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Power Consumption, Noise Levels, And Temperature Readings

Roundup: Mainstream Graphics Cards From ATI And Nvidia
By

Power consumption is measured in watts for the whole test platform. The 2D idle value comes from the normal Windows user interface without any load and (and with Aero turned off). The 3D value is measured when the CPU and graphics card are operating under heavy load (peak value). Measurements took place at the wall socket. PSU efficiency averaged around 82.4% (according to manufacturer measurements).

Power Consumption

2D Watts

3D Watts

GeForce GTX 275 (896 MB)

156

351

GeForce GTX 260 216 SPs (896 MB)

150

295

GeForce GTX 260 (896 MB)

154

330

GeForce GTS 250 (1,024 MB)

156

265

GeForce 9800 GTX+ (512 MB) 182.46

165

277

GeForce 9800 GTX (512 MB)

170

278

Zotac GeForce 9800 GT (512 MB) (9800 GT 512 MB)

173

292

GeForce 9800 GT (512 MB)

172

282

GeForce 9600 GT (1,024 MB)

145

195

GeForce 9600 GT (512 MB)

146

206

GeForce 8800 GTS (512 MB)

171

282

GeForce 8800 GT (1,024 MB)

148

210

GeForce 8800 GT (512 MB)

160

254

GeForce 8800 Ultra (768 MB)

203

328

GeForce 8800 GTX (768 MB)

186

298

GeForce 8800 GTS (640 MB)

178

261

GeForce 8800 GTS (320 MB)

170

248

GeForce 8600 GTS (512 MB)

147

192

Radeon HD 4890 (1,024 MB)

182

312

Radeon HD 4870 (512 MB)

191

288

Radeon HD 4850 (512 MB)

166

270

Sapphire HD 4830 (512 MB) (HD 4830 512 MB)

140

234

Radeon HD 4830 (512 MB)

140

234

Sapphire HD 4770 512 MB (HD 4770 512 MB)

153

203

Radeon HD 4770 (512 MB)

152

199

HIS H467QT512P (HD 4670 2x512 MB) CF

143

258

Radeon HD 4670 (2x512 MB) CF

143

256

HIS H467QT512P (HD 4670 512 MB)

129

187

HIS H467PS1GP (HD 4670 1,024 MB)

134

176

Radeon HD 4670 (512 MB)

125

178

Radeon HD 3870 (512 MB)

139

223

Radeon HD 3850 (256 MB)

134

197

Noise Levels

2D dB(A)

3D dB(A)

GeForce GTX 275 (896 MB)

36.8

44.2

GeForce GTX 260 (896 MB)

37.5

41.2

GeForce GTX 260 (896 MB)

37.8

53.8

GeForce GTS 250 (1,024 MB)

39.6

50.2

GeForce 9800 GTX+ (512 MB)

36.6

41.4

GeForce 9800 GTX (512 MB)

37.2

44.8

Zotac GeForce 9800 GT (512 MB) (9800 GT 512 MB)

36.3

46.8

GeForce 9800 GT (512 MB)

36.3

46.2

GeForce 9600 GT (1,024 MB)

36.9

42.3

GeForce 9600 GT (512 MB)

0.0

0.0

GeForce 8800 GTS (512 MB)

36.4

39.5

GeForce 8800 GT (1,024 MB)

36.6

40.8

GeForce 8800 GT (512 MB)

36.5

40.8

GeForce 8800 Ultra (768 MB)

37.1

44.6

GeForce 8800 GTX (768 MB)

37.5

40.5

GeForce 8800 GTS (640 MB)

37.1

37.4

GeForce 8800 GTS (320 MB)

36.2

37.0

GeForce 8600 GTS (512 MB)

46.6

47.2

Radeon HD 4890 (1024 MB)

36.7

48.4

Radeon HD 4870 (512 MB)

38.0

49.4

Radeon HD 4850 (512 MB)

36.2

47.9

Sapphire HD 4830 (512 MB) (HD 4830 512 MB)

40.5

41.2

Radeon HD 4830 (512 MB)

40.5

41.2

Sapphire HD 4770 (512 MB) (HD 4770 512 MB)

36.6

37.4

Radeon HD 4770 (512 MB)

36.3

38.5

HIS H467QT512P (HD 4670 2x512 MB) CF

37.3

37.3

Radeon HD 4670 (2x512 MB) CF

37.3

37.3

HIS H467QT512P (HD 4670 512 MB)

36.5

36.5

HIS H467PS1GP (HD 4670 1024 MB)

0.0

0.0

Radeon HD 4670 (512 MB)

36.2

36.2

Radeon HD 3870 (512 MB)

35.9

38.7

Radeon HD 3850 (256 MB)

36.4

36.5

Temperatures (degrees Celsius)

2D Mode

3D Mode

GeForce GTX 275 (896 MB)

47

92

GeForce GTX 260 (896 MB)

45

81

GeForce GTX 260 (896 MB)

48

90

GeForce GTS 250 (1,024 MB)

44

77

GeForce 9800 GTX+ (512 MB) 182.46

48

81

GeForce 9800 GTX (512 MB)

55

74

Zotac GeForce 9800 GT 512 MB (9800 GT 512 MB)

58

87

GeForce 9800 GT (512 MB)

56

84

GeForce 9600 GT (1,024 MB)

43

70

GeForce 9600 GT (512 MB)

48

88

GeForce 8800 GTS (512 MB)

62

88

GeForce 8800 GT (1,024 MB)

44

62

GeForce 8800 GT (512 MB)

60

98

GeForce 8800 Ultra (768 MB)

56

95

GeForce 8800 GTX (768 MB)

58

83

GeForce 8800 GTS (640 MB)

55

80

GeForce 8800 GTS (320 MB)

52

77

GeForce 8600 GTS (512 MB)

41

57

Radeon HD 4890 (1024 MB)

60

80

Radeon HD 4870 (512 MB)

60

74

Radeon HD 4850 (512 MB)

79

94

Sapphire HD4830 (512 MB) (HD 4830 512 MB)

34

61

Radeon HD 4830 (512 MB)

34

61

Sapphire HD 4770 (512 MB) (HD 4770 512 MB)

44

71

Radeon HD 4770 (512 MB)

52

72

HIS H467QT512P (HD 4670 2x512 MB) CF

39/34

79

Radeon HD 4670 (2x512 MB) CF

38/34

75

HIS H467QT512P (HD 4670 512 MB)

37

71

HIS H467PS1GP (HD 4670 1,024 MB)

41

70

Radeon HD 4670 (512 MB)

44

83

Radeon HD 3870 (512 MB)

51

92

Radeon HD 3850 (256 MB)

52

90

Display all 74 comments.
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  • 1 Hide
    Bloodblender , August 10, 2009 6:06 AM
    All I can say is that Tom's recent articles have been an excellent read, and this exactly the stuff I (as well as many others) require for their research purposes. Keep up the great work!
  • 3 Hide
    dirtmountain , August 10, 2009 6:21 AM
    Nice article,very well done, but you need to show the 4670 in CF as costing $162, not $81 as shown in the final chart.
  • -4 Hide
    rambo117 , August 10, 2009 6:55 AM
    the iceQ concept is amazing. keeps my 3870s nice and chilly (70C) while hardcore gaming
    and not to mention they both look intimidating in my case ;) 
  • 0 Hide
    pij , August 10, 2009 6:58 AM
    Quick question -

    4770 in crossfire or single 4890 best bet???..
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , August 10, 2009 7:01 AM
    to me the gaming benches are most important but energy efficiency and heat dissipation run a close 2nd. thanks for providing it all!
  • 8 Hide
    Julianbreaker , August 10, 2009 7:36 AM
    Newegg has quite a few 4850s that retail for $100 and it appears to be getting consistently better benchmarks than the 4770. I am confused as to why you would not recommend it over the 4770. Perhaps you are confused by simple maths.
  • -4 Hide
    radiowars , August 10, 2009 8:09 AM
    PijQuick question - 4770 in crossfire or single 4890 best bet???..

    They already did a whole article on that...
  • 8 Hide
    bucifer , August 10, 2009 8:35 AM
    I don't understand why you still won't use the 1GB version of the Radeon 4870. It's clear to me that the card is limited by it's amount of video memory when using hi-res, AA and AF.
    Searching for prices in US and Europe it retails cheaper than the GTX260(192 or 216).
    The point is: the card should be included in the test just as the GTX260-216. It's clearly a better option than the 512 mb version and it's good for comparison!
  • -2 Hide
    masterjaw , August 10, 2009 8:52 AM
    Nice article here. Most importantly, no unnecessary bias included.
  • 8 Hide
    holodust , August 10, 2009 8:57 AM
    Nice article, but I don't see how testing these cards on i7 920@3.8 fits into mainstream.
  • 5 Hide
    Hamsterabed , August 10, 2009 9:08 AM
    makes it a control to make sure they are only ratting the graphics cards and not the cpu. makes sure the GPUS are the limiting factor
  • 0 Hide
    qwertymac93 , August 10, 2009 9:18 AM
    something is bothering me. i have left 4 dead, and when i play it at 8xAA, 16xAF, i get higher frame rates then you do(close to 100). i have a 4830 and the res i play at is 1440x900. i know its not the same as 1650x1050, but the extra AA and AF should at least keep them close, but i get over 20fps more then your 4850! i don't have a fancy i7 and still. my 4830 is clocked at 700/1000. did you set the aa/af in the drivers or in-game, because in-game is almost always better.
  • 0 Hide
    Sihastru , August 10, 2009 9:52 AM
    qwertymac93, probably your driver settings (optimizations) are overriding the in game engine settings.
  • 0 Hide
    pij , August 10, 2009 10:04 AM
    buciferI don't understand why you still won't use the 1GB version of the Radeon 4870. It's clear to me that the card is limited by it's amount of video memory when using hi-res, AA and AF. Searching for prices in US and Europe it retails cheaper than the GTX260(192 or 216).The point is: the card should be included in the test just as the GTX260-216. It's clearly a better option than the 512 mb version and it's good for comparison!



    Sorry I thought the article was 'mainstream graphics cards' not 4890 vs 2x4770's in crossfire ! Blimey I must be going mad.
  • -2 Hide
    pij , August 10, 2009 10:05 AM
    whoops wrong quote - how silly of me.
  • 1 Hide
    pij , August 10, 2009 10:07 AM

    They already did a whole article on that...


    Sorry I thought the article was 'mainstream graphics cards' not 4890 vs 2x4770's in crossfire ! Blimey I must be going mad.

  • 3 Hide
    amnotanoobie , August 10, 2009 10:12 AM
    JulianbreakerNewegg has quite a few 4850s that retail for $100 and it appears to be getting consistently better benchmarks than the 4770. I am confused as to why you would not recommend it over the 4770. Perhaps you are confused by simple maths.


    The only reason that I could think of wherein the 4770 is better, is the smaller manufacturing process which should make it cooler and consume less power. Though if raw performance is your concern, the 4850 may be better.

    holodustNice article, but I don't see how testing these cards on i7 920@3.8 fits into mainstream.


    They usually do it on the highest rig they have to eliminate as much possible bottlenecks as possible. I think they were just making sure that video card's respective scores do not flat-out (i.e. the GTX 275, 260, 4870 and 4890 displaying the same scores when they are clearly a bit different hardware). Ideally even on lower-end hardware this chart should still show the same order in terms of performace, though you'd probably lose a few fps.
  • -2 Hide
    qwertymac93 , August 10, 2009 10:16 AM
    gee, a thumbs down for asking a question, interesting crowd huh. no, all my driver settings are set to "application settings: and i can visually confirm that the AA is indeed working. i think its just a different level. the frame rates i was quoting was from the rooftop part.
  • -2 Hide
    haplo602 , August 10, 2009 10:20 AM
    amnotanoobieThey usually do it on the highest rig they have to eliminate as much possible bottlenecks as possible. I think they were just making sure that video card's respective scores do not flat-out (i.e. the GTX 275, 260, 4870 and 4890 displaying the same scores when they are clearly a bit different hardware). Ideally even on lower-end hardware this chart should still show the same order in terms of performace, though you'd probably lose a few fps.


    well then it begs the question, which card is more platform limited. I mean the driver may scale differently with CPU power, so the card winning on the overclocked i7 may actualy be the worst on a stock PII X3 720 BE, or X2 550 BE.

    thus testing mainstream GPUs on high-end platforms has a flaw here ...
  • 3 Hide
    bucifer , August 10, 2009 10:38 AM
    Pij your IQ is below the sea level.
    masterjawNice article here. Most importantly, no unnecessary bias included.

    As for this statement I have one OBVIOUS mention. Why did they use The Last Remnant for testing again?
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