Console power usage measured

Written by Brett Thomas

June 19, 2006 // 2:21 p.m.

Tags: #console #dxgaming #power-usage #ps2 #xbox-360

When we sit down to plan out our new PCs, discussion invariably turns to how much power is being consumed. Do you need a bigger supply? Is Quad-SLI worth the hit to your electric bill? These questions must be answered before you can ever turn on your PC... but what about your console?

The boys over at DXGaming decided to do a little measurement and find out exactly how much it costs you to leave your favorite console plugged in, with some surprising results. By determining the power drawn over "off" and an average of "playing" times (consoles like the XBox 360 leak a large amount of power when off to fuel wireless remote startup), they calculated the cost of the console when played for two hours daily over a year.

One can easily figure that a console will use more energy as the graphics increase, so the fact that the 360 is on top will not surprise most people. What is more surprising is the cost of over $20.00 USD in electricity annually. A little under $3.00 of that cost is consumed by the machine being off, waiting to get turned back on again. Another surprising fact is that the Sony Playstation 2 leaked the same amount of power, despite having almost no wireless benefits. Overall, the PS2 was the second most expensive console, at a bit over $8 USD to operate per year.

The cheapest of the current consoles tested (which also included the Dreamcast, original XBox and GameCube) was the Playstation 1, weighing in at less than $1.00 added to the energy bill annually.

DXGaming are promising to continue their testing with some of the older consoles soon, as well as the PS3 as soon as it is made available.

Got a thought on the power of your console? Plug in to our forums and let us know!

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