Power Consumption, Battery Life, And Efficiency
The x17's idle power consumption is slightly lower than the rest of the field, and yet its full-load draw is nearly identical to what we measure from the NP9150. That also means Digital Storm's machine gets about the same gaming battery life, which is a respectable 45 minutes (give or take a few).
Battery Eater Pro concurs with our battery-backed gaming tests, showing the x17 and NP9150 with nearly identical battery life at medium load.
Efficiency compares energy to work, so we use average performance to begin its calculation. Xotic PC's NP9150 was first notebook in our lab with AMD's Radeon HD 7970M inside, so it sets the basis for comparing Digital Storm's competing model.
Remembering that the x17 is less expensive and armed with a larger screen (something we certainly consider valuable), a modest 7% performance shortfall sets it up for great overall value rating. But before we get to that, let’s see how its performance compares to its power consumption.
The original graphics drivers were optimized for Clevo's Radeon HD 7970M module, so we’re not surprised to see it take a small lead in overall efficiency. We’d ignore the performance average, though, and go straight to gaming performance when is comes to choosing the right driver for a gaming notebook. Efficiency goes down a bit, we're sure, because AMD's GPU is no longer starved for data, leaving it underutilized. By fixing Enduro, the Pitcairn chip uses more power, but serves up better performance in return.