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Minimum, Average, Peak Power

Does Intel's Dual-Core Atom Improve Efficiency?

Minimum, Average, Peak Power during PCMark05

Idle power is very much the same: it’s 28 W for the Atom 230 or 29 W for the other solutions. We have to emphasize again that it’s impressive to see the Core 2 machine reach the same idle power as the self-declared low-power Atom.

The average power requirement during PCMark05 is of course much higher on the Core 2 Duo E7200 (43.8 W), and somewhat higher on the other systems (31.3 to 33.5 W). We found the lowest power requirements on the single core Atom 230, followed by the dual core Atom 330. HyperThreading has a bit of an impact on average power.

Minimum, Average, Peak Power during SYSmark 2004 SE

Again, minimum power was 28 W in the case of the Atom 230 single core and 29 W for all the other machines.

The average power requirement for SYSmark 2004 SE was a bit different than for PCMark05, though. While the Atom 230 stays at only 30 W, the Atom 330 dual core required an average of 32 W without HyperThreading, and 33 W with this feature enabled. The Core 2 Duo was only one watt behind at 34 W, which is impressive.

Things change when looking at peak power: the Core 2 machine required up to 54 W here, whereas the Atoms stayed well below 40 W. However, keep in mind that the Core 2 system can provide up to several times the performance if needed, and it will stay at peak power for a much shorter time than any Atom system, which will take longer for each and every workload.

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  • 0 Hide
    waxdart , 5 February 2009 16:06
    I'll get one as soon as the full HD playback with on board graphics is done. When i want to heat the room and use some power I guess I could drop in a top of the range graphics card and get me some cpu limitied game play.
    I don't need a slow crap kiosk in my room right now. Could be handy as a little p2p downloader 24x7. But your government think p2p, even when its not copyrighted stuff so thats out.
  • 1 Hide
    ukctstrider , 5 February 2009 17:47
    I don't see why everyone is banging on about Core2Duo, particularly in the UK. The cheapest E7000 series is over £40 more expensive than a Brisbane 5600 which has the same TDP...
    I agree that Core2Duo are more powerful, but they simply aren't worth the ridiculous price increase over an AMD platform.
  • 1 Hide
    Reynod , 5 February 2009 18:32
    1. Shows no appreciable increase in performance for a second core.
    2. Has a chipset unworthy of a noob and incapable of HD.
    3. Is not cheap.

    I imagine an aweful lot of Netbook owners will be upset and these things will be on E-Bay by the bucketload soon enough.

    Might be ok for a firewall box ... or a home alarm system ... or something light industrial.

    Not for Windows XP or anything more complex.

    Sad really.

    Intel are trying to tell us this is what we need ... sounds a bit like Prescott to me ??

    Can't believe the reviewer is pumping this dog up as a positive ... must be scared (or getting paid) by Intel eh?
  • 0 Hide
    lilo , 6 February 2009 00:43
    Not for Windows XP or anything more complex.

    Even a single core Atom is almost as fast as anything around when XP came out, so XP runs very well on one to be sure.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , 6 February 2009 01:57
    Tom's quality is still dipping...what's with the typos and the incorrect information in the CPU comparison table? 508k of L2 in a C2D? Hyperthreading too? Also the dividing the benchmark scores by watt-hours - those benchmark already include the notion of time, so combining that score with watt-hours is just bad maths!
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , 6 February 2009 02:40
    The only atom processors I see available in oz are the 270. Where do they fit into the atom family? And I believe there is a 280 coming later this year.
    I don't think your reviews are anywhere near as thorough as they used to be.
  • 0 Hide
    aron311 , 6 February 2009 04:35
    Whats with the test setup mentioning an E8500 but the graphs in the review are all E7200??
  • 1 Hide
    aron311 , 6 February 2009 04:36
    Plus whats the actual power draw of both out of interest idle and max? TDP i think are the same...
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , 6 February 2009 05:28
    Well after 10 years of visiting this website it's just been stripped from my favourites. I've been double dipping reviews with anandtech for the past 5 or so years but I've had enough. This site is just all junk now. See ya
  • 0 Hide
    psiboy , 6 February 2009 17:46
    The real conclusion should have been "Why bother with Atom at all for $80 more get a more efficient platform that will outlast it by years!"
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , 6 February 2009 19:36
    Is it possible to get to know if Atom 330 is any better at Gigabit
    ethernet transfers? I remember when Tom's hardware tested single
    core Atom 230 that it could only do about 28MB/s - what's the speed
    that Atom 330 can achieve? Thank you.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , 9 February 2009 17:49
    Don't forgot Nvidia Ion boards will be coming soon, then we'll hopefully (cross fingers) have HD on an Atom system.
  • 0 Hide
    nubie , 23 February 2009 23:15
    Oh for F*cks sake Toms.

    Did you even exercise your brains to find the ITX Core2 Conroe-L motherboard? D201GLY2 is its name.

    UNDERCLOCK the Core2 you freaking morons. A real test would be clock for clock.

    Buy an e1400 or a e5200 NOT the 7200 if you are comparing to the low power ATOM. The cost difference is only $20, NOT $80 (G31 $50, e1400 $50).

    Did you even try lowering the voltage on the e7200?

    One might think that Intel dictated this review to you, or you have some inane reason for recommending Atom, when it clearly is only 10 watts less than a CPU clocked nearly double with 3x the Cache. Use a little less voltage on the Core2 and you will find the exact same power usage with much improved performance.

    This isn't to negate the huge benefit Atom will see when it goes integrated (on package, not on-die) and loses the Gunning transistors.

    Intel is trying to keep Atom a novelty, they refuse to allow it a PCIe slot, or dual channel RAM.

    Meanwhile VIA has an ITX 2.0 initiative where the motherboards will have x16 PCIe slots onboard.