Tag Archive | "ulv"

Power Efficiency – Intel Core ULV CPU vs Intel Core Mobile CPU

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Early in January I put forward an article which highlighted the differences between the ‘ultra low voltage’ CPUs you get in Ultrabooks and the ‘low voltage’ CPUs you get in many laptops. I gave some comparison figures for two devices  in different usage scenarios by measuring ‘system’ power drain and it was only in the high-end tests where we saw the ULV processor being significantly more efficient. In this article I continue the testing and compare the LV and ULV cores directly. The results are blow.

Part 1 – Ultrabook ULV vs Notebook Mobile CPUs

Measuring ‘system’ drain on two different systems isn’t the most scientific of tests so a discussion broke out in the comments about how we could measure a true difference in efficiency between ULV and LV processors and whether it could be possible to run low-voltage processors at slower clockrates and get the same efficiency as a ULV processor.

The theory says ‘No.’ If you run a CPU at the same frequency but with a higher voltage, the power usage goes up.

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Ultrabook ULV vs Notebook Mobile CPUs

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P1010501A lot of people have been asking the very sensible question – Why Ultrabook when you can get a 1.5KG notebook that delivers the same battery life and runs at a higher clock rate?

Update: A follow-up test, focussing on CPU power only, has now been published.

In nearly all comparison cases, the ‘lower clocked’ Ultrabook is based on an Ultra Low Voltage (ULV) 1.3-1.8Ghz Core i3, i5 or i7 CPU and is being compared to a laptop running a standard mobile equivalent of 2.2-2.5Ghz. With Intel Turbo Boost some of the clock rates can go higher but it’s not important for the comparison.

What’s the difference?

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