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Pi 3 Wifi Power consumption

Mon Aug 01, 2016 10:56 pm

I have some pi's, but still a beginner. I am currently building a standalone computer based on a Raspberry Pi 2B and a 10.1" monitor.

Anyway, i am currently using a wifi dongle ( TP-LINK wn721n ) which works OK but i suspect is drawing too much current.
Also, as the battery is more or less limited (2.2Ah 12v gel battery) , i was thinking of optimizing power.

So my question is, how much will Raspberry Pi 3 with its embedded wifi consume (in watts) compared to Raspberry Pi 2B with said TP-LINK wifi dongle?
Will the PI3 be better (i.e.: more efficient) than 2B under those conditions?

I would make the calculations but empirical knowledge is always welcomed.
Also, i tried looking for this but most comparissons are made with usb dongle, example:

All of the benchmarks below were carried out with just a USB keyboard and mouse connected with power supplied from the official Raspberry Pi Power Supply, with the exception of the WiFi dongle test in which the USB WiFi dongle was also connected. The Pis were naked, i.e. not in a Pibow, except for the onboard WiFi in Pibow test.

Thanks in advance!

I found this chart, looks ok although won't specify USB brand or type. Also HDMI off and in my case i'm using it: ... onsumption

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Re: Pi 3 Wifi Power consumption

Tue Aug 02, 2016 3:18 am

Power consumption of a computer will vary a lot depending on what the computer is doing. At idle, my Pi3 draws roughly 330mA when connected to my wireless network and an HDMI monitor. Oh, and that's with a Logitech Unifying wireless keyboard/mouse dongle as well.

So at idle, 5.25v x 0.330A = 1.73 watts

Running updates can double that while things are installing. Background Linux tasks will occasionally (and briefly) push it into the 400-500 milliamp range while idle.

Plugging in a Lexar 16GB flash drive will bump idle current up to 390mA.
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