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Do Idle Computer Speakers Draw Much Energy?
Old 06-16-2015, 12:17 PM   #1
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Do Idle Computer Speakers Draw Much Energy?

I'm they type that doesn't like to leave stuff on.

So, before bedtime I turn off the computer speakers for my TV and PC.

But, am I just wasting my time since there is so little power draw of an idle speaker? If so, maybe what I need is some good black tape to cover the LED bulbs?
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Old 06-16-2015, 12:36 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by easysurfer View Post
I'm they type that doesn't like to leave stuff on.

So, before bedtime I turn off the computer speakers for my TV and PC.

But, am I just wasting my time since there is so little power draw of an idle speaker? If so, maybe what I need is some good black tape to cover the LED bulbs?
Newer electronic devices with the energy star label, and the newer "cube tap" transformers for misc. electronic devices are pretty good at power reduction in "sleep mode", the older stuff is surprisingly wasteful. Affectionately called " Power Vampires". On 24/7. Just put your hand and on the device. if it is idle, and you can feel warmth, it's wasting electricity. period.

A large scale , nationwide effort to eliminate these losses would be a far better investment for $ invested than solar power.

The electric utility industry actually benefits from this waste, as it is a share of the "Base Load"

Just my semi-informed opinion. All advice guaranteed, or double your money back.

PS, if you go the black tape route, get Scotch #33 , it's a far superior electric tape, although costs about triple of cheap tape
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Old 06-16-2015, 12:54 PM   #3
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It's a pretty mixed bag. For about $20 you can pick up a Kill-A-Watt power meter which will tell you exactly how much power something uses. It's pretty interesting. (For instance my receiver really needs to be turned off.)
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Old 06-16-2015, 01:13 PM   #4
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I think what you want to know is speakers not making sound, do they draw power. Generally no. Most amplifiers draw more power as louder signals are sent throughout, so no music equals low power. There are amps that draw constant power, but those are pro quality normally.


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Old 06-16-2015, 01:14 PM   #5
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I've got a Kill-a-watt meter - and the more I use it, the more I tend to leave things on. Most of these modern electronics are very good at idle/sleep.

I've got a small amp hooked up to the kitchen TV, the idle current barely registered. So something less than a watt, I think turning it on/off is more likely to damage something or wear out the switch, and replacing it would waste more energy than leaving it running.

But a meter is the way to know for sure - and give it time, some of these things take a few minutes to go into sleep mode.

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Old 06-16-2015, 03:20 PM   #6
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Okay. I do have a Kill-a-watt EZ meter and took a measurement. The computer speaker connected to my TV is as follows:

Off : 2.7 watts

On idle : 3.8 watts

On with TV program on : 3.8 to 3.9 watts

Didn't test speaker for computer as that is connected to a USB port, not plugged in.
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Old 06-16-2015, 03:55 PM   #7
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Have a pair of dell computer speakers. About 3 watts on, and 2 watts when off.
Left on all day, approximately 26 kWh per year.
$4.00 per year?

Turned off the power strip, as I rarely use them. For my desktop systems I have two sets of speakers with bass speaker. For those I have a remote power strip set up so that I can turn off power to both at end of day.
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Old 06-16-2015, 03:58 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by easysurfer View Post
Okay. I do have a Kill-a-watt EZ meter and took a measurement. The computer speaker connected to my TV is as follows:

Off : 2.7 watts

On idle : 3.8 watts

On with TV program on : 3.8 to 3.9 watts

Didn't test speaker for computer as that is connected to a USB port, not plugged in.
2.7 w ain't much , but that's 75% power of the device completely wasted when off. Got any black tape handy ?
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Old 06-16-2015, 04:02 PM   #9
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2.7 w ain't much , but that's 75% power of the device completely wasted when off. Got any black tape handy ?
Got black tape, but I'll probably still turn the darn thing off and on and skip the tape. Old habits die hard.

But since the wattage off vs on is only 1 watt I may compromise and leave th speaker on all day and just turn off at night.

I turned the speaker off now...my frame of mind is a work in progress .
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Old 06-16-2015, 04:06 PM   #10
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We have a switch system on our speakers. DH put it in. He said he got the speaker system at Best Buy, and it included the switch. It has a little on/off button and volume control and sits on out computer desk near the keyboard. The switch is about the size of a quarter of my palm. Speakers are usually off, but super easy to turn on. Our computer does back up overnight so we don't power down. To save power, we shut down the monitor when not in use (pull the plug from the back...very low tech!)

Easy ways to save money, even a few $$, and help our progeny are a good thing.


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Old 06-16-2015, 04:26 PM   #11
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We have a switch system on our speakers. DH put it in. He said he got the speaker system at Best Buy, and it included the switch. It has a little on/off button and volume control and sits on out computer desk near the keyboard. The switch is about the size of a quarter of my palm. Speakers are usually off, but super easy to turn on. Our computer does back up overnight so we don't power down. To save power, we shut down the monitor when not in use (pull the plug from the back...very low tech!)

Easy ways to save money, even a few $$, and help our progeny are a good thing.
One set of speakers in my office is a logitech model, with similar switch on the desk. It actually pulls 6 watts, on and off. Just measured to make sure I was remembering things correctly.

So in a year, more than 50 kWh. Not a lot of money, but in my situation I want to make sure I am not adding to the heat generation in my office. Nice in the winter when everything is on!
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Old 06-16-2015, 04:56 PM   #12
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Got black tape, but ...................................
I turned the speaker off now...my frame of mind is a work in progress .
You are hereby awarded one " Saving the Planet " point.
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