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Analysis [Power Analysis] What happens if you spec a PC like a PS5?

DemonCleaner

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[disclaimer: this is a work in progress post]

Hey fellows,
so some may remember my old Gonzalo-Thread where I simulated the back then rumoured PS5 prototype with the newly release RX 5700XT graphics cards. So back in Summer 2019 we knew nothing official on the PS5 specs. Today we know a whole lot more, rangig from architecture details to clockspeeds.


Last week the RX6700XT released and i snatched one up to do a follow up analysis. Now with an actually comparable RDNA2-based GPU and the now known CPU configuration.



This is the worst overclocker i've ever had (at stock it doesn't even quite archive the ref cards clocks) and it seems Sapphire is selecting ASIC quality for their better range of cards. In this case that's a good thing, because it means that's pretty much the worst case scenario for efficiency.

So before showing first results and explaining the methodology here's a summary of what we are dealing with.





*in case of PS5 that's total observed power draw from the wall which equates to the sum of all components TDP [on the AC side]


Further used PC-Components:

650W Gold PSU
2x8GB Samsung B-die running 3600Mhz
B450 Motherboard
Sata SSD
Sata HDD
additional fans


Methodology:

The CPU gets underclocked to PS5 levels (and undervolted to get realistic working conditions in an console environment - SOC voltages sadly aren't known for PS5 atm afaik)



The GPU is also underclocked and slightly undervolted. To understand why the frequency is set to 2.315 GHz instead of 2.23 you have to understand that there is an offset within the AMD Navi boosting algorithm that prevents it from reaching it's frequency goal. To archieve a 2.2 GHz clockrate i needed to adjust the frequency goal as shown (f_goal might vary depending on load):



Power is monitored at the wall, as well as in software via the driver sensor outputs of the measured rails.

Please note, that because of Infinity Cache the RX6700XT is expected to be a bit more efficient than the PS5. On the other hand my PC has a lot more auxiliary power load than a console (double ram pools, more fans, IO etc.)

Results (sneak peak):

Dirt 5 Benchmark Ultra 4K - Resolution scaling off

GPU frequency


FPS


Total GPU Power (driver)*


*please note: the RX 6700XT is measuring more rails than the first gen Navi 5700XT, hence the total power load output from the driver isn't comparable!!!

Power consumption whole system (at the wall)*:


Hovers around 200W constantly (video follows if demanded) without much fluctuation (+/-5W)

*please note that this figure is not directly comparable to the driver side measuremeant because of power conversion / PSU efficiency losses. 200W at the wall roughly equates to 180W on the 12V DC side of things.


3D Mark FireStrike:


more indepth results following. after more stability testing i changed the base spec slightly (3700x 1.0V, 6700xt 1140mV at f_goal). This time around the well known synthetic benchmark firestrike:

Scores vs System Power:








Frequency:


GPU Power:


Graphics Test 1 is the more power hungry of both tests. I gathered the wall power figure during GT1. that said, GT2 seems to be more representative for a real game workload (the frequency offset seemed to shrink during GT2 which resulted in very slightly higher clocks also)
 
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DemonCleaner

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Awwww sheeeeiiit! A power draw thread with a clamp! I'm tuned in! These are just as good as the audio threads, where people clamp amps at different voltages, etc.

hence we are not dimensioning PSUs and the relative error is the same for measuring the PC and PS5 i think we'll be fine :)
 
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Great read! I wish there were more threads like this.

Did you consider using an NVMe SSD? You could try the Samsung 970 evo, but something that makes use of PCIe 4.0 would be better. I don't think it would make much a difference FPS-wise, but it would be interesting to see how it stacks up to the PS5 for load times. Given the dedicated hardware for decompression, it may be difficult to replicate the results we see on console. Then again, I guess most PC games don't have compressed assets to begin with.

Finally, how much did it cost to build this? I'm curious how much bang-for-buck one can expect for PC vs PS5.
 
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Rickyiez

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Tldr you will get a mid range PC 😂

Just kidding but interesting thread nonetheless. 6700xt is probably the closest you can get.
 

DemonCleaner

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First thought: you have to be shitting me.

On closer Inspection: yeah they are not really trying to do what im doing here.

This thread is first in foremost about analyzing the power characteristics of the used architectures and the price you have to pay to run under low power conditions.

How games performe in comparison can be a bonus... But im not sure i want to go through the hassle of recreating exact settings. Neither have i got any mutliplattform games on both systems. So the asumption needed to be those games maxing out the ps5 power limit.
 
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Zathalus

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There should be a * in the architecture of the PS5, it's not 100% RDNA 2.
That really doesn't matter, there is no IPC increase between RDNA 1 and RDNA 2. The only difference is the increased performance per watt, higher clocks, RT, Mesh Shaders and VRS.

The only two that have not gotten confirmed is Mesh Shaders and VRS, but that would have no impact on the tests performed in this thread.
 
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Md Ray

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Should have used something like a Ryzen 7 4750G for the CPU instead of 3700X to match the amount of L3$ found in PS5's CPU. With 3700X you're at an advantage having 4x the amount of L3$, therefore, using more power.

Also, for the GPU, I'd wait for the RX 6700 non-XT GPU if I were you as it will have the exact same amount of 36 CUs as the PS5's GPU.
 
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DemonCleaner

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Should have used something like a Ryzen 7 4750G for the CPU instead of 3700X to match the amount of L3$ found in PS5's CPU. With 3700X you're at an advantage having 4x the amount of L3$, therefore, using more power.

Also, for the GPU, I'd wait for the RX 6700 non-XT GPU if I were you as it will have the exact same amount of 36 CUs as the PS5's GPU.

yeah sure, will do some retests when the 6700 is available. but going by the 5700 vs. 5700xt which i both tested extensively back then i don't expect much of a difference when it comes to power at the same settings.

on the 4750G: good point, but i don't have one and the GPU part of the APU might have scewed the results also, even when disabled in bios. the 3700x seems to be pretty efficient running at ~1V / 3.5Ghz.
 
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DemonCleaner

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Great read! I wish there were more threads like this.

Did you consider using an NVMe SSD? You could try the Samsung 970 evo, but something that makes use of PCIe 4.0 would be better. I don't think it would make much a difference FPS-wise, but it would be interesting to see how it stacks up to the PS5 for load times. Given the dedicated hardware for decompression, it may be difficult to replicate the results we see on console. Then again, I guess most PC games don't have compressed assets to begin with.
i have a M.2 lying around idle. but it's not the fastest. might check that out later-on, but that's not really the priority of my current tests. problem still would be: i don't have any games on both plattforms that would apply... atm. any suggestions for demos or something cheap?


Finally, how much did it cost to build this? I'm curious how much bang-for-buck one can expect for PC vs PS5.

no idea... much? GPU was 760Euro. everything else was already in use. not a good time to buy a PC.
i spared no expense ...for science


nah, have to give it back in two weeks time.
 
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Kerlurk

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You get versatility over convenience.

I don't think those comparisons are all that valid. Matching clock rate, does not take into account the optimizations that a developer can take for console, because of it's specific architecture that can be targeted. That is, if the developer made the effort. Those efforts tend to be seen in first party games.

Nice PC, but for gaming I would take the PS5 any day over that. PC has diminishing advantages each generation on performance, when consoles have become so powerful.
 
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i have a M.2 lying around idle. but it's not the fastest. might check that out later-on, but that's not really the priority of my current tests. problem still would be: i don't have any games on both plattforms that would apply... atm. any suggestions for demos or something cheap?
I don't know of any free demos right now, but some games you could try are Nioh 1 or 2, Dirt 5, AC: Valhalla, DMC5, etc.

no idea... much? GPU was 760Euro. everything else was already in use. not a good time to buy a PC.
i spared no expense ...for science
Tell me about, man. I've been feeling the itch to upgrade, but the shortage and astronomical prices keep me from pulling the trigger.
 
Mar 23, 2018
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You are very cleaver but a specialized hardware magazine made the math for and they ended at 2000€.
Please stop talking without any facts

Your hardware magazine are a bunch of idiots. that a fact.

For 2000 euro's u can get

16 core top end ryzen 5950x, more then double the performance easily.
6800xt, more then double the performance easily
980 pro 1 terabyte 7gbps ssd
32gb of memory

How is that system comparable towards what the PS5 has?

Look PS5 value is solid and for people that don't want to deal with pc's, its great value. But saying its a 2k PC is just utterly laughable.
 
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Locuza

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There should be a * in the architecture of the PS5, it's not 100% RDNA 2.


That really doesn't matter, there is no IPC increase between RDNA 1 and RDNA 2. The only difference is the increased performance per watt, higher clocks, RT, Mesh Shaders and VRS.

The only two that have not gotten confirmed is Mesh Shaders and VRS, but that would have no impact on the tests performed in this thread.
In detail there are multiple differences and they are all impacting perf/watt a bit but in the grand scheme of things I would agree with Zathalus, it doesn't really matter much and RDNA2 vs. custom RDNA2 is a fair comparison.
It's very interesting that both systems are close together in terms of power draw.
Now it would be fascinating to see how performance compares.

If someone wants to go the extra mile, they will try to get a 4750G APU (Renoir) with 8MiB L3$ and an integrated memory controller, just as on the consoles.
 
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Bitmap Frogs

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i have a M.2 lying around idle. but it's not the fastest. might check that out later-on, but that's not really the priority of my current tests. problem still would be: i don't have any games on both plattforms that would apply... atm. any suggestions for demos or something cheap?




no idea... much? GPU was 760Euro. everything else was already in use. not a good time to buy a PC.
i spared no expense ...for science


nah, have to give it back in two weeks time.

760€???

Isn't the 6700 like the cheaper of the new cards? Just checked, msrp is 470$... GPU market is stupid right now =/
 
Jan 29, 2019
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OK I wen to PC Parts Picker:

- NO Radeon 6700XT is available (but the price of the video card alone would be around 50% more than what I paid for the PS5d)

I'm in Canada, but you can guess the order of the price differences:
PS5 Digital: 500CAD

System (Before CPU and with the cheapest of each parts (30$ case, cheapest 1TB SSD--SATA):
Base Price: $780CAD
GPU Alone: $750CAD

Assuming the ballpark is right and you don't care for any of the benefits of gaming on a PC... Console gaming is the place to be right now for price/perf ratio.
 

DonJuanSchlong

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OK I wen to PC Parts Picker:

- NO Radeon 6700XT is available (but the price of the video card alone would be around 50% more than what I paid for the PS5d)

I'm in Canada, but you can guess the order of the price differences:
PS5 Digital: 500CAD

System (Before CPU and with the cheapest of each parts (30$ case, cheapest 1TB SSD--SATA):
Base Price: $780CAD
GPU Alone: $750CAD

Assuming the ballpark is right and you don't care for any of the benefits of gaming on a PC... Console gaming is the place to be right now for price/perf ratio.
6700xt is 479, which is cheaper than ps5 disc. Not sure where you got the 50% more than a ps5d? Maybe it's much different in Canada?

This is an option for those who prefer higher performance without the compromises of consoles, and with all the benefits.
 
Jan 29, 2019
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6700xt is 479, which is cheaper than ps5 disc. Not sure where you got the 50% more than a ps5d? Maybe it's much different in Canada?
What do you mean by *IS*, this is not the price people pay for it as far as I know. The best I could do on the used market is something like a 1070 for a price slightly above the price of the PS5 DE.

Heck, I could sell my 2060 for about $500CAD--which is the price of the PS5DE here.

This is a unicorn price if this is not what you actually pay for something.
 

DonJuanSchlong

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What do you mean by *IS*, this is not the price people pay for it as far as I know. The best I could do on the used market is something like a 1070 for a price slightly above the price of the PS5 DE.

Heck, I could sell my 2060 for about $500CAD--which is the price of the PS5DE here.

This is a unicorn price if this is not what you actually pay for something.
But why not apply that to ps5 as well...? Ps5 is ranging from 900 to over 1500 on eBay. Interesting way to try and paint a one sided argument though
 
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And several of us got our 3080, 3090, 6800xt, etc, for retail price. I'm not sure why things can only work in favor for ps5, but not PC? Just a little disingenuous is all.
that still defeats the argument, by the time you add RAM or storage (not both, and you better not be too picky) you will have blown the budget.
 

DonJuanSchlong

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that still defeats the argument, by the time you add RAM or storage (not both, and you better not be too picky) you will have blown the budget.
And that defeats the point that the initial cost, to get much better performance, is a little higher. If you already have a pc, upgrading can be much cheaper, especially with cheaper games, no online subscription, etc. If you want a subsidized box, console is the way to go. If you are the kind to get fed up with it's short comings, you can get better performance, and much more on PC.

It's an old argument that has been thrown around, over and over. You can get much better hardware on PC, resell hardware, and upgrade for little to nothing. You can't do that on console. What you got in a ps5 hardware wise in 2020, will have the same exact specs 10 years from now. In a whole console generation, s PC gamer will have better performance, and at a cheaper or similar cost to a console gamer. All things being equal. This will only solidify even more with Sony exclusives coming to PC.

But this is off topic by far. Let's just go with real life experience, instead of hypothetical, made up scenarios.
 

Bryank75

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Unless you're going the whole hog and getting a 3080 or 3090, there's little point in going PC IMO.

It's an all or nothing approach to gaming..... if you want convenience and are not obsessed about having the best performance: go PS5.
If you are obsessed with top performance and a custom experience, you need to spend top dollar, nobody wants a PC with corners cut.

My brother just got his 3080 build with liquid cooling and it is so clean...truly a thing of beauty. He was showing me Star Citizen, very impressive.
 

RevenantX

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You will get a mid range pc with bottlenecks? :)









Jk. Very interesting thread indeed. I will keep an eye out for more.
 

ACESHIGH

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Unless you're going the whole hog and getting a 3080 or 3090, there's little point in going PC IMO.

It's an all or nothing approach to gaming..... if you want convenience and are not obsessed about having the best performance: go PS5.
If you are obsessed with top performance and a custom experience, you need to spend top dollar, nobody wants a PC with corners cut.

My brother just got his 3080 build with liquid cooling and it is so clean...truly a thing of beauty. He was showing me Star Citizen, very impressive.


I don't think that's right (to put it lightly) PC gaming has a lot of use case scenarios. You can build gaming pcs and target the low end for folks oriented to MP games like LoL Dota, CSGO or Fortnite. You can target higher specs for those that want an experience on par with consoles with the added caveats of PC gaming (infinite BC - modding - regional pricing - freedom - emulation) or you can have a bleeding edge build to target higher resolutions, framerates, VR games or multi monitor setups.

And if we are talking convenience within consoles, I think that Microsoft is the clear winner here. Sony has a lot of work to do regarding backwards compatibility and more within their ecosystem. MS is quite a few steps ahead of them in this regard. I won't count Nintendo since they are still in the 80's.
 
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Chris_Rivera

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Honestly, you should be using a gaming laptop when comparing a pc to PS5. Unfortunately, you can’t “build” one, but that’s the true analog.
 

Fredrik

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Unless you're going the whole hog and getting a 3080 or 3090, there's little point in going PC IMO.

It's an all or nothing approach to gaming..... if you want convenience and are not obsessed about having the best performance: go PS5.
If you are obsessed with top performance and a custom experience, you need to spend top dollar, nobody wants a PC with corners cut.

My brother just got his 3080 build with liquid cooling and it is so clean...truly a thing of beauty. He was showing me Star Citizen, very impressive.
No offense but just having access to settings gives PC gaming an advantage. I have no problems completely curbstomp every console version in both graphics settings and framerate.

Like on Outriders I get ~100 fps at Ultra on PC. Consoles can barely hold 60fps at high or mid or whatever.

Main reason, I use my settings menus wisely and don’t try to shoehorn 4K on a box that aren’t powerful enough for 4K.
I’m going with 1080p, Ultra gfx, 60+ fps on everything, with a 4 year old 1080ti. (No RT)
 
Mar 23, 2018
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Unless you're going the whole hog and getting a 3080 or 3090, there's little point in going PC IMO.

It's an all or nothing approach to gaming..... if you want convenience and are not obsessed about having the best performance: go PS5.
If you are obsessed with top performance and a custom experience, you need to spend top dollar, nobody wants a PC with corners cut.

My brother just got his 3080 build with liquid cooling and it is so clean...truly a thing of beauty. He was showing me Star Citizen, very impressive.

Yet only 1% of the PC market exists out of a 3090/3080 tier cards.

Maybe PC gaming is a bit more then just top tier performance and custom experience.
 
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Bo_Hazem

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Amazing effort. But why would anyone build a PC specced as PS5 and pay more? While you're burning more money, better shoot for 6800XT or 6900XT or the nVidia cards.
 
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