View Full Version : Is there any power savings by using nonpwm firmware
12-07-2007, 05:43 AM
Just out of curiosity.Is there any electric bill savings possible in using the nonpwm firmware? I maybe don't exactly understand how the SSR works, but it just seems to me that if you are just sending short pulses to turn on the lights they only are on for that short pulse in contrast to the pwm firmware that holds the pulse. Which in my (maybe completely misunderstood thinking) means that the lights stay on that much longer each pulse the SSR receives. The reason I ask is because I am not using led strings, but I like the indicator lights on the Ren64 board I made. Of course I would be willing to sacrifice them if it means saving money on electric this season.
12-07-2007, 11:17 AM
No there won't be any savings in your power bill (or very small). That selection affects how much power is drawn from your 5V power supply (1A worst-case versus perhaps 200 mA). That in turn has only a relatively small affect on the power drawn by the power supply from the AC mains (perhaps 10 mA versus 2mA). That savings is minute compared with the power drawn by the lights (160 mA or more for a mini-light string, 40 mA or more for an LED string).
The choice between PWM and non-PWM doesn't affect the power drawn by the lights. Even with a short pulse the SSRs turn on and stay on for the rest of the power cycle, just like the PWM situation.
12-07-2007, 11:33 AM
Say I'm providing 5VDC to the Ren64 from the same PC power supply as the computer running vixen. It's obviously powering fans, cpu, video card, sound card, hard drives, etc. Seems pretty inefficient.
Seems like a laptop would consume less power, but would it be significantly less? You'd still need a way to provide 5VDC to the Ren64. Would the combination of a laptop and a PC psu used by itself be much a power saving? How would it compare to what MrPlow did, pulling the power supply from a 5.25 external hard drive enclosure? Thanks.
I think you are saying it is a waste of power to have a desktop machine run your lights because it uses more power than a laptop. That is true, but I'm not sure if I've answered your entire question properly.
12-07-2007, 01:12 PM
Bear in mind that three regular mini-strings at full brightness will draw about 1A, which comes to about 120W of power. It will be less with energy-saving mini-lights or LEDs, more with strings of C7s or C9s. Compare that with the power consumption of the computer and/or Renard64. The PC might be burning 100W (just a guess, it will vary), and the Ren64 about 5W (with PWM firmware, on-board LEDs and 64 channels on at full brightness). During the time that your show is running the power consumption of a PC and/or Ren64 is probably not very significant.
If you are asking about what happens the rest of the time (when the show isn't running) when the Ren64 is powered up, that's another story for another post.
12-07-2007, 01:44 PM
Thanks for the reply Phil. Guess I will have a huge bill as usual.
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