|MSI N560GTX Ti Hawk Video Card|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Video Cards|
|Written by Steven Iglesias-Hearst|
|Thursday, 19 May 2011|
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VGA Power Consumption
Life is not as affordable as it used to be, and items such as gasoline, natural gas, and electricity all top the list of resources which have exploded in price over the past few years. Add to this the limit of non-renewable resources compared to current demands, and you can see that the prices are only going to get worse. Planet Earth 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 turning "green". I'll spare you the powerful marketing hype that gets sent from various manufacturers every day, and get right to the point: your computer hasn't been doing much to help save energy... at least up until now.
For power consumption tests, Benchmark Reviews utilizes an 80-Plus Gold rated Corsair HX750w (model: CMPSU-750HX) This power supply unit has been tested to provide over 90% typical efficiency by Ecos Plug Load Solutions. To measure isolated video card power consumption, I used the energenie ENER007 power meter made by Sandal Plc (UK).
A baseline test is taken without a video card installed inside our test computer system, which is allowed to boot into Windows-7 and rest idle at the login screen before power consumption is recorded. Once the baseline reading has been taken, the graphics card is installed and the system is again booted into Windows and left idle at the login screen. Our final loaded power consumption reading is taken with the video card running a stress test using FurMark. Below is a chart with the isolated video card power consumption (not system total) displayed in Watts for each specified test product:
* Results are accurate to within +/- 5W.
At Idle the MSI GTX 560Ti Hawk consumes 47 (166-119) watts at idle and 227 (346-119) watts when running full load using the test method outlined above. The MSI GTX 560Ti Hawk uses more power at idle and at load than the reference GTX 560Ti (17W idle / 199W load), this can be attributed to the above average overclock. The idle power consumption can be lowered by installing the bundled MSI 'APS' utility that automatically controls the usage of PWM phases to save power when they are not essential. As we can see in the GPU-Z screenshot below the MSI GTX 560Ti Hawk uses 0.95v when idle, when under load it uses 1.062v.
In the next section we will be discussing our overclocking adventure with the MSI GTX 560Ti Hawk.