We performed our power consumption measurements using an Extech Power Analyzer 380803. This device is connected before the PSU and measures the power draw of the entire system (without the monitor), including the power loss that occurs in the PSU itself. In the idle mode we start the system up and wait until it stops accessing the hard disk. Then we use LinX to load the CPU, and LinX and MSI Kombustor working simultaneously - to create complex heavy load.
Since Turbo Core technology lowers the processor frequency below the nominal value under heavy CPU load, the actual system power consumption in nominal mode is impossible to measure accurately. Therefore, we had to find a compromise and disable the CPB Mode parameter in the mainboard BIOS. This is a pretty serious allowance, which changes the system behavior dramatically, but nevertheless we believe that the obtained results are credible enough. The thing is that LinX utility loads the CPU extremely heavily, much more than you would anticipate from regular programs. As a result, despite the fact that CPB Mode parameter has been disabled, the measured system power consumption under heavy load created by LinX turns out about the same as we observed in real applications launched with enabled Turbo Core technology. We applied the same principle when we selected utilities for creating complex system workload. When we chose programs responsible for heavily loading individual system components, we made sure that they created about the same need for power as real application would in every-day usage scenarios. The results on the following diagrams are arranged in an ascending order for power consumption and the results of MSI FM2-A85XA-G65 are marked with a darker color.
In the nominal mode MSI FM2-A85XA-G65 consumes very little power when idle. At higher loads its consumption grows up, so it becomes comparable to the Gigabyte, yet it still remains economical. Just don’t enable the exclusive power-saving features in the ECO section of the mainboard’s BIOS except for the EuP 2013 parameter: they increase power consumption for some reason. The MSI remains economical at the overclocked settings, even though not very economical compared to the other mainboards.