The Signs & Symptoms of a PS4 Not Receiving Enough Power

Game consoles, including PS4 and PS5, that are not receiving enough power can have subtle symptoms like graphical downgrades to obvious extreme symptoms like being unable to turn on. If a PlayStation game console isn’t receiving enough power, the cause likely stems from the device’s power supply being unable to provide enough power to the system or the power supply is failing. The power connection is probably not at fault. If you’re running a lot of electrical devices on a single circuit the breakers will usually trip above 1,800 watts — game consoles usually run between 200 and 400 watts — and cut power to the entire circuit.

Graphics Downgrade

PS4 bad graphics display
Other than the CPU, the computer’s graphics card is the most power-hungry component in the system. The GPU is a likely target to show the earliest symptoms of being underpowered. When a graphics card is underpowered it will drop the performance levels and display graphics at a lower quality. The graphics downgrade will usually trigger if you run a graphics-heavy game or application that pushes the card to its limits. Graphics settings drops are usually accompanied with an error message and often start when you add new hardware to the system or replace an old component with a more power-demanding one.

Display Irregularities

If the PS4 monitor is flashing or displaying dots and lines when it shouldn’t be, the PS4/PS5 may not be getting enough power from the power supply unit. The insufficient power can cause the CPU and graphics card to render screen displays inconsistently. Additionally, the graphics card may turn off the monitor if there’s not enough power to render on-screen graphics. This is particularly common in multi-monitor setups.

Unstable System

Random program crashes, system freezes, PS4 randomly turns off by itself after a while of operation, stuck in safe mode loop, Blinking Blue Light of Death and the Black Screen of Death are all symptoms of a PS4 that’s not getting enough power. Like with graphical degrades, system instability symptoms often follow adding new hardware or upgrading existing components. PS4 system instability issues from insufficient power can be reversed by replacing the power supply or reducing the draw on the existing one by disconnecting unnecessary components. System instability can also cause driver errors and disable individual system devices. Additionally, if the PS4/PS5 isn’t getting enough power the PSU may just give up and shut down the entire system. The forced shutdown is similar to the BSOD in computer systems, but the power is so insufficient that the system immediately shuts down and is unable to even display an error message.

PS4 system Won’t Power On

A PlayStation that has a severely inadequate power source won’t turn on at all (read more on why the PS4 won’t turn on). In a better-case scenario, the PS4 may power on and display a splash screen before the power gets cut. However, the system refusing to power on is a symptom of several other hardware problems like a broken PSU. If the PS4 system won’t power on following adding a new component or upgrading an old hard drive, try swapping the old one back in and seeing if the PS4 powers on. If the system still powers on, either the new component is defective or the power supply can’t handle it.

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