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New Intel iMac uses less electricity than a reading lamp?

Discussion in 'MacBytes.com News Discussion' started by MacBytes, Feb 21, 2006.

  1. macrumors bot

  2. macrumors 65816


    Misleading Title.

    Ehhh...Directly from Apple's website, "Maximum continuous power: 180W".

    If I had just a processor in a box, then yes, I would be running at less than an average light, HOWEVER, the iMac does not run at less wattage than an average light.
  3. jsw
    Moderator emeritus


    The article disputes Apple's specs.
  4. macrumors 601


    If you read the full article, they mention the 180W Apple spec and point out that actual power consumption was at 95W with both cores full tilt. I would imagine that this means that they had the screen on too. Perhpaps the 180 is a peak? like running the optical drive, maxing the processors, screen brightness at 100% and maxing the video card?
  5. macrumors regular


    I bet it depends on what you are doing.
    Maybe rendering Maya or After Effects would get the thing draining 180W, but I'd say avergae use, web and such, won't go that high.
    Alhough, they claim they had both processors going at 100%....
    Who knows?
    How the heck to you even test how many Watts something is drawing in?
  6. jsw
    Moderator emeritus


    And don't forget supplying power on all the ports, radiating AirPort at max power, and thrashing the disk.
  7. macrumors 601


    I'm pretty sure that you can get a special box that plugs between the outlet and the power cord that will measure power consumption.
  8. jsw
    Moderator emeritus


    Yup. Power companies have been using bigger versions for, oh, forever now to calculate your bill.
  9. Moderator emeritus


    I think this is a good way to look at it. The 180W is an *average peak* ... which is a self-evident absurdity. What the 180W means is that the computer can run continuously, as long as it does not need more power than that. The power supplies are built to peak average power (or whatever you want to call it... 180W in this case) as well as peak power, or the max amount it can sustain just for a short period of time, which will be even higher.

    Think about your iMac this way. Suppose a base iMac consumes 90W. If you add a stick of memory, it still has to accommodate that in the power supply spec. If you add USB and FW devices that feed off the bus, it has to accommodate those too. And the speakers playing continuously at peak volume. And the most power-hungry hard drive option available, being written to fairly heavily. And compute intensive activities. And the DVD-player running. Etc. Because it's quite conceivable that a computer might be asked to do all of this at the same time, for an extended period of time.

    So the 180W is engineered so that even if this is the case, the computer can still function. But when you actually use it, it will consume less than the 180W. Because if it did not, for instance, and you plugged in a USB device that runs off of the bus, for instance, then you would be in the danger zone.

    This is always true of computer power supplies.

    I hope that helps?
  10. macrumors G4


    the imac psu will be a 180w psu thus that is the max it can supply, if you plug in lots of bus powered devices and ram and raptor HD's you'll have 85w to play with.
  11. macrumors member

    Are 100 watt light bulbs still standard in the US? Here in Europe low energy light bulbs are used in all sorts of places.
  12. macrumors 6502a


    Unfortunately, yes. They sell incandescent light bulbs dirt cheap, so lots of people still use them.
  13. macrumors 68030


    Less than a 100W bulb, wow :rolleyes:
  14. macrumors 65816


    100 watt reading lamp?! WTF?

    Who in the world would need a 100 watt bulb, reading lamp?! :eek:
  15. macrumors member


    I'll let you know what my electric bill looks like at the end of the month in comparison to last month. I got the imac on feb1

    (i know there are 2less days this month)
  16. macrumors member

    My college radio station's slogan was "Less wattage than a lightbulb and damn proud of it!"

    We had crystal clear reception as long as you were within 100 feet!

    Sorry. Back to your regularly scheduled program.
  17. macrumors 6502a

    Less power than a reading lamp?

    Will comparisons to the G4 iMac ever end?
  18. macrumors 68040


    I got a nice desk lamp from Target and it had a 100 watt bulb in it...I loved that thing!
  19. jhu
    macrumors 6502a


    computers in general are pretty stingy on power, especially if it's only doing word processing or web browsing.
  20. Moderator


    Staff Member

  21. nrd
    macrumors member

    I heard the new iMacs use less electricity because the gas powered core only kicks in when it's accelerating quickly.


    Seriously though, this is probably what they used. Too bad thinkgeek is sold out, or you could verify this at home.
  22. Moderator emeritus


    Tell that to the Pentium IV! :eek:
  23. macrumors regular


    yeah, the PowerMac (dual, not even quad) was like 700 Watts I think.
  24. jhu
    macrumors 6502a


    that thing's more of a space heater than a microprocessor. ok, my amd-based computer is pretty stingy on power.
  25. macrumors 6502a

    Power and money paid to the US electric cartel

    Has anyone here, who's in the USA, experimented with their electric bill by running their brand new high speed computer 24x7 for a month and then running maybe just 8 hours a day for a month and seen how much of a difference it really made?

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