Do Graphics Cards Come with Power Cables? A GPU Power Connector Guide

Graphics cards don’t come with power cables and connectors, but these accessories come with PSUs.

Based on the power capacity of your GPU. You can connect it to PCI Express x16 Connector or PCI-e Power Cable, that is available in three types 6-pin, 8-pin, and 12-pin connectors.

Assembling a new PC at times can be tricky if you don’t have proper hardware knowledge.

Since there is a lot of hardware and cables involved in building your PC, you may get confused on how to connect them.

If the cables are not connected to their designated spot. Your system may act abnormally or, in severe cases, won’t turn on.

Graphics cards are particularly easier to deal with than other hardware. But, if you are a newbie, this too can get challenging for you.

In this article, we will tell you if Graphics Cards really come with power cables. If not, then how do you connect it with the Power Supply Unit, also known as PSU?

So, without dragging further, let’s check it out.

Do Graphics Cards Include Power Cables for Video Output?

Many people assume that Graphics cards come up with power cables, but this isn’t the case.

Very rarely, you will find display cards with power cables. However, the majority of them do not.

The power cable is an assortment that comes along with the PSU and not the GPU itself.

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Common Cables and Connectors Used In Graphics Cards

The most popular cables and connectors used with GPU are PCIe Connectors, PCIe Power Cables, and Video Output Cables.

Each of them carries a different power capacity. That’s why you should choose them wisely.

PCI Express x16 Connector

This is the most common and widely used method of connection for graphics cards nowadays.

As said by the name, PCI Express x16 is a connector that serves as a bridge between your graphics card and motherboard and can carry up to 75 watts of power.

If you have a low-power graphic card such as MSI GeForce GTX 750 Ti that only needs 60 watts, PCI Express is enough to run it.

Related Reading: Gpu fans not Spinning At startup

PCI-e Power Cable

If you have a graphics card that requires more than 75 watts of power, then it’s always best to connect with a PCI-e Power Cable to meet the power requirement.

PCI-e Power Cables come in 3 different types, including 6 Pin Connector, 8 Pin Connector, and 12 Pin Connector.

  • 6-Pin Connector:

The 6-pin connector can provide an extra 75 watts of power in addition to the PCI Express x16 power, making the total sum 150 watts. This power is enough for most of the basic and mid-range graphics cards to run.

  • 8-pin Connector:

An 8-pin Connector comprises a 6+2-pin connector. It can carry an additional 75 watts of power, making the total 225 watts overall.

Most video cards, such as XFX Radeon RX 580 GTS, only need a single 8-pin connector, but there are still some that run on 2 and even 3 8-pin correctors.

  • 12-Pin Connector:

It might sound a little extra, but believe me, there is a 12-pin connector too.

These connectors are specially built for the NVIDIA RTX 3000 Series as they need relatively more power than other graphics cards.

Even though a 12-pin connector is generally the same size as an 8-pin connector, it can bear power up to 600 watts to run top-of-the-line graphic cards.

Related Reading: How To Tell If Your Graphics Card Is Dying?

Video Output Cables:

Besides power cables, the graphics cards are also connected to video output cables, including VGA, HDMI, DVI-D, etc.

The video output cables are generally used to view your screen on any external device such as TV, projector, or monitor.

What to Do if PSU Does Not Support PCI-e Cable?

Most PCI-e cables come with your PSU so that you can easily connect it to your graphics card.

To find the power cable, open the computer case and look for the cables coming out through your PSU. The one that says PCI-e on the end of the cable is where you should connect your GPU.

However, if you don’t find any cable within your PSU. There is a high probability that you are using an old PSU, and the only way to fix this problem is to upgrade it.

Final Thoughts

Most graphics cards can easily run on 6-pin connectors. However, if you love playing the latest AAA titles that require a high-end graphics card, you would need a higher-pin connector to meet its power capacity.

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