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What does TDP mean, Nvidia?

Posted on 11th Nov 2010 at 16:09 by Clive Webster with 53 comments

Clive Webster
TDP is typically defined as Thermal Design Power, the amount of power (heat) that a cooler must dissipate in order to keep a silicon chip within its operating temperatures. While Intel and AMD disagree as to what test to run to measure this, both agree that it’s a measurement of waste heat output from a chip.

Reading through the Nvidia GeForce GTX 580 1.5GB review guide threw up a new definition, however: ‘TDP is a measure of maximum power draw over time in real world applications.’ Even if Nvidia’s definition is the correct one, I have to wonder why it wanted to use the term in this way at all.

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