Temperature and Power Consumption
System power usage is measured at the AC/DC PSU (the Corsair AX1200i), which I have connected to another system to measure the test system, and I have a wall meter as a backup to verify. The CPU power is measured through the eight-pin connection, which is hooked up to a hall effect IC that measures current and puts out a voltage in proportion to the current. A National Instruments ADC logs that voltage; afterward, I convert that into current.
Note on Thermal Images: In the temperature section, we use our Seek thermal imaging camera to capture the surface temperatures of major components on the board. I look at the VRM, and then all other things that light up the screen. If there is something to worry about, then I will state it; otherwise, I will just show the hotter running parts of the board for fun. Unless a component is over 80-90C, then there really isn't anything to worry about.
All systems will act differently, so I will look for commonalities, such as how far from the VRM the heat spreads through the PCB, and the difference in temperature between the front side and backside of the PCB. Keep in mind that the majority of the heat from the VRM goes into the PCB as it is a giant soldered-on copper heat sink. A smaller difference in temperature between the back and front of the PCB points towards a more effective heat sink.
Here the board is idle on the left, and full CPU/Memory load is depicted on the right (Intel Burn Test). You will notice that the VRM runs pretty cool on the topside. The inductors are cooled well, which reduces the chances of the VRM being the hot spot on the front side of the PCB.
There is only a 3C increase in temperatures near the chokes from idle to load.
There is a 7C increase on the back of the PCB, which isn't bad either. These temperatures are among the averages we see on full ATX boards with even more phases; this is because of the IR3550's great temperature characteristics.
Here the system is overclocked to 4.5GHz. On the left are idle shots, and on the right are load shots. You can see the PCB gets warmer with an overclock, but this is normal behavior.
There is a pretty big increase in temperature here, but at 40C on the front side of the PCB, this is actually one of the cooler running VRMs I have tested.
This board was designed with an eight layer PCB, which is totally overkill, but serves as a great heat sink. You can see that the PCB absorbs a lot of the heat; however, it is designed to do so. Overall, this VRM performed better than I thought it would since it is only six phases and in such a small space. It competes with those big VRMs you see on full sized ATX boards.
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- Page 1 [Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing]
- Page 2 [Packaging and the X99 Micro]
- Page 3 [X99 Micro Circuit Analysis]
- Page 4 [BIOS and Software]
- Page 5 [Test Setup and Overclocking]
- Page 6 [CPU, Memory, and System Benchmarks]
- Page 7 [System IO Benchmarks]
- Page 8 [Temperature and Power Consumption]
- Page 9 [Final Thoughts]