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Gamers understand the need for a reliable power supply and having the best cables for longer gaming hours. As you set up your gaming corner, office, or systems, one of the first considerations is the right power cord to ensure an uninterrupted power supply. Since they operate for longer hours and require more energy, the cable selected must withstand the pressure.
When selecting the correct power cord for your gaming setup, there are various factors that you must consider. Amongst them are the system protection from electrical accidents, optimal performance, and appeal.
You have different power cords; however, only one will work best for your setup. What makes the selected cord ideal is the selection factors discussed in this article.
Types of Power Cords
There are different types of power cords, and they may vary based on the designs, country, designs, performance, and functionality. The types of power cords are usually based on various standards.
i. NEMA Power Cords
Also known as the type B or the American power cords. They are manufactured based on standards by the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA). NEMA is an agency that manages the manufacture of various electrical devices to ensure they are safe for consumer use and they perform as per the specifications provided by the manufacturers.
You can use these power cords for gaming setups due to quality guarantees. With gaming systems from American companies, they are the most reliable cables you can use for device safety.
NEMA power cords are available in specifications such as NEMA 5-15P to NEMA 5-15R. They are fitted with the type B plug, rated at 15A hence suitable for power-intensive gaming setup systems.
The plugs have three pins, two current-carrying pins, and an earth pin. Besides the two common options, you can get NEMA 5-15P to C13 and NEMA 5-15P to C15. Therefore, before you buy any of these pins, you must study the machine power needed to select the right ones. You can also ask the vendor to advise on the best one for your setup.
For versatility, you can buy an extension cord with a switch for additional device security. NEMA cords with switches enable you to switch the power supply to the system, especially if you want to leave other devices operational or have an extension cord with no switch. Therefore, you can switch off one device leaving others operational.
ii. European Power Cords
These power cords are mainly manufactured in Europe, consisting of type E and F plugs and power cords. They adopt the standards the European CEE sets; hence, you will likely get different power cord rates as C13, CEE 7/7 to C15, and CEE 7/7 to C19. The European power cords are amongst the most popular and reliable power cords.
CEE7/7 have two pins, and the receptacles have three holes; however in different designs. Unlike NEMA power cords, they do not have the earth pin but are still the best pins for ensuring power supply stability.
iii. Other Power Cords
Other common power cords include the Australian power cords AS/NZS 3112 (Type I), Japanese power cords JIS C 8303 type A and B, etc. Before selecting the power cords, you need to know the device’s country of manufacture and select the right power cord based on the standards. Another option is the IEC 60320 power cords, known for mating receptacles with odd numbers and female cable connectors.
The Material Used
The power cord quality can also be judged based on the material used: the cable casing and the external cover. Power cords are usually made of materials that determine durability, protection from fire hazards, and the ability to withstand environmental conditions.
Most cables are made of Polyethylene (PE), a thermoplastic material known for insulating quality. The cables are insulated from external conditions such as chemicals, acids, water, and pressure, especially when someone steps on the cord. They are suitable for temperatures ranging from -40 °C to 70°C.
If you have power-intensive devices that function at high temperatures or are in a relatively hot environment, consider Cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE). They are known for their heat, thermal, acid, and water resistance capabilities and have a higher current-carrying capability than the PEs.
For extra caution, consider Ethylene Propylene Rubber (EPR) with higher current capabilities and can withstand temperatures between -40 °C and 160 °C. Like other cords, they are water, heat, acid, and alcohol resistant. Another option is to use silicone rubber power cords; they are resistant to UV radiation, chemicals, water, and other environmental conditions.
Length and Thickness
The longer the power cord, the higher the energy lost due to electrical interference and current traveling conditions. Therefore, you need to minimize the interference by using thicker cords. If you want longer cords, ensure they are thick enough or are made from materials such as XLPE and EPR to reduce current loss.
The thicker ones can withstand friction and shock caused whenever someone steps on the cables. Due to the thickness, there shall be no current inconsistency since the other cover absorbs the shock to protect the internal cables.
Besides the length and the thickness, understand the machine power need and select based on voltage classifications. The classifications include low current to high current conditions. You must select power cords supplying the exact amount of current the machine needs.
A reliable power cord is ideal for the security of gaming appliances and to ensure a reliable power supply. Therefore, you should consider the appliance energy needs, the type of cable, cord quality, and other factors. Ensure you get a longer power cord; however, ensure the material is thicker to prevent electrical interference.