Page 1:A More Affordable Gaming Alternative
Page 2:CPU And Cooler
Page 3:Motherboard And Memory
Page 4:Graphics Card And Hard Drive
Page 5:Case, Power Supply, And Optical Drive
Page 6:Assembling My Gaming Box
Page 7:Improving High-Res Gaming By Overclocking Graphics
Page 8:Test System Configuration And Benchmarks
Page 9:Results: Synthetics
Page 10:Results: Audio And Video
Page 11:Results: Adobe Creative Suite
Page 12:Results: Productivity
Page 13:Results: Compression
Page 14:Results: Battlefield 4 And Battlefield 3
Page 15:Results: F1 2012, Grid 2, and Arma 3
Page 16:Results: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim And Far Cry 3
Page 17:Power Consumption And Temperatures
Page 18:Summarizing The Performance Of Three Gaming Builds
Page 19:Did I Achieve My Goals, Or Is This A Failure?
Power Consumption And Temperatures
Power-saving features are typically left on for each round of benchmarking. Only the overclocked $650 system didn't benefit from them. When it came to tuning the FX-6300's clock rates, I jumped into the firmware and disabled any setting that might negatively affect stability or performance consistency.
Sporting an efficient Haswell-based Core i3 processor and powered by an 80 PLUS Gold-rated power supply, my most recent effort sips power at idle and under host processing load. There's an overclocked, voltage-bumped GeForce GTX 770 in there, but still, peak draw from the wall remains under 300 W. You most certainly don't need the 600 W power supply recommended by Zotac. Our 450 W PSU has oodles of output in reserve.
Low power means that this quarter's PC is also the coolest-running in today's competition. Notice that CPU and GPU temperatures drop after applying an overclock. Simply, the CPU is left alone, and airflow increases by speeding up the cooling fans through Asus' firmware (from the Standard setting to Turbo). I also disabled control over the rear case fan by simply running it at 100% duty cycle. Finally, Zotac's thermal solution was quiet, so I created a custom fan profile to blow more air over the card and its components.
Of course, faster fans generate more noise. While this is by no means a quiet PC, it wouldn’t take much to pull its output down to a whisper. Surprisingly, overclocking didn't really add much noise since the 120 mm intake fan up front is the loudest. It doesn't vibrate, and is by no means obnoxious. But there is an unquestionable sound of rushing air. Needless to say, my fondness of the Line-M enclosure certainly diminishes when its bundled fans are running all-out.
- A More Affordable Gaming Alternative
- CPU And Cooler
- Motherboard And Memory
- Graphics Card And Hard Drive
- Case, Power Supply, And Optical Drive
- Assembling My Gaming Box
- Improving High-Res Gaming By Overclocking Graphics
- Test System Configuration And Benchmarks
- Results: Synthetics
- Results: Audio And Video
- Results: Adobe Creative Suite
- Results: Productivity
- Results: Compression
- Results: Battlefield 4 And Battlefield 3
- Results: F1 2012, Grid 2, and Arma 3
- Results: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim And Far Cry 3
- Power Consumption And Temperatures
- Summarizing The Performance Of Three Gaming Builds
- Did I Achieve My Goals, Or Is This A Failure?