Power Consumption

One of the key topics in power consumption recently has been whether Intel’s approach to power, or to how it represents its Thermal Design Power (TDP) values, is valid or not. Intel’s take on TDP is that it should represent the sustained power of the processor, which unfortunately does not take into account any of the turbo modes available to the users (or disclose how long those turbo modes should be available for). Part of this is not only confusing, but motherboard manufacturers rarely use Intel specifications for these limits anyway, as you can read in our article covering the practice here.

With the Core i9-9980XE, the typical representation of power is used: stick to the turbo tables unless the system is thermally compromised. In this case the 165W TDP value is a guide, not a limit or a suggestion – it relies on the quality of the silicon and the ability of the motherboard manufacturer to be stable, performance focused, and competitive.

Comparing the Core i9-9980XE to the Core i9-7980XE, the new processor has a higher base frequency by 400 MHz, a higher single core turbo frequency by 100 MHz, and a higher all-core turbo, but uses a newer 14++ manufacturing process and soldered thermal interface material. The peak power consumption numbers are as follows:

Power (Package), Full Load

Looking at the full chip values, the peak power consumption we observed for the Core i9-9980XE is 192W.  This is 9-10W higher than our Core i9-7980XE sample.

If we remove the ‘idle’ power numbers away to see the core-only power, then the Core i9-9980XE uses around 152W just for the cores, which should be around 8.5W per core. The 32-core Threadripper 2990WX by contrast uses around 6W per core.

If we look at the efficiency of each processor, with our power numbers taken during a POV-Ray run:

The Core i9-7980XE gets a performance per watt of 43.3 POV-Ray points per watt - the new Core i9-9980XE scores a little less at 42.7, as for the extra 5% of power, we get a 3.6% increase in performance. For competition, the only HEDT processors coming close are the other Intel HEDT parts, or the 2990WX at the top right of the diagram. Obviously, this is benchmark specific, but an interesting comparison nonetheless.

Gaming: F1 2018 Core i9-9980XE Conclusion: A Generational Upgrade


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  • Shaky156 - Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - link

    I have to agree 110%, gaming benchmarks are more gpu/ipc related more than a multicore cpu benchmark.
    Somehow seems anandtech could be biased
  • eva02langley - Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - link

    Totally agree, we have come to a time that benchmarks are not even accurately evaluating the product anymore. The big question is how can we depict an accurate picture? Especially if the reviewer is not choosing the right ones properly for real comparison.

    Well, seeing disparity from Phoronix is raising major concern to me.
  • Stasinek - Wednesday, November 21, 2018 - link

    It's indeed suprise to me that those new 24,32C AMD processors 2920,2970 are just worst in any therms than their 16C equivalents. In terms of perf/money perf/power just laughable.
    Linux changes a lot but who uses Linux and for what purpose?
    I bet developers but what makes me really angry is that nobody even tries to use KVM, Xen, VirtualBox, VMware, VirtualBox as benchmarking tool for purpose of testing usage as small company server. In mine company lot of Remote Desktop sessions are connected to same server.
    Someone would think - who needs good CPU? But it's only because dont used to solve real life problems and those problems are like importing big databases from obsolete programs, filtering, fixing and exporting to new ERP systems. This consumes lot of time to have fast CPU is crucial. Most of companies i know uses RDP server for that purpose and typical cheep portable laptops given to workers. To have AMD or Intel HDET tested in such purposes would be nice to see. Cause anyone can potencially have 32C anyone could benefit.. but rather than this kind test i used to see gaming.. gaming od HDET?! WTF
  • pandemonium - Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - link

    All of these "my work doesn't have any desktop users" comments crack me up. Congratulations. Your work is not the entire world of computing in a professional space, much less prosumer space. Get over yourselves. Reply
  • halcyon - Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - link

    @Ian Cutress
    Your tests and review text are always a pleasure to read, thank you for the professionalism.

    Questions related to the test suite (I know, everybody always wants something):

    1. You are missing an Excel Spreadsheet calculation (Finance still uses a lot of these and they can peg all cores near 100% and be incredibly CPU dependent). Would be nice to see some for example an Excel Monte Carlo simulation kn the suite (local data)

    2. Alternatively an R (language) based test for heavy statistical computation. Finding a one that is representative of real world workloads and strikes a balance between single core IPC and many core parallelisation might take some work. But this is one area where laptops just can't muster it and CUDA/OpenCL acceleration isn't often available at all.

    3. For Web / JS framework it is nice to see SpeedoMeter and WebXPRT3, but for some reason V8 Web Tooling Bench is not there (https://v8.github.io/web-tooling-benchmark/ ). The old Kraken/JetStream/Octane are nice for reference, but not very representative of real world anymore for some time now (hence why they are abandoned).

    Again thank you for this monumental work, the amount of tests is already superb!

    For graphing results it would be so helpful to get a comparative price/perf graphed results browser (pick your baseline CPU, pick workloads, cpus on graph as a func of price/perf). This would enable auick viewinf of the efficient frontier in terms of price/perf for each workload and see the base CPU as an anchor.

    Yeah, yeah, I know.... Just throwing this in here 😀
  • KAlmquist - Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - link

    These benchmarks also show the 16 core TR 2950X beating the 18 core i9-9980XE in some cases. Reply
  • KAlmquist - Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - link

    My previous comment was a reply to nexuspie's observation that, "These benchmarks show that the 9980's 18 cores often BEAT the 2990wx's 32 cores." Reply
  • Stasinek - Wednesday, November 21, 2018 - link

    Witch should lead to conlcusion AMD Threadripper 2 is just bad offer except 2950.
    It's the one and only AMD CPU worh mentioning - witch means TR4 16C is dead end.
    AMD offers overpriced CPUs on that platform that is for sure.
    Overpriced because half of cores are choking being absolute useless.
    If 32C and 4 channels is too much cores/channel imagine RYEN 3 16C on dual channel..
    It will be big dissapointment for some people i bet.
    Regardless of pricing Intel 9980 is just great.
  • Stasinek - Wednesday, November 21, 2018 - link

    Is that what you wanted to say? Reply
  • crotach - Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - link

    I have to say I'm a big fan of HEDT platforms, I built my last workstation in 2011 and it still serves me well 7 years later. But looking at this and the X299 offering I really don't see why anyone would bother. Reply

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