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 a 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.

Asus Striker Extreme nForce 680i Intel Motherboard Review - Motherboards  1

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

Power Consumption

In many cases, looking at the 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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We knew this from the get go: the NVIDIA 680i chipset uses much more power than most other Intel platform chipsets.  NVIDIA’s MCPs and SPPs are notoriously hot and power hungry, but for users that are just out for performance and features, it probably won’t matter much.

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