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Proposed ENERGY STAR Specifications for Computer Monitors Craig W. Hershberg ENERGY STAR Office Equipment and Consumer Electronics Agenda Computer monitor specification Objectives History Specification highlights Industry feedback Next steps

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Proposed ENERGY STAR Specifications for Computer Monitors

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proposed energy star specifications for computer monitors

Proposed ENERGY STAR Specifications for Computer Monitors

Craig W. Hershberg

ENERGY STAR Office Equipment and Consumer Electronics


Computer monitor specification

  • Objectives
  • History
  • Specification highlights
  • Industry feedback
  • Next steps
  • Questions from EU - EPA agreement
  • Your comments / questions
  • Our questions for you
agenda cont d
Agenda (cont’d)
  • Do you need specifics ?
    • Sleep, Off , On, Non-energy aspects
  • Test method
  • The time is right - LCDs
agenda cont d4
Agenda (cont’d)

Logistics and other issues

  • How to collaborate when revising the specifications
  • Subsequent meetings
  • Summary of meeting, including action items and schedule for follow-up
  • Preliminary plans for other Office Equipment Products
    • procedure for collaboration
  • Provide understanding and disclosure of draft monitor specification
  • Provide detailed answers to questions
  • Receive constructive feedback from you
  • Develop consensus on direction identified today
  • Agree on next steps
the history
The history:
  • What monitor specs. exist in Europe now ?
    • GEEA
    • TCO
  • Reviewed independent monitor research from DisplaySearch, IDC, Europeans, and others
  • Met with monitor manufacturers at COMDEX, CES, DisplaySearch, and one-on-one (HANS-PAUL)
  • Analyzed self-reported data from manufacturers in STAR database
  • Independently measured monitor power use
  • Compared data with LBNL, ADL studies
  • Made recommendations to EPA. EPA weighed them with others and created draft specification.

ON: “active”, “full power”

SLEEP: After x minutes of inactivity, monitor goes to lower power usage mode. “low power”

OFF: “Standby”

Remember: ON, SLEEP, AND OFF

current e nergy s tar specification
Current ENERGY STAR Specification
  • Sets minimum wattage levels in low-power or “sleep” mode.
    • First Sleep Mode:  15 watts
    • Second or “Deep Sleep” Mode  8 watts
why revise the current specification
Why Revise the Current Specification?
  • Virtually all monitors meet current ENERGY STAR specification.
  • Large percentage of monitors are not sleep enabled (i.e., we are not getting the energy savings we could be).
  • Recent NRDC research shows energy use in “on” mode is 80 –90% of total kWh/yr.
  • For “on” and “off” modes, wide range of performance between similar-sized models.
  • Broad interest in limiting standby power use.
goals for revised specification
Goals for Revised Specification
  • Incorporate all 3 operating modes:
    • On (active)
    • Sleep (inactive)
    • Off (standby)
  • Performance-based specification.
  • One specification for all monitors, not one for CRTs, one for LCDs, etc.
  • Equal or better performance compared to non-ENERGY STAR labeled models.
the core requirements
The Core Requirements
  • Maximum allowable power consumption levels for each mode: On, Sleep, Off
  • Consensus test method for measuring active power usage.
  • Minimum consumer acceptance criteria (brightness, warranty, etc.)
  • Product and package labeling.
why active power
Why Active Power?
  • Feasible without negatively affecting product performance; in fact, some manufacturers are already meeting the proposed specifications
  • Limited additional energy savings potential in sleep and off modes; ; 90% of savings with proposed spec is from “active”
  • Not dependent on enabling rates
  • Allows a variety of technologies (e.g., CRT and LCD) to qualify
  • Highlight a new technology in the marketplace
  • Additional benefits:
    • Space
    • Heat
    • Power consumption
    • Useful life
    • Installation
    • Disposal
on mode active power use
On Mode: Active Power Use
  • Sets maximum allowable active power (W)

Power as a function of mega pixels:

W = 30 + 20X

Example: monitor has resolution of:

1280 x 1024 = 1,310,720 or 1.31 mega pixels

W = 30 + 20 (1.31) = 56 W

on mode cont
On Mode (cont.)
  • Technology neutral, agnostic to monitor type (LCD or CRT), size (15”, 17”, etc.).
  • If monitor yields more information, allow a little more power consumption.
sleep mode
Sleep Mode
  • Just one sleep mode level.
  • Maximum allowable power: 4 W
  • If multiple sleep modes, all must meet 4W requirement.
sleep mode advisory language
Sleep Mode Advisory Language
  • For consideration in updated ENERGY STAR computer specification:

Maximum default time: 15 minutes

Maximum recovery time: 5 seconds

  • Goal – increase likelihood that users actually use and are not annoyed by energy management features.
off mode
Off Mode
  • Synonymous with standby.
  • Power consumed when device is plugged in, but switched off:  2 W.
  • Working to harmonize with US Executive Order for Standby Power Consumption (1 watt executive order)
non energy reqts
Non-energy Reqts.
  • Must be: bright enough, easy-to-read, reliable.
  • Brightness: minimum luminance of 100 nits (candelas/m2).
  • Contrast: minimum contrast ratio of 200:1.
  • Defective Pixels:  5 sub-pixel faults per million sub-pixels.
  • Warranty: at least 2 years.
  • User Interface: UI Standard recommended
labeling requirements
Labeling Requirements

ENERGY STAR logo must be displayed on:

  • top/front of product,
  • product package,
  • product literature.
key industry feedback regarding draft specification
Key Industry Feedback Regarding Draft Specification
  • Industry expressed few concerns on having the new specification include requirements for all three operating modes: on, sleep, and off.
  • With few exceptions, industry agreed to a pixel per watt approach for on mode
  • EPA and industry agreed to define a common test method for measuring on mode power consumption. Manufacturers to test and submit data once test method is finalized
key industry feedback regarding draft specification cont d
Key Industry Feedback Regarding Draft Specification (cont’d)
  • Should ENERGY STAR set one specification (one line) that covers all CRT and LCD monitors, or should the specification differentiate between CRTs and LCDs (2 lines) ?
  • Specification too stringent for CRTs, particularly for the desktop publishing environment (e.g., large screen sizes)
  • Wake-up time for monitor. Industry wants more guidance on how to measure/define wake-up time
key industry feedback regarding draft specification cont d27
Key Industry Feedback Regarding Draft Specification (cont’d)
  • Industry supports a single sleep mode specification, as opposed to the current sleep and deep sleep design
  • 4-watt sleep mode specification is agreeable
  • off mode of 2 watts may be difficult for LCDs
key industry feedback regarding draft specification cont d28
Key Industry Feedback Regarding Draft Specification (cont’d)
  • Several manufacturers questioned non-energy requirements
  • Specific concerns include:
    • Brightness level will be harder to meet for larger CRT monitors.
    • EPA should reference ISO standards for contrast ratio; CRTs and LCDs are measured differently.
    • Pixel faults only applies to LCD monitors.
    • Warranties could be a serious challenge with retailers, and may not work in international markets.
key next steps for epa and industry
Key Next Steps for EPA and Industry
  • Establish test procedure
  • Industry to submit input to EPA on non-energy parameters
  • Manufacturers to test monitors according to new test procedure and submit data to EPA.
  • EPA to analyze new data and revise specifications, as necessary.
changes to specification based on industry response
Changes to specification based on Industry Response
  • May need to allow more CRTs to qualify
  • large screen CRTs issue
  • Scale down non-energy attributes
  • Monitor wake-up time ?
  • Test procedure

Questions for You...

  • Were their questions or comments on the first draft?
    • Test procedure, non-energy attributes, etc....
  • Like to submit next draft to you first provided we receive comments in timely fashion (3 weeks)
  • Can you provide data from European manufacturers?
sleep mode35
Sleep Mode

Current ENERGY STAR Specification:

  • First Sleep:  15 W; Second Sleep:  8W

Proposed Specification:

  • Just one level :  4 W; simplifies spec
  • Under the new spec, sleep mode power is about 10% of active mode power
  • Roughly two-thirds of existing models can meet the proposed sleep requirement.
sleep mode questions
Sleep Mode Questions

Verify consensus:

  • Only 1 tier (no deep sleep)?
  • Maximum power level : 4 W?
  • Advisory levels set at right levels?

-Default time till sleep: < 15 minutes

-Recovery time: < 5 seconds

off mode37
Off Mode
  • Current specification: no standby power limit.
  • Current measured levels: some as high as 8-9 W, several at 4-5 W.
  • Proposed specification:  2 W.
  • Lots of models currently meet the 2W limit.
off mode questions
“Off” Mode Questions
  • Verify Consensus:
    • Is 2W the right level?
    • Beneficial to have same level set in Executive Order (not simply 1W)?
    • Suggestions on how to harmonize with European Union. (TCO)

What Does The Term “Energy Efficient Monitor” Mean?

  • Efficiency = Useful Output or Service Provided / Total Energy Input
  • Useful output or service could be diagonal inches of screen size, square inches of screen size, or total pixels displayed
  • Monitor not displaying information (providing useful output) in sleep or standby modes, so minimize power use at those times to achieve high overall efficiency
  • Can account for all energy use in all three modes separately or with a duty cycle
  • ENERGY STAR seeks to recognize top 25% efficiency
the advantages of pixels watt
The Advantages of Pixels/Watt
  • Pixels/watt approach has a number of key advantages:
  • More technology neutral – avoids difference between viewable screen size and total
  • Screen area (square inches) unknown to consumers
  • Credits CRTs for their present resolution advantage, yet allows for very high resolution options like IBM’s new 9.1 million pixel LCD
  • Emphasizes display quality over physical size
  • Avoids difficulty of trying to estimate a representative “duty cycle” for all monitors
  • Simple, like lumens/watt (lighting) or CFM/watt (fans). Can also be characterized as watts/megapixel
effect of resolution and monitor type on active power consumption for monitors 17 and less
Effect of Resolution and Monitor Type on Active Power Consumption for Monitors 17” and Less

Effect of Resolution and Monitor Type on Active Power Consumption for Monitors Greater than 17”

applying active power spec to standard resolutions



Total Pixels

Maximum Power Use

640 x 480



37 watts

800 x 600



40 watts

1024 x 768



46 watts

1280 x 1024



57 watts

1600 x 1200



69 watts

1800 x 1440


82 watts

2048 x 1536


93 watts

Applying Active Power Spec to Standard Resolutions
need for consistent measurement
Need for Consistent Measurement
  • STAR database contains self-reported data from manufacturers
  • Not all monitors measured under identical conditions in active or “on” mode
  • Depending on user settings and image displayed, CRT power variations can be +/- 30%. LCD variations can be +/- 50%.
  • ENERGY STAR has helped develop common test methods to the ventilation and lighting industries – may be able to bring standardization to monitor measurements as well.
why include non energy attributes
Why Include Non-Energy Attributes?
  • Goal is to ensure a level playing field – maintain or enhance quality while saving energy
  • What aspects of product quality or performance could be compromised if a manufacturer looked for a “quick fix” to meet the new ENERGY STAR spec?
  • ENERGY STAR and the utilities that support it want to ensure that customers will have a satisfying experience with labeled products.
  • Reliability -- Saving energy is the product of power savings and time (kwh = w*h). An energy efficient product that fails early won’t save much energy.
key non energy spec provisions
Key Non-Energy Spec Provisions
  • Brightness – Minimum of 100 nits at default brightness and contrast settings
    • LCDs typically 150 to 250 nits
    • CRTs typically 80 to 120 nits
  • Contrast ratio – Minimum of 200:1 (can adjust settings to achieve this level)
    • LCDs typically 200:1 to 400:1
    • CRTs typically >400:1
  • Without these specs, very dim or low contrast screens could more easily meet ENERGY STAR but may not satisfy users
other key attributes
Other Key Attributes
  • Refresh rate – Minimum of 85 Hz for CRTs and 60 Hz for LCDs – attempt to preserve ergonomic quality
  • Pixel faults – No more than 5 sub-pixel faults per million sub-pixels (Class II, ISO 13406-2) – seek to minimize quality differences between CRT & LCD
  • Warranty – At least 2 years - 3 years common from many major manufacturers, but spec recognizes retailer preference for selling extended warranties
other possible non energy attributes
Other Possible Non-Energy Attributes
  • Viewing angle – How far from the horizontal and vertical axes of the screen can it still be clearly seen?
  • Wake from sleep time – How long before information is legible on screen after wakeup? Is there a consensus way to measure that?
  • Pixel density – pixels per inch (PPI)
  • Resolution/Addressability Ratio (RAR) – VESA Section 6.6 – ability of a screen to resolve individual lines or pixels
  • Others?
elements of a standard test procedure
Elements of a Standard Test Procedure
  • Identical on-screen image (alternating black and white lines 1 pixel in height?) filling full viewable area of screen
  • Default brightness and contrast settings (balance between simplicity and risk of manipulation)
  • Highest VESA supported resolution with a refresh rate of at least 85 Hz for CRTs, native resolution and 60 Hz refresh rate for LCDs – is other timing language needed?
other test procedure elements
Other Test Procedure Elements
  • Reference VESA specifications for power measurement – true RMS power at 3 combinations of voltage and frequency, averaged across at least 5 test samples
    • 100 VAC, 50 Hz; 117 VAC, 60 Hz; 230 VAC, 50 Hz
  • Leave off or disconnect any included peripheral features – TV tuner, microphone, speakers, USB hubs, etc.
  • Others?
future specification revisions
Future Specification Revisions
  • Other Office Equipment
      • Laptops (initiate research March 2002)
      • Scanners, printers, copiers, MFDs, fax machines
        • (Scanner USB issue; initiate research Sept. 2002)
      • computer (initiate research mid-2003)
  • Vision
      • EU-EPA collaboration
      • sleep, active power and standby power
      • energy efficient power supplies
      • USB driven products
      • universal imaging specification