OC'ed GeForce GTX 480 Shoot-Out: MSI vs Gigabyte

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Total System Power Consumption

Before bringing this article to a close, we'd like to cover a few final data points--namely power consumption and noise. Throughout all of our benchmarking and testing, we monitored how much power our test system was consuming using a power meter. Our goal was to give you all an idea as to how much power each configuration used while idling and while under a heavy workload. Please keep in mind that we were testing total system power consumption at the outlet here, not just the power being drawn by the graphics cards alone.

Total System Power Consumption
Tested at the Outlet

Our power consumption testing revealed some interesting results. Despite being clocked higher and having more fans, both the MSI N480GTX Lightning and Gigabyte GeForce GTX 480 SOC consumed less power than a stock reference card under both idle and load conditions. Now, our reference GTX 480 is an early sample, but it seems that with a little more maturity on the GPU manufacturing side, aggressive binning by both MSI and Gigabyte, and the enhanced power delivery circuitry on both of these cards, power consumption is down just a bit.

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