TV, Xbox or PlayStation. How Much Power for a Mobile, Marine, or Off-Grid Electrical System?

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If you are trying to use your TV to watch some movies or fire up the Xbox or Playstation for some gaming powered from your mobile, marine, or off-grid electrical system; you need to know how much power those devices use on a day-to-day basis so you can size your batteries and solar appropriately, and that’s exactly what I’m going to teach you here in lesson #4 of this Electrical System Sizing Chapter of the Mobile, Marine, and off-Grid Electrical Academy.

Now the methods of estimating power usage I’m going to teach you in this video will work for nearly everything you can plug into a standard wall outlet, so if you keep an open mind and think critically, you’ll be able to apply this information to your own specific project.

Calculating TV/Gaming Console Power Consumption – VIDEO

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How much power does a gaming console use?

A TV, Playstation, Xbox, or really anything else that plugs into a standard household wall outlet is rated to operate at a certain number of watts.

My Xbox Series X has a 315W power supply inside of it based on a few Google searches

I could theoretically just multiply the watts of the device x how long I’m playing to get the watt hours used, which would work, and would be an overestimate.

I’m going to show you a more accurate way.

Devices like these aren’t using their full-rated wattage at all times or even very often.  More often than not; they are using a fraction of this rating.

I actually stumbled across this article by Microsoft where they tested the Xbox at various times during gameplay.  For example, the main menu, the pause screen, active rendering, and loading screens all have different power consumptions, anywhere from 70W to 150W.  And these numbers change depending on the game being played and how graphically demanding it is.

So to try to say, “Well, I plan on gaming for 2 hours tonight, with 5% of the time spent on a pause screen, which is 70W and then another 10% in loading screens which is 74W, then the remaining time in active gameplay and cutscenes which is 146W and 95W, respectively… well… those calculations simply aren’t reasonable unless you just like doing math unnecessarily; which if you do… more power to you… but that’s not what we are going to do here.

So, here’s how to actually figure out how much power our playstation, xbox, and TV uses..

You’ll need to get one of these AC power meters for about $15, plug your Xbox, playstation, or TV into it, plug the meter into the wall… fire them up for a couple of hours, and record the results.

Last night I plugged a power strip into the power meter, turned on my TV and Xbox series X, and hunted a 3-star badger for about 2 hours to craft my legends of the east satchel, which after those two hours of play this resulted in .629 kwh of power draw being shown on the meter.

Moving the decimal three places to the right to convert from kilowatt hours to watt-hours gives me a result of 629 Wh being used.

In the context of an off-grid battery bank, if this power were being drawn from a 12V battery bank, 629 watt hours divided by 12V results in 52 amp hours, which is 52% of a 100Ah 12V battery for those two hours of Xbox and TV usage.


Now you should have a good idea of how to calculate the power used by a TV, Xbox, playstation, or most any other type of entertainment system in a mobile, marine, or off-grid electrical system.


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