37 Haswell motherboard group test: 28x Z87, 6x H87 and 3x B85

ASRock, ASUS, Gigabyte, Intel and MSI duke it out.


Energy consumption: 3DMark Vantage (average)

The energy consumption of the boards is much more interesting than the performance benchmarks. We measured it in three different ways. First we measured the average usage during a complete run of 3DMark Vantage. Here both the CPU and GPU are under load. Then we measured the maximum consumption during the CPU benchmark Cinebench 11.5. Lastly we measured the idle usage, and took the average over a five-minute period.

In 3DMark Vantage a number of ASRock boards are the most energy-efficient, which is in part due to a lack of aggressive turbo and the slower (memory) performance. The ASUS Mini ITX board was also very efficient, and the Gigabyte G1.Sniper 5 the least efficient. It's striking that MSI, known for its energy-efficient boards, scores poorly with its deluxe boards. The switch from DrMOS to digitally-controlled VRMs of a different type are likely the culprit here. Generally speaking, the more deluxe the board, the more power it uses.

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