Asus M3N78 Pro: Geforce 8300 & HybridPower Explored

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TEST RESULTS

Our test system is fairly basic, featuring an OEM 80Plus power supply, notebook hard drive and Blu-ray drive. The CPU is a X2 4850e, a mid-level dual core 45W processor. It is cooled by a stock AMD heatpipe cooler with PWM fan.


Test platform.


Test Results: Asus M3N78 Pro
Test State
X2 4850e @ 2.5Ghz
X2 4850e @ 1.5Ghz
Mean CPU Use
Peak CPU Use
System Power
Mean CPU Use
Peak CPU Use
System Power
Off
N/A
2W
N/A
2W
Sleep (S3)
N/A
4W
N/A
4W
Idle
1%
2%
37W
1%
2%
43W
Rush Hour
7%
10%
~44W
9%
12%
~47W
Coral Reef
32%
44%
~53W
41%
50%
~47W
Flight Sim.
48%
62%
~67W
73%
92%
~50W
Drag Race
58%
72%
~65W
78%
88%
~50W
CPUBurn
100%
93W
100%
54W
CPUBurn + ATITool
100%
102W
100%
62W
X2 4850e @ 1.5Ghz undervolted to 1.100V, Cool-N-Quiet disabled

The M3N78 Pro has excellent power consumption. The system drew a very low 37W AC at idle. Playback was smooth throughout without any video or audio glitches. When the IGP was stressed, power consumption went up just 9W. The system also performed well when we underclocked the CPU to 1.5Ghz. Though lowering the clock speed resulted in higher CPU usage during video playback, the overall power draw was much lower. As a pure playback device, the CPU is overkill at 2.5Ghz — an undervolted, underclocked CPU can do the same job while drawing less power. The IGP is very capable for video playback, carrying the load if the CPU is relatively slow.

Asus M3N78 Pro vs. Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-2SH @ 2.5Ghz
Test State
Asus M3N78 Pro
Gigabyte MA78GM-S2H
Mean CPU Use
System Power
Mean CPU Use
System Power
Off
N/A
2W
N/A
8W
Sleep (S3)
N/A
4W
N/A
9W
Idle
1%
37W
1%
38W
Rush Hour
7%
~44W
2%
~53W
Coral Reef
32%
~53W
28%
~65W
Flight Sim.
48%
~67W
47%
~69W
CPUBurn
100%
93W
100%
101W
CPUBurn + ATITool
100%
102W
100%
109W

Compared to the Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-S2H with the ATI 780G chipset, the Asus M3N78 Pro used less power across the board in every test state. With a couple of exceptions, nVidia's hardware consumed between 7-12W less — very significant for a low power system. We were impressed with the 780G's low power draw, so we were surprised and delighted to see this nVidia chipset board top it.



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