The Power Efficiency From A Radeon HD 4890 Through The RX 480 & R9 Fury
This past weekend I published a number of year-end 2016 AMD Linux benchmarks on a wide-range of AMD GPUs going back many generations while using the Linux 4.9 kernel on Ubuntu along with the Mesa 13.1-development code for having the newest open-source Gallium3D drivers. Those results were very interesting and go check them out now if you haven't done so already. For this article is a sub-set of those tests carried out again while monitoring the AC power consumption, GPU temperature, and CPU utilization while also automatically calculating the performance-per-Watt.
This EOY2016 article provides an interesting look at this wide range of AMD GPUs going back to the Radeon HD 4890 (RV770) all the way through modern GPUs like the RX 480 and R9 Fury while particularly looking at the power efficiency. The cards used for this second round of testing included the Radeon HD 4890, HD 5830, HD 6870, HD 6950, HD 7750, HD 7950, R7 260X, R9 270X, R9 285, R7 370, RX 460, RX 480, and R9 Fury. Similar end-of-year NVIDIA Linux results will be published in the days ahead.
The AC system power consumption monitoring during testing was measured using a WattsUp Pro power meter communicating with the system via USB, which in turn is automatically read via the Phoronix Test Suite for archiving that data as well as being able to automatically calculate the performance-per-Watt metrics. The GPU temperature and CPU utilization were also monitored; for PTS users, simply via PERFORMANCE_PER_WATT=1 and MONITOR=sys.power,cpu.usage,gpu.temp environment variables for enabling said functionality.
With all those basics out of the way and other information from the earlier article, let's jump right to this power data.