We need a low-power graphics card option!
It’s a pity that current-generation Nvidia and AMD graphics cards place such a low focus on power economy and performance per watt of energy consumed. Greater emphasis is placed on large benchmark numbers than on relative power usage figures when selling cards. Nvidia’s Small, bus-powered RTX A2000 Pro Card Provides Gaming Performance on a Level with RTX 3050.
However, there are many users who do not utilise powerful power supply or who use OEM systems that are not capable of supporting large graphics cards. There is a market for cards that consume little power. Unfortunately, there are no current-generation GeForce or Radeon graphics cards with a low enough thermal design power (TDP) to eliminate the need for PCIe power hookups.
Even the poor RX 6500 XT is unable to handle it, but there is a card called Ampere that can. It is the RTX A2000, which is designed for workstations. A total power consumption (TDP) of under 70W makes it possible to draw power purely from the PCIe slot. Can it, on the other hand, play? Exactly this issue was posed and answered by youtuber RandomGamingHD, who put the little A2000 through its paces with a series of benchmarks.
Despite the fact that it is designed for workstation use, the A2000 is fully capable of gaming, and it supports ray tracing and deep learning super sampling (DLSS). A blower-style cooler is featured on this low-profile dual-slot card, which will fit into practically any system with no difficulty. The RTX A2000 is equipped with the GA106 GPU, which is the same as that found in the desktop RTX 3050 and RTX 3060 graphics cards.
It has a shader count of 3328, which is much more than the RTX 3050’s shader count of 2560. In order to attain its low power rating, the A200 is clocked at a substantially lower frequency than the 3050, with a 562/1200MHz base/boost clock as opposed to the 3050’s 1552/1777MHz frequencies.
The desktop 3050, on the other hand, has a base TDP of 130W, which is a full 60W more than the A200. The findings reveal that, despite the A2000’s substantial clock disadvantage compared to the desktop RTX 3050, it performs admirably.
RandomGamingHD demonstrates that the A2000 is capable of happily playing games at 1080p and even 1440p if the settings are dialled back. Sure, it isn’t as powerful as the RTX 3090 or RX 6900 XT, but at 70W, it provides exceptional power efficiency, which is the most important lesson to be learned from this experiment.
Unfortunately, because the A2000 is a workstation card, it is prohibitively costly. However, even though it is far too costly to compete with the RTX 3050 and RTX 3060, it serves as an excellent illustration of what is achievable when power efficiency is the primary design aim rather than physical force.
I use a passive GTX 1050 with 75W of power in a secondary PC, and I really like it because it is silent and consumes less power.
I’m confident that I’m not the only one who places a high value on these attributes. A current generation GeForce or Radeon card with a power consumption of less than 75W would be well received. I’m set to go, and I’ve got my wallet open.