Battery Life

Built on what Intel now calls Intel 7, the new Alder Lake processors do not get a completely new foundry node to reduce power consumption. The idea of having P-Cores and E-Cores though is an interesting one for the laptop space, as in theory the E-Cores could lower power consumption quite a bit. However, that discussion will need to likely wait for the thin and light notebooks to arrive with U-Series and P-Series processors as a H-Series device with a massive RTX 3080L Ti GPU, DDR5-4800, multiple PCIe 4.0 SSDs, and a 360 Hz display are not going to be a showcase for power efficiency of a processor.

As always, our battery life tests have the display set to 200 nits brightness and the system set in its most efficient mode.

Web Battery

Battery Life 2016 - Web

Our first test shows that the Raider GE76, despite a 99.9 Wh battery, performs very poorly if used as a portable computer. Thankfully it is not really intended to be used this way, as it is big and heavy to carry around, but the regression over the outgoing Tiger Lake model is clear. What is also very clear is how much better AMD is able to power-gate its large discrete GPU compared to NVIDIA, as the AMD gaming system dominates in the battery life tests.

Battery Life 2016 - Web - Normalized

The normalized results remove the battery size from the equation and drops the new Raider GE76 to the bottom of the results. There are several variables, so it is difficult to pinpoint exactly what is causing the power consumption regression, but likely DDR5-4800 is a part of it.

PCMark Modern Office Battery

PCMark 10 Modern Office Battery

The PCMark test will run a series of workloads in a ten-minute window, and if a device finishes the work quicker, it is able to idle for a larger percentage of the ten minutes, which probably assists the new Alder Lake system here as it is overall a more performant device compared to the outgoing Tiger Lake laptop.

Movie Playback

Battery Life Movie Playback

The battery life regression is even more pronounced in the battery life playback time. Clearly there is a significant amount of passive power draw in this system.

Battery Life Tesseract

Looking at the Tesseract score, which divide the movie playback time by the length of the movie The Avengers shows that you would run out of juice halfway through your third viewing.

Battery Life Summary

In a word the battery life could be summed up as "unimpressive". The Raider GE76 is not an ideal test bed to determine CPU efficiency under load since the underlying power draw is significant. To see how Alder Lake compares we will have to wait for more power efficient platforms to get more meaningful results.

Storage Performance

Unlike with the desktop counterpart for Alder Lake, the laptop variants are limited to “just” PCIe 4.0 storage. The Raider GE76 offers support for two of them, and the system shipped with two Samsung PM9A1 PCIe 4.0 drives at 1 TB each.

PCMark 10 System Drive Benchmark Average Access Time

PCMark 10 System Drive Benchmark Bandwidth

PCMark 10 System Drive Benchmark Score

The drive performance is class leading, with the highest results we have ever achieved in the PCMark Full System Drive test.

Gaming Performance Initial Thoughts
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  • Lbibass - Tuesday, January 25, 2022 - link

    It seems that there may be something wrong with your benchmarking process. Linus Tech Tips was getting significantly improved battery life over the previous gen GE76 Raider in watching YouTube videos, nearly a 40% improvement.

    For the Alder Lake Raider in your review to get significantly less battery life than the previous gen shows signs that there is something going on with your specific laptop that I wouldn’t be so quick to blame on background power consumption.
    Reply
  • doungmli - Tuesday, January 25, 2022 - link

    you have to see the configuration tested, here the autonomy problem is surely linked to the 17" 360hz screen. I don't even understand their comparison with the asus g513 which has a 15" screen ans only 144hz Reply
  • Brett Howse - Tuesday, January 25, 2022 - link

    Our results were very close to what Intel had sent us as to what they were getting so I think they are fine. Reply
  • TheinsanegamerN - Friday, January 28, 2022 - link

    But they are not in the same ball park with what other reviewers are getting. It suggests either there was a difference in the manner the laptop was tested or there was something off about this specific model you got. Reply
  • deil - Thursday, February 10, 2022 - link

    or that drivers still suck, it did not go to E-cores as planned, hence the difference. Reply
  • Silma - Tuesday, January 25, 2022 - link

    The laws of physics are the laws of physics.
    On battery life and performance per watt, Intel won't catch up with AMD until it goes 7 nm, and then again, it won't catch up with Apple until it goes 5 nm, assuming the change is immediate.
    In reality Intel will probably needs to go 4 or 3 nm to catch up.
    Reply
  • drothgery - Tuesday, January 25, 2022 - link

    Intel 7 and TSMC N7 are similar-density processes (though the latter is more power efficient). That until was calling Intel 7 "10nm Enhanced Superfin" until recently and people who should know better always called TSMC N7 "7nm" doesn't actually make them that different. Neither process actually has any 7nm features, or even any 10nm features; the last time marketing names for semiconductor processes actually reflected any feature size on real chips they were still using microns, not nanometers. Reply
  • Otritus - Friday, January 28, 2022 - link

    Planar transistors had size match the smallest dimension of the transistor. So 28nm was in fact 28nm. The move to FinFET dramatically decreased the smallest dimension (14/16 nm would be called 8nm if they didn’t change how transistors were named). Since there is not standardized naming for FinFET and GAAFET transistors you have the arbitrary naming that all companies now use creating confusion around how performant and dense a process is. Reply
  • Duwelon - Tuesday, January 25, 2022 - link

    Wonder why they don't offer a 144hz VA panel. Reply
  • Calin - Wednesday, January 26, 2022 - link

    That is a $3000 laptop, they can't use "second-best" technologies in it.
    (and by the way, I have a "second-best" MVA 32 inch display, and the contrast is absolutely incredible. Colors are good, viewing angles are good, but that contrast <3
    Reply

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