Articles: CPU

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Power Consumption

One of the advantages of the integrated graphics solutions we’re discussing in this review is their lower power consumption and heat dissipation in comparison with configurations that include discrete graphics cards. That’s why computers with integrated graphics cores are often assembled in compact cases and may be preferred to minimize the total cost of ownership. So, the power consumption of hybrid processors is an important factor which may affect your shopping choice in favor of the particular processor.

Since we’ve got processors with completely different TDPs in this review, we will only check out their power draw under high graphics loads. The clock rate of the integrated graphics core doesn’t depend much on the TDP. For detailed information about the power draw of particular processors under other types of load, you can refer to other reviews on our site.

The Corsair AX760i PSU we installed in our testbed supports power consumption monitoring which we use for this test. Unless stated otherwise, the following diagrams show the full power consumption of PC configurations (without the monitor) as measured on the PSU’s output. It is the total of the power draw of each PC component. The PSU efficiency is not taken into account. The tested configurations run FurMark 1.10.6. Moreover, for correct measurement of idle and low-load power draw, we enable the turbo mode and all of the power-saving technologies: C1E, C6, Enhanced Intel SpeedStep and AMD Cool’n’Quiet.

In our first test mode the systems are idle. The diagram doesn’t tell us anything new, actually, as we got the same results in our earlier tests. When the integrated graphics core is enabled, Intel’s CPUs need a little less power than their Socket FM2 counterparts.

When there’s high graphics load, the faster graphics cores of AMD’s APUs turn out to need more power. The transition to the new Richland design hasn’t provoked an increase in power consumption, however. Although the Devastator graphics core of AMD’s new APUs works at higher clock rates, the overall power consumption of the computer is lower than that of Trinity-based configurations. Intel’s Haswell is different in this respect. Its higher graphics performance also means higher power consumption, although the HD Graphics 4600 is still much more economical than the Radeon HD 8470D. In other words, AMD APUs need more power than Intel’s Core i3 and Core i5 series products. You must take this factor into account if you’re building a compact and economical computer.

Finally, let’s take a look at the power requirements of our configuration at HD video playback.

There’s a 50% difference between the AMD and Intel platforms. So, Intel’s new Haswell-based and older Ivy Bridge CPUs allow building multimedia computers which are not just more versatile and higher-performance but also more energy efficient.

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