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Topic: Increase in power consumption of Switch in Stand by mode.

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Hikingguy

**I posted this originally on the Switch thread but I thought I might get more answer with its own topic.**

Anyone have a Watt meter hooked up to their Switch?

Earlier in the year I posted how the Switch uses really low power. However, recently, I do not exactly know when, my Switch started to use significantly more power in Sleep Mode. The increase in power consumption appears to only be when my USB to Ethernet adapter is connected to the Switch and the internet and then put into Sleep Mode.
In the past, while in "sleep mode" it drew about 0.2 watts. Now when I put it in Sleep mode it draws plus or minus about 4 watts. That is a big bump in consistent power draw from 0.2 watts to 4.0 watts while doing nothing in Sleep mode.
But the odd thing is when I put the Switch into sleep mode and then I unplug my USB to Ethernet adapter the watts drop back down to the 0.2 range. I have tried multiple USB to Ethernet adapters on multiple Switch consoles and they all do the same thing.
Turning the Switch to "power off", will drop the watts down to the original 0.2 watt range again. So it seems to have something to do with the USB adapter being attached at the time of putting the Switch in sleep mode.
I am taking my reading when nothing else is being charged so no extra power is being used for that.

I do not look at my watt meter every day, but I know it used less power in January of this year when I originally measured it, so something must have changed from then to now.
Maybe since the 5.0 update. But that is only a guess.

One person suggested it might be the internet always being active since the 5.0 update. That very well might be it, but my goodness, going from 0.2 watts to about 4.0 watts is a huge jump for being "off". Also, I have no wifi being used. Everything is hardwired. I know for sure because I have a meter to check for any wireless data being active.

I did call Nintendo support, and they had no idea what I was talking about. No surprise, but I thought I would try.

If it is always checking the internet, any way to turn that off?

Any ideas?
Thanks

(Edited for clarity)

Edited on by Hikingguy

Hikingguy

Noonch

I heard the same as you. The system is constantly checking wifi to see if you have purchased new software from the website. Powering off is the only way to stop this monster.

My other Switch is a WiiU.

Switch Friend Code: SW-1211-3752-9627 | 3DS Friend Code: 2552-1230-7713

Hikingguy

@Noonch geezz, that is a major bummer. But it make sense.
That seems like a completely unnecessary waste of my power just to check to see if I bought something online.
I wish they made turning it off easier then. The only way I am aware of getting to the "Off" mode is quite possibly the least convenient way to turn the console off.

Thanks

Hikingguy

SwitchForce

Here's what I get ethernet is always constantly powered you might not think so but you proved the point when you unplug the ethernet the watt drops. And if you don't have wifi setup I doubt it will go looking by itself. So this sounds more like the problem is coming from your ethernet connection being connected caused the power rise. Putting to sleep doesn't stop the connections a full power off or no ethernet will stop it from checking.

SwitchForce

Hikingguy

@SwitchForce You are right, it is doing something. But my point is, it was not always like that. Until sometime in the last few months the power reading was always at 0.2 Watts for "Sleep Mode" and "power off". It was like that for all my Switch consoles. But for some reason it has recently changed.
I know 4 watts does not seems like a lot, but there is a huge difference between 0.2 watts 24/7 and 4.0 watts 24/7.

I mean if it really was part if the 5.0 update and if what someone suggested was accurate that the part about the :
"Digital software purchases made from a PC or smart device will start downloading sooner than previously, even if the Nintendo Switch console is in Sleep Mode"
Is really keeping the Switch active to just wait and see if I am buying software online only to download it sooner is really using all that power, then I want an easy option to turn it off.
I will not be using that feature, but I will be paying for it.

Hikingguy

Hikingguy

@Heavyarms55 Most added features that I do not want or need I can easily ignore, but I want to be able to turn this off.
If I buy games for the Switch, I buy them on the Switch not on my PC.
Considering the Switch use to be at 0.2 watts in sleep mode and after a system update the Switch is now at about 4.0 watts in sleep mode, all most likely for a feature that I will never use, makes me slightly perturbed .

Hikingguy

Heavyarms55

@Hikingguy Have you tested it after doing a full power off, rather than sleep mode? I mean if you are concerned about power usage, you should probably be fully shutting down anyway. Also it isn't only checking for games purchased via the website. Unless you turn off automatic update, it will download updates for games you already have. The idea being that that way, you wont choose Splatoon 2, for example, and have to wait for an update to download.

Heavyarms55

Hikingguy

@Heavyarms55

According to my previous readings from before an update, my watt meter showed the power consumption for "power off" and "sleep mode" to be within 0.1 watt. That is not that big of a deal. It was strange, but "power off" was consistently reading 0.3 watts and before the update "sleep mode" was reading 0.2 watts.
So because it was far easier to put the unit into sleep mode, that is what I did. "Power off" the unit is far less convenient.
BTW, turning auto updates off does not seem to affect how much power is used in sleep mode. It is still reading about 4.0 watts.
I would have much less of an issue with this if when I held down the power button on my controller or selected it from the main menu, it gave me an option to turn it off. But power off is only available when I hold the very tiny power button on the Switch for 4 seconds.

I realize that the vast majority of people are never going to know how much power the unit consumes.
But I know that it used considerable less power in the past while the device was in "sleep mode" and that makes me wonder what is going on now that it needs to use about 4 more watts while doing the same thing. That is, not being used.

Edit: I just check the power consumption while in "off mode" and with the USB to Ethernet plugged in it seems like it is at 0.4 watts and when I unplugged the USB to Ethernet controller it drops to the 0.3 watts.

Edited on by Hikingguy

Hikingguy

Heavyarms55

@Hikingguy Interesting. I am by no means an expert, but it could have something to do with how the Switch Dock doubles as a charging device. Unlike, say, PS4 or a desktop PC, the Switch is also a portable device with a battery. Perhaps that draw of power is there to keep the battery at 100%. Though that doesn't explain the changes after the update. Is the power draw different with the ethernet unplugged?

Heavyarms55

Hikingguy

Yes it is different.
Let me explain. When I put the Switch into "Sleep Mode" while the USB to Ethernet attachment is connected, I get a reading of about 4 Watts. Now lets say after being in "Sleep Mode" I unplug the USB to Ethernet adapter, the power will drop to 0.2 watts. And it seems if I plug it back in the power does not go back to about 4.0 but settles at 0.3 watts.
And it is the same if I unplug the USB to Ethernet adapter before putting the console into "Sleep Mode" the watts are at that 0.2 watts
I rarely every use my Switch in portable mode. So the Switch should always be charged.

Hikingguy

Heavyarms55

@Hikingguy Pure hypothesis here. But I imagine that, when you put the Switch to sleep, it is connecting to the internet via the Ethernet to do its thing with updates and checking for downloads. However, if you unplug and and plug the Ethernet back in, it does not reconnect to the internet until you wake the Switch back up, thus it not going all the way back up to 4 watts. The reason it goes up to 0.3 rather than 0.2 could be some function within the Switch simply confirming the connection of the Ethernet without actually reconnecting to the internet itself.

As to batteries, they lose charge when not in use, so some draw, to keep the Switch at 100% makes sense. This way the Switch is always charged and ready for you.

Heavyarms55

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