The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is in the process of drafting the 8th version of its television efficiency specification.
Key proposed program specification changes include:
- Automatic Brightness Control (ABC): ABC has been shown to be an effective way to reduce TV power consumption in low-light rooms. While ENERGY STAR certified TVs typically ship to consumers with ABC enabled by default, studies have shown that some consumers, wishing a brighter or more impressive preset picture setting, can easily disable the TV’s ABC. This results in a dramatic reduction of promised energy savings, usually without the consumer realizing their action’s consequences. To minimize this, in order to qualify as an ABC “enabled by default” TV, the EPA is proposing that the TV not have more than 1 preset picture setting that doesn’t have ABC enabled by default. Additional minimum average luminance requirements might also be set; a minimum screen luminance of 125 cd/m2 at 3 lux has been suggested to ensure that the screen is not too dim during viewing.
- Power consumption change notification: An ENERGY STAR certified TV would alert consumers when selecting a preset picture setting without ABC that would result in higher power consumption.
- High Dynamic Range (HDR): Additional testing and reporting is being proposed so that consumers understand the increased energy cost due to HDR upscaling.
- Scope: Home theater displays (HTD), supporting TV viewing through streaming instead of a tuner, could be added to this specification.
The maximum allowable power that an ENERGY STAR TV can consume in different modes of operation isn’t expected to change with the new version. An ENERGY STAR TV’s maximum on-mode power consumption will still be determined by the following equations:
Equation 1. On Mode Power Requirement for All TV/HTD
Where PON = measured on mode power consumption (W), PON_MAX = maximum on mode power requirement calculated per equation 2 (W), and PHR = high resolution allowance calculated per equation 3 (W).
Equation 2. Maximum On Mode Power Requirement for All TV/HTD
Where PON_MAX = maximum allowable on mode power consumption (W); A = viewable screen area (in2), and tanh is the hyperbolic tangent function.
TVs and HTDs with native vertical resolution ≥ 2160 lines are eligible for a high resolution on mode power allowance (PHR) as calculated per equation 3.
Equation 3. On Mode Power Allowance for TV/HTD with Native Vertical Resolution ≥ 2160 lines
Where PHR = high resolution on mode power allowance (W), and PON_MAX = maximum allowable on mode power consumption (W) calculated per equation 2.
Maximum standby-passive mode power consumption and standby-active low mode power consumption (i.e. network connected) limits are expected to remain the same at 0.5 W and 3.0 W, respectively.
The EPA hopes to complete version 8 this summer and have it become effective starting in 2018. For a copy of the 2nd draft of version 8.0 television specification, click here. For additional information, including a set of May 15th stakeholder webinar slides, visit the ENERGY STAR television program version 8 web page. Stakeholders should send comments and any data pertaining to this spec development to email@example.com.