Use them wisely and save!

A growing number of Québec families are buying game consoles for entertainment. However, because these consoles are energy hogs—especially the new-generation systems—their impact on electricity consumption is significant.

More powerful, more power-hungry!

Newer game consoles, such as Sony’s PS4 and Microsoft’s Xbox One, are much more powerful than previous models and therefore consume a lot more energy (up to three times more according to a report from the Natural Resources Defense Council [NRDC]).

They include entertainment and gaming features that require more power than ever before: data processing, graphic support, vocal activation, automatic start-up, network connectivity and more.

And that’s not all!

  • Using a console to watch television or movies consumes 35% to 40% more electricity than using a television or home theatre system.
  • The PS4 also consumes more energy than its predecessors in standby mode because its USB ports remain active, even if no peripherals are plugged into them.
  • As for the Xbox One, it uses two to three times more energy than previous models, mainly due to its Kinect peripheral. The voice and motion activation options mean the console stays on 24/7. Always ready to spring into action, it is constantly drawing power… even at night or when no one is home!

Consumption of new-generation game consoles according to usage

  Game Play Power
(watts)
Video Streaming Power
(watts)
Connected Standby Power
(watts)
Annual Energy Consumption
(kWh/y)
Wii U 34 29 0,4 37
PS4 137 89 8,5 181
Xbox One 112 74 15,7 233

Annual consumption according to console generation

Tips for being energy wise

Regardless of which console you own, you can reduce its electricity consumption.

  • Turn it off completely when you’re not using it.
    • Did you know that 50% of the electricity consumed by a console is used when it’s on standby? You can save a lot just by enabling your console’s option to automatically turn itself off after an hour of inactivity.
    • Plug the console into a configurable outlet that will automatically cut power to it at specific times.
    • Or, use a power bar equipped with a timer.
  • Consider turning off your console’s connectivity options if you don’t use them often.
    • Being constantly connected to the Internet to receive updates accounts for over half of your console’s consumption.
  • Do not use the Xbox One’s TV mode.
    • As shown by a report from the NRDC, using an Xbox One to watch TV consumes as much electricity as a new 42-inch TV screen.

See also