The Real Power Consumption of 73 Graphics Cards

PCI-Express bus extender
PCI-Express bus extender

The french team of has done a big test by measuring the real power consumption of 73 graphics cards.

The power consumption of a graphics card is the sum of two powers:

  • the PCI-Express X16 power: up to 75W
  • PCI-Express power supply connectors:
    • up to 75W for the 6-pin version
    • up to 150W for the 8-pin version

So the max theoretical power consumption of a card can’t exceed 75+75+150 = 300W.

To measure the power consumption of PCI-Express power supply connectors, just use a voltmeter and and amperometer. To measure the power consumption of the PCI-Express X16 bus, a PCI-Express bus extender is required like this one (see picture above).

Two 3D apps have been use to push the cards to the max: FurMark and 3DMark06 (Pixel shader test).

You can compare the results of these tests with the graphics card TDP database.

FurMark results in 1920×1200 (Stability test + Xtreme burning mode):

Power consumption of 73 graphics cards with FurMark
PCI-Express bus extender

3DMark06 results in 1920×1200

Power consumption of 73 graphics cards with 3DMark06

In the dual-GPU cards, the most demanding is the Radeon HD 4870 X2 with more than 320W under 3DMark06 and around 310W under FurMark. The GeForce GTX 295 reaches its maximal power consumption under FurMark with 295W while the Radeon HD 5970 exceeds 300W under FurMark.

In the single GPU cards, the GeForce GTX 275 is one of the greedy…

The complete test is available HERE in french.