4pin vs. 8pin

1 reply [Last post]
Joined: 11/08/2011
Posts: 14

I have been built computers since I was twelve but I never really built myself or anybody else a high end gaming computer until now. I am confused as to the difference between a 4pin and 8pin adapter for a CPU. Can the 4pin only supply a max of 100 Watts and under and the 8pin 100 watts and over? Or is there some other reason why there is an 8pin adapter.

eire1274's picture
Joined: 09/12/2003
Posts: 1221

The 8-pin just guarantees that the PSU is providing appropriate current, and in some cases motherboards require all 4 12V leads to be receiving power to even boot.

*Some motherboards work fine with just the 4-pin on an 8-pin socket, but it is a crapshoot which boards will work, and on higher-powered processors it is DANGEROUS to cheat this way.* 4-pin to 8-pin is a standardizing method (8-pin plug on 8-pin socket meets power requirements for CPU operation).

Nick McDermott - 3dGM Admin