Skip to main content

System Builder Marathon, Q4 2012: $1,000 Enthusiast PC

Power And Temperature

Idle power consumption is pretty close when you look at both boxes. Moreover, power use under a graphics load is fairly similar. No surprise there, right? We're using the exact same card in both machines, after all.

The real differentiator comes from swapping back and forth between processors under load. AMD's FX uses about 150 W more than Intel's Core i5.

This is amazing. Why? The FX-8350 is actually undervolted when we overclock it. And yet, it draws significantly more power from the wall.

Thermal readings require some context, since voltages, heat sinks, and fans all have an impact on how far we're able to push each platform. However, we observe that the GPU idle and load numbers are very similar between both builds (as we'd expect). The Core i5 idles much cooler than AMD's FX. The Core i5 is also cooler at its stock settings. Of course, when we overclock, though, both get pushed as far as possible at their respective clock rates. And so, they end up roughly as hot.