC voltage to DC, you will still get some little fluctuations in voltage, rather than a perfect DC signal, and that is ripple voltage. The higher the ripple the more fluctuations you have in your voltage. So instead of your 3.3v staying between 3.25 and 3.35v, it may have bigger spikes like 3.1v-3.5v.
 

Allio

Golden Member
Jul 9, 2002
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Everything about that PSU is more than acceptable, except maybe the price.
 

Texun

Platinum Member
Oct 21, 2001
2,058
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stevty2889 may be right about this but I understood ripple to be dirty power caused when the AC isn't cleanly converted to DC. Alternating current has a cyclic waveform when viewed on an oscilloscope, whereas DC should be a solid. A ripple would mean there is still some AC (dirty) current present. Capacitors can flatten out the ripple and deliver a cleaner direct current. The better the capacitance the cleaner the power. Maybe someone with more recent knowledge on this subject can come along and give a better answer. At least this can serve as a bump until then. :)