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Dell Cites Green Successes

Dell promised two years ago to cut its products' energy consumption by 25 percent, and now claims victory.

Dell promised two years ago to cut its products' energy consumption by 25 percent, and now claims victory.Of course, as the announcement notes, the 25 percent is an average. Power use fell 48 percent in two years for the OptiPlex 980 small form factor and OptiPlex 780 ultra-small form factor systems (compared to the old OptiPlex 960 and OptiPlex 760 systems.) Meanwhile, its new 15-inch LED flat-panel displays use about 43 percent less power (at full brightness) than the older cold cathode fluorescent lamp (CCFL) displays.

No examples from the other end of the equation (i.e., products that ended up using more energy) were given.

Meanwhile, the 25 percent average improvement builds on gains made between 2005 and 2008, when the energy efficiency of Dell's OptiPlex desktops reportedly improved nearly 50 percent, and that of its Latitude laptops improved 16 percent.

Dell additionally boasts that it offers more power supplies with 80 PLUS Gold certification than any other top-tier computer maker. The certifications go to power supplies that are at least 80 percent efficient, and the list can be seen here.

Dell's statement about 80 PLUS Gold is literally true. Counting both 120-volt and 240-volt units, Dell has 81 on the list, while HP has 52, IBM has 6, and Lenovo has 27. But there are OEM suppliers with hundreds on the list, and other computer vendors would presumably be free to use those units. (The FSP Group in Taiwan, for instance, has the most products on the list.)

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