Power Consumption Tests
Using our new PROVA Power Analyzer WM-01 or "Power Thingy" as it has become quickly referred to by our readers, we are now able to find out what kind of power is being used by our test system and the associated graphics cards installed. Keep in mind; it tests the complete system (minus LCD monitor, which is plugged directly into an AC wall socket).
There are a few important notes to remember though; while our maximum power is taken in 3DMark 06 at the exact same point, we have seen in particular tests the power being drawn as much as 10% more. We test at the exact same stage every time; therefore tests should be very consistent and accurate.
The other thing to remember is that our test system is bare minimum - only a 7,200RPM SATA-II single hard drive is used without CD-ROM or many cooling fans.
So while the system might draw 400 watts in our test system, placing it into your own PC with a number of other items, the draw is inevitably going to be higher.
There is no doubt that the Crossfire setup is drawing out the big numbers. Hitting over 450 Watts is pretty serious and you want to make sure you have a decent power supply. While we grab our maximum wattage in 3DMark 06 when doing some serious CPU overclocking, we managed to get over 500 Watt power draw on the Crossfire solution in 3DMark 06. So if you also consider the fact that you will most likely be able to overclock your Crossfire setup in due course, make sure you pay some serious attention to the power supply you're using.
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