The present study has tested most of the loss models previously published in the open literature and found an optimum set of empirical loss models for a reliable performance prediction of centrifugal compressors. In order to improve the prediction of efficiency curves, this paper recommends a modified parasitic loss model. The performance analyses by using various empirical loss models are also compared with those by the two-zone modelling. Predicted performance curves by the proposed optimum set agree fairly well with experimental data for a variety of centrifugal compressors. The prediction method developed through this study can serve as a tool for preliminary design and assist the understanding of the operational characteristics of general purpose centrifugal compressors.