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Motherboard Comparison

Do-It-Yourself Solar-Powered PC: Hardware

We wondered if there might be a big difference in energy consumption among motherboards built around the AMD 690G chipset. For purposes of comparison, we also looked at the MSI K9AG Neo2-Digital motherboard, the equipment on which matches the Gigabyte motherboard exactly, except that it comes in standard ATX form factor instead.

We used the MSI K9AG Neo2 Digital as a point of comparison

Gigabyte and MSI motherboards compared

The MSI motherboard consumes about 14 W more when idle, primarily because Cool and Quiet did not work - despite the vendor's claim of a state-of-the art BIOS. At full load, the MSI motherboard consumed an additional 6 W, a difference that we attribute to its built-in features such as its network and Firewire chips.

12 Volt Solar PC System
Component Idle Max load
PSU 5.00 W 14.20 W
CPU 8.49 W 38.66 W
Cooler 1.00 W 1.00W
Motherboard 7.78 W 19.71 W
Total: 61.23 W 115.60 W
max. 160 Watt Custom PSU
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