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 Post subject: Power Consumption of 5 C2D mobos with IGP & discrete VGA
PostPosted: Mon Aug 28, 2006 5:33 am 
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1. The power consumption for all five motherboards tested when using a Gigabyte GF6200TC (128MB RAM) and it also shows how the two motherboards with integrated graphics compare when using their IGPs. As a comparison it also shows a Socket 479 Core Duo motherboard which is highlighted in red to standout.

Image

The CPU clock speeds for the Core Duo system are very slightly different than for the C2D boards due to the different FSB and CPU multiplier values that the two architectures use - 1.66GHz & 2.16GHz.

2. Comparing the ASRock 775Dual-VSTA with 4 VGA cards.

Image

The FX5200 is an AGP card whereas the rest are PCI Express.
I tested the 3 PCI Express cards with almost all of the boards and under a number of conditions; idle and load. The 6200TC consumed the least power with typically the 7300LE consuming an extra 1.5W and the 7600GS an extra 1W in comparison.
Full details for the VGA cards are listed in the System Information section below.

3. Comparing the ASRock 775Dual-VSTA with PC3200 (DDR-400) & PC2-5300 (DDR2-667) memory.

Image

None of the tests outlined above are particularly memory intensive, so it’s possible that a more memory intensive application would show a different result.

4. The Gigabyte GA-965P-DS3 using DDR2-667 at 3 speed settings.

Image

The FSB was set to the stock value of 266 which gives the possibility of running the RAM at a clock speed of 266, 333, 400 and even higher. The actual RAM speed is twice the clock speed, which is why the values in the table are 533, 667 & 800.
The last test unfortunately wasn’t completed in full, but it gives an indication of how RAM that requires more voltage affects power consumption. The faster the RAM and/or the tighter the timings the more voltage it generally needs.
I didn’t find a way to determine the voltage used by the RAM when its voltage was set to auto which makes the data harder to interpret.

5. The Gigabyte GA-965P-DS3 at multiple FSB settings for the same CPU clock speed.

Image

As you can see from the disparate data in the above test with regard to voltages, this doesn’t give anywhere near a complete picture of how increasing the FSB for a fixed CPU speed affects power consumption. What it does highlight is that when you increase the FSB to the point that it requires extra voltage, the power consumption jumps noticeably.
The second test at 2.4GHz shows more clearly the effect of changing the FSB and RAM speeds whilst keeping the voltages fixed. The board wouldn’t run at 400 * 6 unfortunately, so I couldn’t complete the test as intended.

6. Under-volting the Gigabyte GA-965P-DS3 in the BIOS.

Image

1.168V was the lowest VCore attainable using RMClock. The BIOS allows a VCore range of 0.52 – 2.0V, this is using BIOS version F3.
I think that the C2D used in these tests is at best average and more likely below par when it comes to over-clocking at stock VCore and in under-volting. Therefore, I didn’t spend much time investigating this. The fragility of the Gigabyte board didn’t inspire further experimentation either.

7. Comparing a Core 2 Duo desktop with a Core Duo laptop and desktop.

Image

System Specifications

Core Duo Laptop - T2300E, 945GM, 1GB DDR2-533, GMA950, 60GB HDD, Screen switched off.
Core Duo Desktop - T2600, 945GM, 2GB DDR2-667, GMA950, 250GB HDD.
Core 2 Duo desktop - E6400, VIA PT880 Pro, 1GB DDR2-667, FX5200 128MB, 250GB HDD.

The Core 2 Duo would not drop below 1.6 GHz at idle, so I only show figures at 1GHz for the other two systems.
The difference between 1 and 2 GB of RAM resulted in a 1W difference at idle and load. This had no effect on the test as it was primarily looking at the difference between idle and load power consumption. Since the 1W difference was constant at both states, it cancelled itself out.

Main System Information

Antec P180
Silverstone ST30NF Power Supply (Fanless)
2 Nexus 120mm fans – one in lower P/S chamber, the other as exhaust on the side of the case opposite the CPU.
Intel E6400 2.13 GHz
Scythe Ninja + with Nexus 120mm
Arctic Silver 5 thermal paste
Samsung P120 250GB SATAII
NEC DVD Burner & floppy drive
Corsair XMS2 DDR2 PC2-5400 2 x 1GB
Kingston PC3200 1GB
Windows XP Pro SP2
(I haven’t listed fan speeds as temperatures weren’t reported)

Motherboards

ASRock 775Dual-VSTA
ASRock Conroe945G-DVI
Asus P5VD2-MX
Gigabyte GA-965P-DS3
Asus P5W DH Deluxe
Gigabyte GA-8i945GM


Graphics cards

Gigabyte GV-NX62TC256D8 – Nvidia 6200TC.
XFX PV-T72P-RAMG – Nvidia 7300LE.
Leadtek WinFast PX7600 GS TDH – Nvidia 7600GS.
The FX5200 is probably discontinued but its specification is – 128MB, AGP, DVI, D-SUB & TV-Out.

For more info on the differences between the varying Nvidia chipsets try Wikipedia.

Notes

RMClock 2.1 was used to set the multiplier and VCore from within Windows.
Speedfan 4.28 was used to monitor temperatures & VCore.
CPU-Z 1.33.1 was used to monitor VCore & FSB speed.
In the graphs, Burn-in refers to CPU Burn-in; Burn refers to CPUBurn.
For CPUBurn I ran the version optimised for the Intel P6; this is an old utility and there isn’t a version optimized for more recent CPUs.
CPU Burn-in was version 1.01 and Prime95 was 24.14. Two instances were run in each case, with the affinity being manually set to make sure each instance ran on its own core.
For CPU Burn-in the error checking mode was used, which is not the most power hungry. For Prime95 the torture test was used using the in-place large FFT setting, which is reported as the most power hungry.


Last edited by smilingcrow on Wed Aug 30, 2006 11:38 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 28, 2006 8:16 am 
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Thank you again! You make the wait for the SPCR article a little easier.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 11:04 am 
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Thank you very much for assembling you data so nicely.

What a pitty that all current C2D boards are quite power hungry compared to the mobile chipset powering the GA-8i945GM. This board is only lacking DVI to be a silencers dream. There are existing ADD2 riser cards. Maybe someone wants to try this one? Don't know anything about compatibility though.

ADD2: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6815133001

Btw, why JPEG for the first picture? PNG/GIF would suit as well. Corrected, great :)

Update: Intel also liststhe vcore and TDP of mobile chipsets. Desktop chipsets are without these numbers.
i945PM 1.05 V / 6 W
i945GM 1.05 V / 7 W
i945GMS 1.05 V / 5.5-6 W
i945GT 1.5 V / 15 W
PM: without IGP
GM: with IGP
GMS: for (U)LV CPUs
GT: mobile to desktop

About desktop northbridges accordingto the The Inquirer:
975X 13.5 W
945P 15.2 W
P965 19.0 W

About southbridges:
ICH7 3.3 W
ICH8 4.1 W

Also interesting about the upcoming 965GM: http://www.theinquirer.net/default.aspx?article=33229


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 1:15 pm 
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jojo4u wrote:
Btw, why JPEG for the first picture? PNG/GIF would suit as well.
Bloody hell, you don't miss a thing. :)
It’s purely down to my ignorance on such matters and the fact that I misinterpreted someone’s comment about GIFs as meaning they were no good for colour. Don’t laugh. :D
I’ve replaced it with a GIF and not only is it about one fifth of the size of the JPEG but it looks much better to. I guess JPEGs are no good for this sort of thing. Thanks for the pointer.

jojo4u wrote:
What a pitty that all current C2D boards are quite power hungry compared to the mobile chipset powering the GA-8i945GM. This board is only lacking DVI to be a silencers dream. There are existing ADD2 riser cards. Maybe someone wants to try this one? Don't know anything about compatibility though.
.
It’s a shame that more boards don’t come with a DVI add-in card as standard. The ASRock Conroe945G-DVI (S775) does and it costs less than £50, so there’s no excuse for the more expensive S479 boards not to include one. I guess there just aren’t enough people using DVI monitors. I think the problem is this:

A very large percentage of systems come with only integrated graphics which typically don’t support DVI. Therefore, monitor manufacturers are more concerned about D-SUB support, so their entry level products support D-Sub only. Even though a DVI interface may actually cost less than a D-sub interface, they can’t afford to leave out the D-sub interface and lose support for a large user base, so they stick with D-sub as the first choice. Having both interfaces obviously costs more, so is not available on the cheapest TFTs.
It’s a chicken and egg scenario; what comes first, an IGP with DVI as standard forcing entry level TFTs to support DVI only, or DVI only TFTs forcing IGPs to support DVI?
Why can’t they just ship IGPs with a DVI output and a DVI/D-sub dongle! Or is that too obvious. :shock:

I posted here about an ATI chipset that has just been released that might help this situation.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 2:00 pm 
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jojo4u wrote:
About desktop northbridges accordingto the The Inquirer:
975X 13.5 W
945P 15.2 W
P965 19.0 W
The figure for 975X doesn’t add up in my experience. I’ve looked at 975X for S479 & S775 and they were both more power hungry than the P965 board I tested. I also found 945G to be lower power than both and 945P when using a VGA card could even offer lower power than 945G as it doesn’t have an unused IGP. That’s speculation though.
Note. I'm comparing motherboards and not strictly chipsets, but I'm still suprised by these figures!

jojo4u wrote:
liststhe vcore and TDP of mobile chipsets. Desktop chipsets are without these numbers.
i945PM 1.05 V / 6 W
i945GM 1.05 V / 7 W
i945GMS 1.05 V / 5.5-6 W
i945GT 1.5 V / 15 W
PM: without IGP
GM: with IGP
GMS: for (U)LV CPUs
GT: mobile to desktop
Nice link. Shame about the 945GT, which is the official mobile on desktop chipset.


Last edited by smilingcrow on Thu Aug 31, 2006 5:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2006 3:47 am 
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smilingcrow wrote:
It’s purely down to my ignorance on such matters and the fact that I misinterpreted someone’s comment about GIFs as meaning they were no good for colour.


Next time, try png. It compresses better, has more than 256 colours and not patented. One-colour tranparency is safe, only alpha-channel is not supported properly by IE 6.0. Irfanview handles png very well. For extra compression, download the pngout plugin.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2006 3:25 am 
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Yes, I also vote for PNG which has great features, very good support and is a free and open format.

A question: did you notice any high pitch noise coming from any of the motherboards - especially Gigabyte DS3? I'm actually considering Abit AB9 Pro but I want to know the risk of getting a whining MB...


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2006 3:31 am 
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paapaa wrote:
did you notice any high pitch noise coming from any of the motherboards - especially Gigabyte DS3? I'm actually considering Abit AB9 Pro but I want to know the risk of getting a whining MB...

No. I’ve only ever experienced this with an Aopen i975X-YDG skt479 and it’s a horrible thing to behold.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2006 11:35 am 
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Quote:
Why can’t they just ship IGPs with a DVI output and a DVI/D-sub dongle! Or is that too obvious.

Some 6150-based uATX mobos have standard D-sub connectors and a DVI "dongle" on a PCI plate.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2006 12:06 pm 
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Thanks alot for the great post!

I was wondering, you post power consumption for motherboards, but how can you mesure the power consumption of the motherboard without including the CPU usage? Am i reading it wrong and is the CPU poweruse included?

thanks in advance.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2006 12:42 pm 
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dvdmonster wrote:
I was wondering, you post power consumption for motherboards, but how can you mesure the power consumption of the motherboard without including the CPU usage? Am i reading it wrong and is the CPU poweruse included?

It's measuring power consumption for the whole system, excluding the monitor.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2006 1:12 pm 
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smilingcrow wrote:
A very large percentage of systems come with only integrated graphics which typically don’t support DVI.

I've been a fan of the Pentium M family of CPU's on the desktop since the AOPEN 855 board was released. AOPEN has produced boards with on-board DVI output for both the 915 (i915GMm-HFS) and 945 (I945GTM-VHL) chipsets. I just picked up one of the latter and am looking forward to setting it up soon.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 15, 2006 1:24 pm 
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A little bump for this thread here. On the original stats, the ASRock 775Dual-VSTA is running a CD2 correct? I just want to make sure as the Duo Core laptop motherboards are using a origina CD right?

I guess I was looking at going to the mobile side to save power, especially when I wasn't using much CPU. It appears the load differences would disappear between those two steps if the mobile board had a CD2. However, the Asus draw much more power under idle - 20% CPU load times as the desktop boards won't go under 1.6ghz right?

Thanks,
Chris


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 15, 2006 2:16 pm 
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Smilingcrow: The first table shows that you had to raise Vcore (from 1.008 to 1.104 V) for the GA-8i945GM mobo when using a graphics card and running at 1.6 GHz. Do you know why? I've never heard of a CPU becoming unstable when adding a graphics card (except for when using a insufficient PSU) so I'm very curious.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 15, 2006 2:54 pm 
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wow, that's a serious amount of work!

just 1 Q - why did the 945 board need a higher Vcore with the 6200TC than with just the IGP?

Also, any ideas how the FX5200 and 7600GS compare under graphics load? I'm looking to upgrade from the 1st to the latter sometime soon and it'd be interesting to know what effect on power consumption that might have.

thanks!


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2006 1:26 am 
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Schlotkins wrote:
On the original stats, the ASRock 775Dual-VSTA is running a CD2 correct? I just want to make sure as the Duo Core laptop motherboards are using a origina CD right?
Correct. All the test were with a Core 2 Duo E6400, apart from the Gigabyte GA-8i945GM board that used a Core Duo mobile CPU.

Mats wrote:
The first table shows that you had to raise Vcore (from 1.008 to 1.104 V) for the GA-8i945GM mobo when using a graphics card and running at 1.6 GHz. Do you know why? I've never heard of a CPU becoming unstable when adding a graphics card (except for when using a insufficient PSU) so I'm very curious.

mattthemuppet wrote:
just 1 Q - why did the 945 board need a higher Vcore with the 6200TC than with just the IGP?
On further testing the system turned out not to be stable at 1.008V, so I tested again at 1.104V for stability. I’m going to publish a more extensive report on this soon, which will address this and add a lot more data.

mattthemuppet wrote:
Also, any ideas how the FX5200 and 7600GS compare under graphics load? I'm looking to upgrade from the 1st to the latter sometime soon and it'd be interesting to know what effect on power consumption that might have.
thanks!
I didn’t test that. There are various reviews on the web that look at GPU power consumption, so it shouldn’t be too hard to determine how much a 7600GS consumes under load. The FX5200 consumes roughly ~5W at idle I would say; not sure about how much at load though.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2006 6:17 am 
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smilingcrow did you have any problems installing the Scythe Ninja with the Gigabyte GA-965P-DS3 board? I'm thinking of getting the Ninja to go along with that board, but it looks like it may run into the heat sink that is on the board right next to the CPU. Thanks.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2006 7:06 am 
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gcw07 wrote:
smilingcrow did you have any problems installing the Scythe Ninja with the Gigabyte GA-965P-DS3 board?
No.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2006 10:51 am 
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smilingcrow wrote:
gcw07 wrote:
smilingcrow did you have any problems installing the Scythe Ninja with the Gigabyte GA-965P-DS3 board?
No.


I guess he was using Ninja rev.A. The rev.B might be problematic.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2006 10:56 am 
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paapaa wrote:
I guess he was using Ninja rev.A. The rev.B might be problematic.
I was, if Rev B = AM2 support.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 2:51 am 
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In recent issue of german magazine c't (26/06) is a complete PC with this caracteristics:

Conroe E6300
Asus P5VD2-MX (Via PM890)
integrated GPU
512 MiB RAM
3.5" SATA drive
DVD-drive
400W PSU

power consumption standby/idle/full load CPU/full load GPU
3/50/80/82W

The Via chipset seems to be pretty efficient.
You can also compare it to a recent test:
http://www.silentpcreview.com/forums/vi ... 051#301051
http://www.silentpcreview.com/forums/vi ... hp?t=35707


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