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AMD FirePro W8100 Review: The Professional Radeon R9 290

Power Consumption: Detailed Results

Power Consumption: Idle

Since workstation graphics cards are often in-use more than not, the consumption floor isn't as important to us. Still, though, we all want to know where the FirePro idles.

At 14 W, the W8100 lands a bit higher than AMD's Radeon R9 290, and the extra GDDR5 isn't enough to explain the delta. My best guess would be that a beefier power supply and a higher minimum voltage push our measurement of the professional board higher. The approximately 1.8 W of additional draw at idle is nothing to worry about, though.

Power Consumption Scenario: Primarily Graphics

Rendering and compute workloads can’t really be teased apart completely, since so many of today's tasks are mixed. The FirePro W8100’s 188.4 W measurement is good, especially since it almost matches the Quadro K6000’s 188.7 W.

Those peaks above 300 W shouldn’t pose any major problems for decent PSUs. The less-than-70 W maximum load demanded from the motherboard isn’t an issue, either.

Power Consumption Scenario: Primarily Computing

A look at the curve illustrates that peaks are a lot less pronounced when more constant compute-oriented tasks are executed. They can't be avoided entirely, though.

It’s a lot more interesting that the measured power consumption is almost exactly the same as in the previous chart. As a result, we now know that 190 W is the boundary AMD's FirePro W8100 just won’t cross.

In comparison, Nvidia's Quadro K6000 registers 202.3 W in this scenario, which means that it draws almost 12 W more than the FirePro W8100. Depending on the application, AMD’s new workstation card can compete a bit better in benchmarks of efficiency. Catching up or even passing Nvidia's flagship in this discipline is out of the question. Nevertheless, what AMD accomplishes with its latest offering is a positive development on many levels.