|ASUS Radeon HD 4830 Video Card EAH4830|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Video Cards|
|Written by Mathew Williams - Edited by Olin Coles|
|Wednesday, 26 November 2008|
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Asus HD 4830 Power
Life is not as affordable as it used to be, and items such as fuel and electrical energy top the list of resources that have exploded in price over the past few years. Add to this the limit of non-renewable resources compared to demand and you can see that the prices are only going to get worse. Planet Earth is needs our help, and needs it badly. With forests becoming barren of vegetation and snow capped poles quickly turning brown, the technology industry has a new attitude towards suddenly becoming "green". I'll spare you the powerful marketing hype that I get from various manufacturers every day, and get right to the point: your CPU has been doing a lot more to save the planet than your GPU has... at least up until now. Below is a chart with the isolated video card power consumption (not system total) displayed in Watts for each specified test product:
These power consumption results go against all of the trends we've seen so far. Given the 10% performance advantage of the HD 4850, you might expect the EAH4830 to consume less power. However, this clearly isn't the case. In fact, the EAH4830 consumes slightly more power. This could be due to a number of factors, but most likely ATI's binning process that I mentioned earlier. It's possible that the card I received simply required a little more voltage to get the GPU stable. To generalize from these results, though, I would have to test a few more 4830's to confirm that these results are consistent accross other 4830's.
Asus HD 4830 Temperature
Temperature and power consumption tend to be directly proportional. As power consumption increases, the heat output of the video card's components increase as well. Video card manufacturers usually stick to the reference heatsink and fan when a product series launches, but soon after, develop their own cooling solution. These custom cooling solutions can have a big impact, often reducing temperatures by 20-40%. To test cooling performance, Benchmark Reviews makes use of the temperature sensors built into modern video cards. We first measure the video card in an idle 2D windows environment to get the idle reading. We then max out the GPU load using FurMark and record the highest temperature reached in a 30 minute period. It should be noted that the case design and fans can have a large impact on these results, as well as ambient temperature. These tests were conducted using an Antec P180B case, with all fans set to low and an ambient room temperature of 74 degrees Fahrenheit.
The temperature results look great for the EAH4830. Even though its power consumption is on par with the HD 4850, the EAH4830 is considerably cooler. Asus clearly has a winning heatsink and fan design on this card. Although it comes at the cost of an extra expansion slot beneath the video card, the increased thermal performance is definitely worth it.