For testing power consumption, we took our test system and plugged it into a Kill-A-Watt power meter. For idle numbers, we allowed the system to idle on the desktop for 15 minutes and took the reading. For load numbers we ran three games at 1920×1080 and averaged the peak results seen on the power meter.
Power Consumption Results: The ASUS Radeon R9 290X reference card used around 107 Watts at idle and hit a peak of 464 Watts when gaming. The ASUS Radeon R9 290X DirectCU II and Sapphire Radeon R9 290X Tri-X are both overclocked with custom GPU coolers and used slightly more power at both idle and load. The Sapphire 290X Tri-X ran ay 111 Watts idle and 472 Watts load and the ASUS 290X DirectCU II ran at 117 Watts idle and 480 Watts load. These power numbers are high in comparison with most video cards we have looked at, but this is in-line with what we expected as this is a high-end enthusiast card!