Heat & Acoustics / Power Consumption
Heat & Acoustics
Since these tests were done on an open test bench with a 120mm fan placed a good 6” away from the card, I really must say that the temperatures came as a bit of a surprise. 61°C is pretty amazing for a passively cooled HD 4850 1GB considering this is what many would call a higher performance card. If that isn’t awe-inspiring, it is also nearly 30 degrees cooler than the stock heatsink. Gigabyte definitely hit this nail on the head.
For this test we hooked up our power supply to a UPM power meter that will log the power consumption of the whole system twice every second. In order to stress the GPU as much as possible we once again use the Batch Render test in 3DMark06 and let it run for 30 minutes to determine the peak power consumption while letting the card sit at a stable Windows desktop for 30 minutes to determine the peak idle power consumption. We have also included several other tests as well. Please note that after extensive testing, we have found that simply plugging in a power meter to a wall outlet or UPS will NOT give you accurate power consumption numbers due to slight changes in the input voltage. Thus we use a Tripp-Lite 1800W line conditioner between the 120V outlet and the power meter.
Gigabyte spends quite a bit of time talking about how they are using higher quality components in order to lower power consumption and considering the results, this is no idle boast. Even though the idle power consumption isn’t that much different from the reference version, this card’s efficiency at load made us stand up and take notice. Even with 1GB of memory and a slightly overclocked core, it was still consumed a good 26W less than the reference version. What more is there to say other than “wow”.