Knowledge Base

How Many Watts Does a PS3 Use? (PlayStation 3 Wattage Test)

By:Michael Johns

PS3 head

On this page, you will find out how many watts a PS3 draws.

The PlayStation 3 was an absolute beast of its time. It was one of the most powerful computers available to consumers when it launched. In fact, the performance was well ahead of its time and very few games could even make it sweat! The US Air Force even connected 1,760 PS3s together to build a supercomputer known as the Condor Cluster. All this punchy performance surely comes with a high power consumption… I dread to think how much electricity it used when running a 24 hour race on Gran Turismo 5.

Below we will discuss and test PS3 wattage, explain how to work it out for yourself, and calculate the total electricity required.

How Many Watts is a PlayStation 3?

A PS3 uses a maximum of 380 watts but usually draws between 170 – 200 watts during normal gameplay.

The exact number depends on the game or function you are using on the console. For example, the most demanding games will use 200W while simply watching a Bluray movie will use less than 100W.

The reason for this change in power consumption is down to the computer processing power to perform a task. Big games with intensive graphics will put the internal computer under a lot more pressure than simple functions like DVDs or streaming music. In addition, when the console is working hard it will need to run cooling fans on high speed to dissipate heat.

You should also be aware that the PS3 uses 1.1W to 1.3W when left on standby.

How to Find Out Your PS3 Wattage

There’s 3 ways you can work out the wattage of a PS3.

  1. Check Product Specification

The quickest way is to look at the PS3’s specification. The watts (W) is usually written on a sticker on the base of the appliance. If not, you can check the user manual or Sony’s website for technical details.

  1. Use a Wattmeter

A wattmeter is brilliant for getting a live wattage reading and tracking total energy usage of any appliance. You can simply plug it into your PS3 to get instant information. 

I used one to test my PS3 which gave a live reading of 171.1W when playing Grand Turismo 5.

PS3 watt test showing 171.1W
  1. Wattage Formula or Calculator

If you know the amperage and voltage of your PS3 you can use this to find the maximum watts. Simply use the formula Amps x Volts = Watts. Or you can head over to the ‘Watt Calculator’ to work this out.

PS3 Wattage Test

Let’s take a look at a PS3 power consumption test. 

How Much Electricity Does a PS3 Use?

You can use PS3 wattage to work out how much electricity it uses. Plus this can be useful in understanding how much it costs to run your PS3.

A watt (W) is a measurement of power at a single point in time. A watt-hour is the total amount of electricity used in an hour. For example, a PS3 drawing 200W would use upto 200Wh when running for an hour.

Happily, electricity bills are recorded in kilowatt-hours (kWh). A kilowatt is simply 1000 watts. So a 200W PS3 running for 1 hour uses 0.2kWh.

In reality, you use a PS3 for 2 hours a day. This means it uses upto 400Wh or 0.4kWh electricity a day. That’s 12kWh a month and 146kWh a year. 

That’s a rough electricity cost of upto $0.06 a day or $22 a year to play high end video games on a PS3 for 2 hours a day. In reality, it will cost you a lot less than this as your games won’t always be demanding this level of electricity usage.

Using a PS3 Off-Grid

If you want to use PS3 in an off-grid situation like a power outage, RV, or similar, the information above is useful. It helps you to select the correct power products and calculate run times.

You can either use a power inverter, portable power station, or generator to create AC electricity. 

To make sure everything runs smoothly you should check two things on this equipment – wattage capacity and total energy capacity. 

Your power source, like an inverter, should have a wattage capacity of at least 20% more than your PS3. This ensures it will be able to deliver enough power as they are never 100% efficient. To play your video games, you will need at least 400W of power capacity. This will give you enough to run a TV along with your console. 

Secondly, you need to ensure your energy source, like a battery, has enough energy to run the PS3 for the required amount of time. As we already know, it will use upto 200Wh electricity every hour. This is the equivalent to 16.6Ah on a 12V battery.

How Many Watts Does a PS3 Use Summary

I hope you now have a clear understanding of how many watts a PS3 uses.

This game console is certainly big and powerful. It’s definitely more demanding than its predecessors, the PS1 and PS2. If you play for a few hours every day then you’ll notice an uptick in your electricity usage, don’t forget you need to run an HD TV as well. Using one off-grid from a battery supply will use a decent chunk of energy too, so make sure you have a way to recharge when you finish playing.