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Paying The Price In Power And Efficiency

System Builder Marathon Bonus: Newegg Customer Choice PC

Both Nvidia's GeForce GTX 560 Ti and AMD's Radeon HD 7970 are known to be fairly efficient, but the Radeon HD 7970 employs a newer 28 nm manufacturing process and a handful of technologies specifically intended to help reduce power consumption. As a result, Don's $1300 PC takes one of its few wins in our power-conservation chart. And that's not a bad place to show some dominance, since we'll be considering efficiency here in a second.

Significant performance advantages could end up being offset by the Customer Choice PC’s higher power consumption in our efficiency charts. Let's set the $1300 build’s performance as our 100% baseline.

Since nothing can be more than 100% efficient, we move the baseline to “0” in our efficiency charts by subtracting one from our Performance/Power calculation.

Today's Customer Choice PC remains inefficient, regardless of its excellent performance. Overclocking actually improves its efficiency rating, since performance scales upward at a higher rate than power.

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