News JVTech I measured the consumption of a computer off, here’s how much you save by unplugging
Published on 02/04/2023 at 15:15
You remember to turn off your computer when you stop using it, congratulations! But do you unplug the plug every time? I measured the electricity consumption of my PC when it is off, and here is the result.
Electricity consumption, an increasingly obvious concern
Do you remember when your parents used to tell you the famous phrase: “It’s not Versailles here!” when you left the lights on all the time? If you have taken these reflexes over the years, your skills turn out to be of great use in these times of energy crisis.
In effect, energy prices have soared since 2022, and the government regularly recommends that we adopt economical habits so as not to overload the French electricity network, which is currently in difficulty over certain time slots. It is therefore a matter of small daily gestures to try to save a few euros and remove a little salt from the rising bill.
It is therefore strongly advised to turn off electronic devices as regularly as possible. It’s a habit to get into if you don’t have it, but it’s sure to save you money. But What about appliances plugged into the mains? Even if they are turned off, the simple fact that they are plugged in causes them to consume electricity. A small amount, yes, but still.
So I decided to measure the consumption of my PC as well as two screens very different to evaluate the electrical consumption of appliances that we use every day, but that we never unplug.
Experience: how much does a PC and screen that is off but still plugged in consume?
SO ? In a context where electricity is expensive and you get into the habit of turning off all your devices, how much do you spend with a PC and a screen that remain connected? To perform this analysis, I equipped myself with a wattmeter, also commonly called a consometer. This is a very simple measuring device that plugs into an electrical outlet, and into which you plug the device you want to measure.
To make the measurements relevant and understandable, we are going to focus on the consumption in Watt per hour (Wh) given by the wattmeter, a unit measuring the power of an energy flow. Here are the three devices that are measured:PC fixe Intel NUC with Intel Core i9-9980HK processor, RTX 2070 graphics, 26GB RAMA Samsung PC screen S24C450 (24 inches, 1080p), a fairly standard modelAn Acer PC screen XB280HK (28 inch, 4K) a top model
so here’s the results of our measurements:
alightextinctPC fixe33.6 Wh at rest; 200.6W in game2.6WhSamsung 24 inch 1080p screen24,1 Wh0,9 WhAcer 28 inch 4K monitor45,3 Wh14,6 Wh
The numbers you see represent the consumption in watt (W) for each device for 1 hour. The most surprising is the difference in consumption between the two screens. Samsung’s standard model reaches 0.9 Wh against 14.6 Wh for the Acer 4K display. This is 5 times more than the Intel NUC desktop PC, which only goes up to 2.6 W.
This is a very important point to note: some devices like this 4K screen are certainly more energy-intensive, but retain astronomical consumption when switched off and plugged in. It may be worth getting a power meter to check if some of your devices are reaching figures as outliers as this one.
How much does a PC + screen setup cost
Suppose you have a gaming PC similar to the one presented here, and you opt for the 24-inch Samsung PC screen, much cheaper and more energy efficient than the Acer 4K display. By adding the consumption in KWh of the two devices, we obtain:
(2.6 x 24) + (0.9 x 24) = 84 Wh, daily consumption84 x 365 = 30660 W, annual consumption30660 / 1000 = 30.66 kWh per year
Currently in France in 2023, the price per kWh is €0.1841 during peak hours and €0.1470 during off-peak periods. By taking the average of the two values, we obtain €0.1656 per kWh.
Thus, the total cost of a setup Fixed PC + 24 inch screen and of :30.66 x 0.1656 = €5.08 per year.
So. In a year, leaving a fixed PC and a screen constantly connected will cost you around €5, even if you take the time to turn them off after each use. It is it’s up to you to see if taking the time to unplug them is worth it. $5 a year doesn’t sound like a lot, but if we add up all the other devices that remain connected in our homes, in addition to all those that remain on such as the Internet box, it can be really interesting financially to equip yourself with multiple sockets with switch, to turn everything off at once and not spend for nothing.
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