Stress Testing and Power Consumption
Stress Test — Putting It All Together

Another test we added to the motherboard suite this time around was the stress test.  In this we take all the on-board components and make them all work together just to see if they play nicely. 

In our case here this meant running WMP10 on an HD video, having PCMark05 run some hard drive tests, running HDTach on the external USB hard drive, playing the large WAV file and running the network bandwidth test, all at the same time.  The tests were looped for an hour and we listened for sound ‘jumps’ or video stutters or anything similar.

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The Abit motherboard the passed our stability tests without an issue running Ethernet, USB, graphics and hard drive tests all the same time without slowdown and without crashing.

Power Consumption

In many cases, looking at power consumption of motherboards and chipsets can seem a little over dramatic.  After all, when your GPU eats up a couple hundred watts on its own, whats a few more for a chipset?  Regardless, we felt the need to use our power meter to test for power consumption at the wall. 

Idle power was taken at the Windows desktop while load results were taken from a dual-threaded CineBench run.

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These results are pretty interesting as they show the NVIDIA-based AN8 32X using the same amount of power as the Asus A8R32-MVP. We had previously thought that the the power consumption of the ATI Xpress 3200 chipset to be much, much lower than that of the NVIDIA NF4 SLI, but from these results we can see that it’s not the case.

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