NZXT C650 PSU review: A power supply that packs a punch where it matters most

NZXT brings more affordable, non-smart C series PSUs to the market.

(Image: © Rich Edmonds / Windows Central)

The power supply unit (PSU) is the most important component of any PC build. It's what supplies the electricity to the rest of your system. A bad PSU can result in damaged or broken PC parts, which is we always recommend going with a respected brand and well-reviewed model.

NZXT teamed up with Seasonic, one of the leading brands in the PSU market, to create the excellent E series of smart PSUs, which can relay accurate information through the CAM software using a USB cable from the PSU to the motherboard. The new C series promises the same excellent performance, without the fancy software support.

NZXT C650 tech specs

  • Capacity: 650W, 750W, 850W
  • Dimensions: 150mm x 150mm
  • Type: Modular
  • Fan: 120mm, fluid bearing
  • Efficiency rating: Gold
  • Operating temp: 0C - 50C
  • Warranty: 10 years
  • Manufacturer: Seasonic

NZXT C650 supplies reliable power


Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central)

NZXT is best known for its lineup of premium PC cases. Like other vendors (think Fractal), the company is looking to further develop product lines, including motherboards and power supplies. While NZXT may be new to the PSU game, the manufacturer NZXT decided to partner with isn't.

Seasonic is one of the leaders in the PSU space.

Opting to go with Seasonic is a smart move for NZXT, and it resulted in an excellent smart series of PSUs, which we previously reviewed. While these units performed well, not everyone desired the smart features with software integration, hence the new C series of PSUs.

We have the C650 in for testing and as the model name implies it's a 650W unit. Design-wise, there's not really much to say. It's a slab of black metal, which is the norm for PSUs these days, but it is modular, making it an ideal solution for power in a system with few internal components, allowing you to use only the cables required.


Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central)

There's a zero RPM fan-mode button on the rear, which allows the unit to remain silent when not being pushed hard enough. Once you've reached the set demand and thermal thresholds, the 120-mm fan spins up, but it's not quite as loud as the NZXT E series PSU.

NZXT C650 provides reliable power without all the noise.

To really push this PSU to the test, I utilized two PC builds, one an overclocked quad-core Intel Core i5-6600K and another rocking the new 12-core AMD Ryzen 9 3900X (105W on its on). Both systems also had 32GB of RAM, an overclocked RTX 2070, and M.2 NVMe drive. Pushing this thing in intense applications, benchmarks and games showed no issues. I saw stable power delivery, as expected.

For cabling, NZXT includes the following:

  • 24-pin ATX
  • 1x 12v P8 (2x P4)
  • 4x PCIe 6+2-pin
  • 2x SATA (8x SATA)
  • 2x Peripherals (6x MOLEX)

That's more than enough to hook up the latest components you'll need in even a more serious gaming rig.

On paper, the C650 has more than enough grunt to keep the lights on, even while under load. You've got 80 Plus Gold certification, meaning it exceeds 90 percent efficiency while at 50 percent load, getting more performance per watt as shown in our testing. Built with all-Japanese capacitors, the C series is also built to last thanks in part to the numerous installed protections.

What you might dislike about the NZXT C650


Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central)

The only major complaint with this PSU is the cabling. It's a little on the short side for the SATA connections, meaning it may be a little tight if you're attempting to hook up multiple devices that use SATA power (SSDs, for instance) using a single output.

Another potential hit for some may be the price, but paying a premium on your PSU isn't a negative because of how important this component truly is in any PC build. It's a little on the expensive side, but so too are other PSUs from reputable brands with the similar build quality and power delivery.

Should you buy the NZXT C650?


Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central)

There are plenty of PSUs available, but only branded models from reputable vendors should be considered, and even then it comes down to efficiency ratings, reliability, stability, and price. NZXT's E series of PSUs are very good across the board, but not everyone needs (nor wants) the software integration.

This is where the new C series fits into place, offering similar specifications backed by a lengthy warranty from two reliable and established brands within the PC industry. Whether you need a 650W, 750W or 850W power unit, this family of PSUs are worth considering for your next PC build.

The use of high-quality Japanese capacitors and other components, the stable delivery of power across the rails, and the ability to have the unit operate without the fan spin up makes it a compelling choice. The 650W model is ideal if you plan on creating a single GPU system (up to around an RTX 2080 Ti) and compared to the E series, you save a little money in the process.

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.