Power Consumption and Thermal Performance

The power consumption at the wall was measured with a 4K display being driven through the HDMI port. In the graphs below, we compare the idle and load power of the ASRock DeskMini A300 with other SFF PCs evaluated before. For load power consumption, we ran the AIDA64 System Stability Test with various stress components, as well as a combination of Prime95 and Furmark, and noted the maximum sustained power consumption at the wall.

Idle Power Consumption

The key comparison here is against the DeskMini 310. Thanks to the use of a more power-efficient NVMe SSD, and the A300 PCH that essentially acts as a transparent bridge, the idle power consumption of the DeskMini A300 is a full 2W lower than the DeskMini 310. The load case, however, is completely different. We see the DeskMini A300 sustaining more than 90W at the wall. This number is higher than the load consumption of any other iGPU-only system we are comparing against.

Our thermal stress routine starts with the system at idle, followed by four stages of different system loading profiles using the AIDA64 System Stability Test (each of 30 minutes duration). In the first stage, we stress the CPU, caches and RAM. In the second stage, we add the GPU to the above list. In the third stage, we stress the GPU standalone. In the final stage, we stress all the system components (including the disks). Beyond this, we leave the unit idle in order to determine how quickly the various temperatures in the system can come back to normal idling range. The various clocks, temperatures and power consumption numbers for the system during the above routine are presented in the graphs below.

ASRock DeskMini A300 System Loading with the AIDA64 System Stability Test

At the start of our stress routine, we see most of the cores at the boost clock (3.9 GHz), but, the temperature quickly approaches 78C. The DeskMini A300 BIOS seems to treat that as the indicator to bring down the cores to the base clock of 3.6 GHz. In this initial period, the package power (labeled as reported, but, is more likely to be the power consumption of the x86 cores alone) is around 35W. That drops down to 30W after the cores go back to the base clock. After adding the GPU loading, the cores clocks do go down a bit to around 3.4 GHz (as the GPU ramps up from around 200 MHz to around 1.1 GHz). The reported package power remains constant at 30W. Unlike the reported package power, the at-wall power consumption provides hard irrefutable numbers. In the boost clock state, the wall power goes as high as 80W before settling down to around 72W. When the GPU load is added, the metric stabilizes around 85W. If the GPU alone is loaded, the core clocks jump down to 1.6 GHz, and the GPU starts running at the rated clock (1250 MHz). The at-wall consumption is around 43W. When stressing everything in the system, the added storage workload slightly bumps up the at-wall consumption by a couple of watts, but, other metrics remain similar to the second stage. The temperature of the cores never exceed 80C at any point in the AIDA64 system stability test.

We also run a custom stress test involving Prime95 and Furmark. Starting with Prime95 alone, we add Furmark to the mix after 30 minutes. After another 30 minutes of simultaneous CPU and GPU loading, we terminate the Prime95 process alone and let the GPU run at full throttle. The metrics graphed for the AIDA64 system stability test are also graphed here.

ASRock DeskMini A300 System Loading with Prime95 and Furmark

Interestingly, Prime95 doesn't trigger the boost clocks for the cores. Otherwise, the loading characteristics for the frequencies, temperature, and power are largely the same as what we observe with the AIDA64 system stability test workloads. The only thing of note is that Prime95 and Furmark together make the system consume north of 90W at the wall.

The thermal solution is very effective, ensuring that the temperatures never cross 80C while allowing the APU's CPU cores and GPU to operate at the advertised frequencies / rated power consumption. The 90W peak power consumption also indicates that the Ryzen 5 2400G is operating at its rated TDP of 65W in the DeskMini A300.

HTPC Credentials - Local Media Playback and Video Processing Closing Thoughts
POST A COMMENT

88 Comments

View All Comments

  • Thvash - Friday, April 26, 2019 - link

    For some reason 4K HDR, VP9 Profile 2 is not accelerated at all under Windows, while GPU claims to support it, no such issues under Linux Reply
  • Smell This - Friday, April 26, 2019 - link

    **Microsoft removed the in-built HEVC decoding capabilities of Windows 10 in the 2017 Fall Creators Update, and replaced it with an extension that had to be downloaded from the Microsoft Store. Without the extension, playback is restricted to 1080p non-HDR streams encoded in H.264. In addition to the decoding capabilities, the system also needs to support PlayReady 3.0 DRM.**
    ______________________________________

    Ding!
    Another drive-by DRM borking by WIntel ...
    Reply
  • Ratman6161 - Monday, April 29, 2019 - link

    This doesn't come with an OS, so if you hate Microsoft so much, then don't use Windows. As far as DRM goes, support for it is a necessary evil to avoid being sued. So it's not a "borking by Wintel", its a symptom of our lawsuit happy society + rampant piracy that the owners of intellectual property feel they must defend themselves against. Reply
  • mapesdhs - Thursday, May 2, 2019 - link

    Wow, talk about buying MS' spin. Amazing how people are so happy to throw away their freedoms. In reality the blatant abuse of consumer IP rights is far more important but rarely addressed.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tUAX0gnZ3Nw
    Reply
  • peevee - Thursday, May 2, 2019 - link

    "In reality the blatant abuse of consumer IP rights"

    You have NO rights to OTHER PEOPLE'S Property. Intellectual or not.
    Reply
  • ripbeefbone - Thursday, May 2, 2019 - link

    I miss the 90s when nerds weren't embarassing bootlickers who fawned over corporations. get a soul you shills Reply
  • peevee - Monday, May 6, 2019 - link

    I was the nerd in the 90s (and 80s) and still supported patents and copyrights. While violating some of them. Reply
  • airider - Thursday, May 2, 2019 - link

    Interesting perspective. Intellectual property is not defined anywhere. It is a made up term assigned to copyrighted material and patents. If you live in the U.S. these are protected by Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8 of the Constitution:

    “To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries.”

    The "right" to IP is only guaranteed for a limited time. When this time expires, the "right" no longer exists and it becomes public domain.
    Reply
  • airider - Thursday, May 2, 2019 - link

    In fact, the reason these legal definitions exist is because copyright material and patents are not property, but rather the expression of ideas and thoughts through various forms of media (i.e. verbal, visual, etc).

    Because expressions are not property, a legal construct was created in order for "expressionists" to protect their ability to "make money", since once they expressed themselves, the expression is no longer their own, and the ability to profit was no longer in their control.
    Reply
  • sorten - Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - link

    I was also a nerd in the 80's (and still today) and have never thought it was cool to steal others' creations. If you do that on a large enough scale then there's no incentive left for creative types to create, and what a unhappy world that would be to create. Reply

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now