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How "Green" is your PC?

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July 25, 2010 2:56:32 PM

Hi everyone. I just like to know about your experience in power efficient PC setup. Any comments are welcome. Even the opposing "why should I build an Atom based rig if I can get myself an i7 one?" kind of post...lol

Please attach any info regarding your hardware setup or power settings, I'd be very grateful if you do. Thanks! :D 

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a b B Homebuilt system
July 25, 2010 3:09:50 PM

"why should I build an Atom based rig if I can get myself an i7 one?"

This is a no brainer:

If u dun mind your machine being low power (with Atom) but start crawling once your needs grow outside surfing the net then by all means...:p 
July 25, 2010 4:19:19 PM

Well, I was just giving an example of a "performance minded" PC owner will comment about his setup.

Although the context is about having as lowest power as possible, but those with a high spec'd setup are also welcome. It would be interesting to see how an i7 based owner tweaks his PC to lower its power consumption. Even if he doesn't, any opinion is welcome.

Since you're the first to post, what kind of setup do you have, batuchka? How do you describe your rig and its relevance with this thread's topic?
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July 25, 2010 4:35:36 PM

well, a lot of people here with the high powered rigs aren't going to care about power consumption, if fact most people with the i7 have it overclocked and using more power than normal

i think the only computer i have that would be considered green is after i rebuild the HTPC, athlon II x2 IGP single HDD, right now though it's the same but with 5 HDD's as it is my file server as well. And maybe my laptop as it is powered off of a 95w power adapter (Core i7-720qm + 5650 + 15.6" LED backlit 1080p display)
July 25, 2010 4:58:31 PM

mindless728 said:
well, a lot of people here with the high powered rigs aren't going to care about power consumption, if fact most people with the i7 have it overclocked and using more power than normal

i think the only computer i have that would be considered green is after i rebuild the HTPC, athlon II x2 IGP single HDD, right now though it's the same but with 5 HDD's as it is my file server as well. And maybe my laptop as it is powered off of a 95w power adapter (Core i7-720qm + 5650 + 15.6" LED backlit 1080p display)

I guess you're right, since the beginning i7 owners don't really care about lowering their rig's power consumption. On the contrary,they increase it for the purpose of maximizing the performance. Well, everyone's got their own thing about this issue.

Athlon II X2? What a coinsidence. That's my current CPU! And you consider it an HTPC. DO you tweak its voltage settings? I also use the IGP, but that's only because I don't have the budget to get a decent GPU :cry: 

But even with 5 HDDs which are not a power consumer, your Athlon based file server PC should still be a "green" one. Compared to your 95W i7 laptop and assuming the file server PC is always in idle, which is the lowest power consuming?
July 25, 2010 5:06:17 PM

damasvara said:
I guess you're right, since the beginning i7 owners don't really care about lowering their rig's power consumption. On the contrary,they increase it for the purpose of maximizing the performance. Well, everyone's got their own thing about this issue.

Athlon II X2? What a coinsidence. That's my current CPU! And you consider it an HTPC. DO you tweak its voltage settings? I also use the IGP, but that's only because I don't have the budget to get a decent GPU :cry: 

But even with 5 HDDs which are not a power consumer, your Athlon based file server PC should still be a "green" one. Compared to your 95W i7 laptop and assuming the file server PC is always in idle, which is the lowest power consuming?


specifically the athlon II x2 240 as you don't need anything more than that for HTPC stuff, yes i have the voltage minimized (1.175v instead or 1.325v) under %100 load, and the IGP has no problem decoding blu-ray discs so that's fine as well

between the two at idle (i consider browsing the web as idle), the laptop will win
July 25, 2010 5:19:55 PM

mindless728 said:
specifically the athlon II x2 240 as you don't need anything more than that for HTPC stuff, yes i have the voltage minimized (1.175v instead or 1.325v) under %100 load, and the IGP has no problem decoding blu-ray discs so that's fine as well

between the two at idle (i consider browsing the web as idle), the laptop will win

That's interesting. I know that a laptop usually has a lower power consumption than a desktop PC. But an i7 with 15.6" screen?

Specifically, how much do you undervolt the P3-state (idle), since I can only go as low as 0.8V CPU(V) and 1.1 NB(V). Although 0.75V also works, the system tends to "hang" after a long period of idle. Guess maybe it's too "dry" (it's a term in automotive, regarding too little gasoline to air mixture in a car, just a comparison though... lol)

Have you ever measure the actual power draw of that file server PC? Just curious, since if you have measured it, then my PC should have a lower power consumption than yours.
July 25, 2010 5:28:06 PM

damasvara said:
That's interesting. I know that a laptop usually has a lower power consumption than a desktop PC. But an i7 with 15.6" screen?

Specifically, how much do you undervolt the P3-state (idle), since I can only go as low as 0.8V CPU(V) and 1.1 NB(V). Although 0.75V also works, the system tends to "hang" after a long period of idle. Guess maybe it's too "dry" (it's a term in automotive, regarding too little gasoline to air mixture in a car, just a comparison though... lol)

Have you ever measure the actual power draw of that file server PC? Just curious, since if you have measured it, then my PC should have a lower power consumption than yours.


well it's funny, the 1.175v is normal operating speed (2.8GHz) and cool and quiet just doesn't turn on anymore (i have it on in the BIOS)

no i haven't actually measured the power draw of either system, i keep putting off getting a Kill A Watt even though i spend hundreds each year on computer parts

EDIT: yeah the i7 with a 15" screen is awesome since the screen is 1920x1080, it also has 8GB ram (it's my mobile development computer)
July 25, 2010 5:39:48 PM

mindless728 said:
well it's funny, the 1.175v is normal operating speed (2.8GHz) and cool and quiet just doesn't turn on anymore (i have it on in the BIOS)

no i haven't actually measured the power draw of either system, i keep putting off getting a Kill A Watt even though i spend hundreds each year on computer parts

EDIT: yeah the i7 with a 15" screen is awesome since the screen is 1920x1080, it also has 8GB ram (it's my mobile development computer)

8GB of RAM???.. That is some serious ammo!!!.. :o 

By the way, what's a mobile development computer?.. :heink: 
July 25, 2010 5:44:37 PM

damasvara said:
8GB of RAM???.. That is some serious ammo!!!.. :o 

By the way, what's a mobile development computer?.. :heink: 


i am a programmer i do most of it inside of Virtual Machines (so they are portable) so 4GB for the host OS and 4GB for the guest (or 2GB + 2GB for 2 VM's)
July 25, 2010 5:49:47 PM

mindless728 said:
i am a programmer i do most of it inside of Virtual Machines (so they are portable) so 4GB for the host OS and 4GB for the guest (or 2GB + 2GB for 2 VM's)

Ooohhh, I see (well, not really... :p  )

But I just realized your post about the C 'n Q, if by any chance your Athlon based PC can go to the P3-state (say at the same settings as mine with K10Stat), would it have a lower power consumption compared to your i7 laptop?
July 25, 2010 5:54:09 PM

damasvara said:
Ooohhh, I see (well, not really... :p  )

But I just realized your post about the C 'n Q, if by any chance your Athlon based PC can go to the P3-state (say at the same settings as mine with K10Stat), would it have a lower power consumption compared to your i7 laptop?


idk, i would really have to get the Kill a Watt first to see, the 95w is for the whole laptop (max) where as with the athlon HTPC you have the 45w TDP max cpu + (lets just say the HTPC) 1 HDD, 1 BD-rom, 1 tv tuner, the northbridge (including gpu) + the south bridge then factor in efficiency for both (PSU and adapter)
July 25, 2010 6:26:56 PM

mindless728 said:
idk, i would really have to get the Kill a Watt first to see, the 95w is for the whole laptop (max) where as with the athlon HTPC you have the 45w TDP max cpu + (lets just say the HTPC) 1 HDD, 1 BD-rom, 1 tv tuner, the northbridge (including gpu) + the south bridge then factor in efficiency for both (PSU and adapter)

That IS some complicated calculation... that Kill-A-Watt thingie is really something when it comes to calculating power draw afterall.

Well then, it's currently about an hour past midnight here in Jakarta, Indonesia. I'd like to see how the others respond to this topic first thing tommorow morning when I wake up. Afterall, "Green PC" concept is quite a hype nowadays. Even Kingston makes a LoVo RAM to answer the challenge. There should be more people besides the 3 of us whose interested in the concept. By the mean time... :sleep:  :sleep: 
!