Power Usage

There’s a lot of performance on tap in the Xbox One X, which never comes with no strings attached. Like the Xbox One S, the APU inside is built on TSMC’s 16 nm FinFET process, which should help keep power usage under control. In addition, the Xbox One X is outfitted with a power supply that Microsoft equates to an 80 Plus Gold unit, which means it should be 90% efficient at 50% load with a 115 V source, and there shouldn’t be too much extra power wasted from the PSU converting AC voltage.

There’s several scenarios we tested for power usage:

Off – Xbox One X is powered off in Energy Savings mode, which means standby mode is disabled.

Standby – Xbox One X is powered off in Instant-On mode, which allows background updating and voice activation enabled (if supported).

Idle – Ethernet connected, no disc in the drive, system idling at dashboard.

Load (UHD BD Playback) – Ethernet connected, UHD Blu-Ray disc in the drive playing Planet Earth II, compared to The Hobbit on Blu-Ray on the original Xbox One.

Load (GoW4) – Ethernet connected, no disc in the drive, playing Gears of War 4 in UHD/HDR.

Load (The Wolf Among Us) – Ethernet connected, no disc in the drive, playing The Wolf Among Us in FHD SDR.

We’ve been able to compare against the original Xbox One, although not the S model as we didn’t have one on hand. The Wolf Among Us was chosen as an older game which caps at 1080p and SDR, and Gears of War 4 shows the power draw at full 4K HDR rendering. The comparison against the original for this game will of course be for the 1080p version though, since that’s the max it supports.

Power Consumption Comparions
Total System Power Energy-Saving Instant-On Idle Load (UHD BD) Load (GoW4) Load (The Wolf Among Us)
Xbox One < 2W 14.2W 53W 80W 107W 102W
Xbox One X < 1W 10W 56W 64W 172W 101W

As with the original Xbox One, when Instant On is disabled, the console is practically fully off. There’s a small amount of draw, but overall, not very much. Most people that use the console are going to likely want it in Instant On mode though, so games and the console can update while the system is off, as well as to provide a much quicker startup time, and games can remain loaded in RAM. In Standby mode, power draw is reasonable at 10 W, which is lower than the original console when it first launched. It’s still a fair bit of power, but when you factor in that it needs to keep 12 GB of GDDR5 memory powered up (among other things), it is not unreasonable to expect this amount of power draw.

Idling at the dashboard draws around 55 W, and to add to that, most non-gaming tasks don’t add very much to this total, if any. If you’re using your Xbox to passthrough HDMI from a cable box, it will take this same power draw. Maybe this would be an impossible pipe dream, but it would be nice to see the Xbox One also pass through HDMI when it is in Standby mode.

Playing back a UHD Blu-Ray (standard Blu-Ray on the original Xbox One) was a tiny bit higher than idle, which is good to see. Some of the draw would be the disc drive itself, but a lot of the playback would be offloaded to fixed function hardware in the media block so it’s not surprising to see it so close to idle.

Clearly gaming on older Xbox One games is not much of a chore for the Xbox One X, since the power draw is only about 50 W over idle. But, when gaming with an Xbox One X Enhanced title, such as Gears of War 4, the power draw jumps significantly to 172 W as the peak observed. This is quite a jump over the original console, and makes the cooling system, which is barely audible even under these loads, even more impressive. Compared to a high-end gaming PC though, the power draw is quite a bit less.

Enjoying Media User Interface
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  • Manch - Friday, November 03, 2017 - link

    explain? Reply
  • StevoLincolnite - Friday, November 03, 2017 - link

    12 memory chips with each memory chip having it's own 32bit memory controller for a 384bit memory bus.
    There are only 32 ROPS.

    Which means there is an additional memory crossbar just like the Radeon 7970... Which also means that there could be scenario's where real-world bandwidth ends up as 218GB/s rather than the full 326GB/s.
    Reply
  • StevoLincolnite - Friday, November 03, 2017 - link

    Ian elaborated upon that in a prior article. I just thought it might have been expanded upon here. Reply
  • Manch - Friday, November 03, 2017 - link

    Ah OK, thanks for explaining.

    What would be a typical scenario that would cause this? Or is there a link or google phrase that will pull up the relevant info.

    Appreciate it.
    Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Friday, November 03, 2017 - link

    Unfortunately I don't have any new information to add on the subject at this time. But I wouldn't draw too many comparisons to Tahiti; the situation is made a lot more complex by the fact that a CPU is being fed as well (which is also why even the original XB1 had the equivalent of a memory crossbar). Reply
  • StevoLincolnite - Saturday, November 04, 2017 - link

    Fair call. Microsoft stated it was able to achieve 285GB/s of bandwidth out of 326GB/s.
    But they didn't really elaborate beyond that.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/news/xbox-scorpio-engi...
    Reply
  • Manch - Saturday, November 04, 2017 - link

    Interesting, and thanks for the link. I've been reading up on the 7970(what I can find) and now Ill have to add this to the list. Reply
  • alistair.brogan - Friday, November 03, 2017 - link

    Not a single game made expressly for this console. Kind of weird right? I'd rather the n64 situation with 2 launch games!!!

    Would have loved to see a 1080p/60fps game made only for the X. Guess I'm waiting for a PS5 now.
    Reply
  • Manch - Friday, November 03, 2017 - link

    That comment makes no sense. If you're not trolling, utilize the power of the internet and read up. Reply
  • TEAMSWITCHER - Friday, November 03, 2017 - link

    Games ... yes. Great Games ... Not so much. The Nintendo switch has two new perennial favorite titles (Zelda Breath of the Wild + Super Mario Odyssey) each with a Metacritic Score of 97!! Where are these critically acclaimed titles on the XBox and PS4? Even the PC seems to suffer from a lack of ground breaking titles. Non-Nintendo gaming needs to bring the ground breaking titles ... otherwise what's the point? Reply

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