High-power consumption computers banned in six states.

DeeJayK

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...Maybe they just want these folks (miners/reckless global warming deniers) to become someone else's problem?
I don't think that's quite it. Rather these laws are an attempt to force manufacturers to consider the efficiency of the devices they create.

Yes, this would be more effective at the national or international level, but decision makers at those levels aren't working on this stuff. California is such a huge market that they can effectively force these constraints to be applied nationally, if not globally.

I would expect that the next generation of Alienware machines from Dell will comply with these regulations so that they'll be available in the states (not just CA, but several others) from which they are now excluded.

- K
 
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RichardC

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I don't think that's quite it. Rather these laws are am attempt to force manufacturers to consider the efficiency of the devices they create.

Yes, this would be more effective at the national or international level, but decision makers at those levels aren't working on this stuff. California is such a huge market that they can effectively force these constraints to be applied nationally, if not globally.

I would expect that the next generation of Alienware machines from Dell will comply with these regulations so that they'll be available in the states (not just CA, but several others) in which they are now excluded.

- K

Okay. Understood.

Perhaps it would be more effective to ban 'standby' mode in new electrical devices? I am old enough to remember when it was necessary to walk 6 feet to the TV and switch it on. No-one died as far as I know and everyone was thinner.
 

Armoured

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I'm not viewing this as politics. Global warming is an apolitical issue.
Unfortunately anything that impacts the distribution of wealth, income, and power is politics.
It would make more sense if the state decided they were tackling illegal cryptocurrency mining. I read somewhere last week of an operation which used 4x in stolen electricity than was actually made mining.
The list of things that 'make more sense to do' (i.e. when people come up with their candidates for "...but the REAL problem is...") is extremely long. Possibly infinite.

Ignoring things that can be done (like this) at little cost and massive net benefit seems dumb to me.
How banning the sale of legal hardware (on most of the planet) could defeat a local criminal process is a little bewildering though. Maybe they just want these folks (miners/reckless global warming deniers) to become someone else's problem?
These policies wouldn't make the hardware for mining illegal. They are only about machines at idle.
 

DeeJayK

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That's California in jeopardy of removal from the bucket list then. I eat pig.
I realize this statement was likely made at least partially in jest, but CA has some amazingly wonderful places. You'd really be doing yourself a disservice if you avoided it simply because you couldn't get a Baconator.

- K

P.S. Despite the fear-mongering headline of that article I shared, I'm certain that bacon will remain on the menu in CA. Just perhaps at a higher price or smaller quantity, neither of which is necessarily a bad thing when one considers the obesity epidemic.
 
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Darmok N Jalad

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Some statistics taken with a Kill-A-Watt meter from a 2010 Mac Pro with 2x X5760 Xeons (12C/24T total), plugged into a Dell 22" IPS display:

Plugged in, but off, with monitor in standby: 1W
Plugged in, off, monitor in standby, 60W LED on: 7W
On, in sleep mode, with monitor in standby: 5-6W
Monitor and Mac Pro on, typing this message: 150-160W
12C/24T loaded to 100%: 322W

Now, how much time do I spend in each of these states? By far, probably 90% of the time, the system is off or in sleep mode. Using the above, even an ancient, sleeping 2010 Mac Pro workstation consumes less than an LED bulb in the on state. Almost all of the remaining time would be on in a relatively idle state, so bouncing around the 160W mark. I'd say it's definitely way less than 1% of the year that I would even come close to that 322W max-state.

Now, I'm not a gamer anymore, but considering the state of gaming these days, I bet many gaming rigs are active every evening for hours on end, consuming way more than 322W. A premium GPU will gladly hit 300W, and top-end CPUs will climb well past 100W (an active PS4 Pro consumes around 150W, IIRC). Mining rigs with several GPUs running 24/7? That will consume more energy than my Mac Pro under my usage pattern for many many years. So what is actually harder on the environment, buying shiny new energy-efficient machines, which bore a significant environmental cost to produce and ship to your store or front door, or simply using something that already exists? More and more renewable energy is going into service every year.

We can really run down the rabbit hole here, because in an ideal world, our battery powered computers can go the entire day without needing to be plugged in, and allow for charging overnight. Problem is, all those batteries need to come from somewhere too, and getting the material is usually also very costly.

Keep in mind that I don't practice this entirely either--I fall victim to shiny new things as much as the next guy.

No argument that mining is hurting us all. It's sapped the supply chain of premium GPUs, which has driven prices and production though the roof. A used RX 570 is over $200, when I can recall buying a brand new one for $110 2 years ago.
 

Armoured

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Using the above, even an ancient, sleeping 2010 Mac Pro workstation consumes less than an LED bulb in the on state. Almost all of the remaining time would be on in a relatively idle state, so bouncing around the 160W mark. I'd say it's definitely way less than 1% of the year that I would even come close to that 322W max-state.
This was precisely the point of the regulations (as I understand them) - it was perfectly possible and relatively cheap to design equipment that used very little power in standby/idle back in 2010.
That will consume more energy than my Mac Pro under my usage pattern for many many years. So what is actually harder on the environment, buying shiny new energy-efficient machines, which bore a significant environmental cost to produce and ship to your store or front door, or simply using something that already exists?
This seems to be a false dichotomy. There is nothing in the regs or laws that requires you to retire Olde Faithefull. They only apply to new machines.

Keep on keeping on.
 

Mountain_Man_79

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Chris, I ask as a longtime Minnesotan, do you see many close comparisons with our fair state? Or would you rather not comment?
John
Hey John,
I’m probably too new to the state to make an educated comment, however if my experience at the DVS trying to get a license is any indication, this state seems to be just about as asinine. Otherwise, it’s lovely, and I’m happy to be here!
 

Darmok N Jalad

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This seems to be a false dichotomy. There is nothing in the regs or laws that requires you to retire Olde Faithefull. They only apply to new machines.

Keep on keeping on.
I wasn't referring to regulations. Rather, folks often argue that old equipment is not as efficient as new and will use it as justification to upgrade. I've seen it specifically with the classic Mac Pro. Pre-2009, they had a point. The RDIMM models were horrible at idle, but from 2009 and on, idle and sleep power efficiency was pretty darn good. It's more meant to add to the discussion about that power efficiency has been around for some time now, which makes me wonder what is wrong with that Dell configuration. I can't see how a modern setup would fail idle and standby testing, as this has really only gotten better since 2010--it's the load consumption that is actually getting worse as more innovative cooling is being used on CPUs and GPUs.

To some degree, old is less efficient, at high-load especially. A modern 8C/16T CPU is probably faster than this 12C/24T machine from 2010 at 100%, and likely uses less energy to complete the same task.
 
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The Spanish Government recently exhorted Spaniards to eat less meat to fight climate change, so be forewarned. Your government will soon be taxing meat.
 

Armoured

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I wasn't referring to regulations. Rather, folks often argue that old equipment is not as efficient as new and will use it as justification to upgrade. I've seen it specifically with the classic Mac Pro. Pre-2009, they had a point.
I was referring to regulations or attempting to keep it on the topic of the regulations, to underline the point that "people say stupid stuff that is wrong" (as in your case, apparently, suggesting you should upgrade to save power) is very different- and really, a different discussion - from the arguments against this regulation.
It's more meant to add to the discussion about that power efficiency has been around for some time now, which makes me wonder what is wrong with that Dell configuration. I can't see how a modern setup would fail idle and standby testing,
And yet, it has. My understanding some of the bigger offenders are cheap devices and power supplies for various devices - because cheap. Don't know what the deal with the Dell is, though - presumably as a gaming device they designed it to make noizzze and impress with its massive cooling towers or something.
 

ac12

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Idle/sleep makes more sense.

I never presume that the politicians will pass bills that make sense.
Too many special interests, and "I don't like you" thinking.
 

ac12

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Okay. Understood.

Perhaps it would be more effective to ban 'standby' mode in new electrical devices? I am old enough to remember when it was necessary to walk 6 feet to the TV and switch it on. No-one died as far as I know and everyone was thinner.

Yeah, they have been talking about unplugging "vampire" devices. All those devices that drain a little bit of power when "off."

If I can put them on a master switch, like one power bar to power up all the computer gear (computer, monitor, printer, etc.) not a problem.
In fact that is what we did back in the 80s. But that was simply for convenience, one master switch rather than turning each device on/off.​

The problem with some devices is, if you really turn the power off, they lose their setup/config, as they have no battery.
I remember once powering up my cable box. It took about 5 minutes to boot, and to get the cable channel listing took another 20+ minutes. It NEVER got turned off again.

The next item to get attacked will be the wall warts and power supplies with no power switch, which are just left plugged in.
The problem that I have with wall warts and power bars, is the size and layout of the wall wart. On a 6 outlet power strip, sometimes you can only put TWO of them, because of how wide they are, and how they block other outlets. Because of that, I rather have devices, like battery chargers, with a cord, so that I CAN put more than two of them on a power bar, if I want to.​
 

Armoured

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Yeah, they have been talking about unplugging "vampire" devices. All those devices that drain a little bit of power when "off."
For the most part, discussion of how much devices with external power bricks/warts etc consume when off/plugged in is WAY out of date.
https://megaelectronics.com/the-difference-between-efficiency-level-vi-and-v/
There have been standards governing these things for quite some time, with regs in the EU and USA fairly comparable and up-to-date (although I'm not clear whether mandatory in USA or the energy star voluntary).
At any rate, concern about leaving devices plugged in when on standby is much, much less of an issue than it used to be. I'm not saying it's never an issue, but for gear from quality companies, much, much less of an issue. Most of us don't need to worry about unplugging equipment all the time - although sure, powering off the power strip for those random bits of kit when leaving for a month is not a bad idea. And a lot of this driven by regulation.
Desktop computers in USA have been a bit of an outlier (although most probably meet the CA standards anyway).

(And yes, I'm aware there are some things like cable boxes that are notorious, and lots of other exceptions. But the nice thing now is that they tend to be exceptions and fairly easy to identify, at least for electronics - warmth being one of the simplest ways to find out).

Oh - and the EU has a fairly nice regulation that is forcing companies to use USB-standard chargers and connections for lots of low-voltage battery devices. I have a concrete example, two small powered screwdrivers - one just came with a microUSB cable, the other has the annoying wallwart that takes up room on the powerstrip and easily lost with non-standard connection.
 

ac12

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Unfortunately I've not seen the "energy star" logo enough, so it may be mandatory for some products but voluntary for others.
Big kitchen appliances mention it, but not smaller home stuff. I need to pay more attention to it when I go shopping.
 

Armoured

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Unfortunately I've not seen the "energy star" logo enough, so it may be mandatory for some products but voluntary for others.
Big kitchen appliances mention it, but not smaller home stuff. I need to pay more attention to it when I go shopping.
I warn, I'm not sure how it works in USA for these things - as the California case here, there are different requirements sometimes in states. It may not be energy star that applies but some other.
 

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