Electricity Usage (was Wireless Cards)

Shane Hathaway shane at hathawaymix.org
Mon Nov 7 01:12:05 MST 2005

Jason Holt wrote:
> On Sun, 6 Nov 2005, Shane Hathaway wrote:
>> Some other figures I've gathered: My desktop machine, an AMD64 3200 
>> with a SATA drive and a low-end NVidia card, draws 75W most of the 
>> time and 120W when it's computing a lot.  It has a 480W PSU only 
>> because I don't want to worry about meeting the current requirements 
>> for each power rail.  The "ondemand" frequency scaling accounts for a 
>> savings of about 8W (it reduces 83W to 75W.)  My 19" LCD monitor draws 
>> 30W; it replaced a 15" CRT that drew over 100W.  My laser printer 
>> consumes 10W when it's idle and 700W when it's heating up.
> I've wondered about computer power usage for ages.  Thanks for posting 
> that!

You're welcome.  120V watt meters seem to have fallen in price 
dramatically over the past three or four years, so I got one just to 
satisfy my curiosity. :-)

However, note that seemingly minor hardware differences change power 
consumption significantly.  The computer I built for my dad has an 
Athlon XP 3000.  It draws 120W most of the time and 160W when it's busy, 
so it needs much more airflow than mine.  (But his cost less than mine 
and he uses it less, so it all works out.)  His originally had a 300W 
PSU, but the PSU died soon after I burned a DVD!  Apparently, burning a 
disc takes enough power to push some PSUs over the edge.


More information about the PLUG mailing list