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Power Consumption

So, we’ve spotted a number of innovations in the new generation of Atom CPUs. But each time we delved deeper, we had to mention certain shortcomings and deficiencies that spoiled our impression from the new products. It is in terms of power consumption and heat dissipation that we should see advantages without any reservations. The transition of the Atom to 32nm tech process couldn’t produce any other results. Let’s check this out in practical tests, though.

The graphs below show the full power draw of the computer (without the monitor) measured after the power supply. It is the total of the power consumption of all the system components. The PSU's efficiency is not taken into account. The CPUs are loaded by running the 32-bit version of LinX 0.6.4 utility.

The power consumption of a computer with an energy-efficient CPU in idle mode is determined by the quality of the mainboard’s voltage regulator. The CPU itself isn’t a big consumer compared to the other system components when idle. Anyway, we can note that the system with the new-generation Atom has the lowest power consumption in this test, being much better than the previous version of the platform.

It is at the high CPU load that we can see the improved energy efficiency of the Cedarview. The Atom D2500 and Atom N2800 systems have a power draw of 10 watts, which is much lower than what the systems with the Atom D525 and AMD E-350 need. In other words, the new Atoms have no alternatives among energy-efficient CPUs in terms of performance per watt.

The extreme loads are not as interesting as real-life applications, though. Let’s check out the power consumption of our systems as they play HD video.

Both Cedarview versions are leaders in energy efficiency. Their systems consume much less power than the AMD Brazos. On the other hand, AMD’s solution offers broader functionality.

So, when it comes to power consumption, a CPU with slimmer tech process is going to be more energy efficient. Here, these are the Atom D2500 and Atom N2800. By the way, notwithstanding the different positioning of these CPUs and their TDP, they are actually close in their power requirements. But thanks to its Hyper-Threading technology, the Atom N2800 is superior from the performance per watt standpoint.

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