Just want to share my experience using linux on a dell xps 15 7590 laptop, I have tried several desktop variants, compared the power consumption of each and found that gnome wayland variant has the lowest power consumption, around/below 10 W (with an oled panel), even XFCE consumes around 15 W, KDE similar using the intel graphic card only with nvidia driver. Browser video acceleration hardly works, currently only under X11 only with chromium, with firefox I was never able to get it work (measuring it with intel_gpu_top even if webrender is enabled under wayland (it doesn’t work under X either). Since kernel 5.12 oled backlight can be dimmed with the hardware keys, so only the fingerprint reader doesn’t work (it won’t have any driver ever).
What is your experience with linux on laptops, what is the power consumption, video acceleration, what desktop are you using?
X consumes more energy because it is more complex and handles all the messages between the applications you run and the compositor rendering the outuput. Wayland was built from scratch to overcome X’s unnecessary complexity and security issues. It’s simpler in design, but it also less flexible.
Here is a brief explanation. There are better, deeper ones, if you look for them.
Anyway, you can setup your laptop to save more energy. I personally use TLP and a few more settings to limit a lot of functions, such as screen brightness, maximum CPU and GPU frequency, among other stuff. I can post it later, if you want. The settings I refered are the ones with more impact.
enabled tlp, limited the intel gpu perfomance to minimum, enabled all the powersavings for wifi, cpu, etc.
disabled the nvidia gpu with nvidia_smi (this is the only thing that is done recently, every other was done since the installation)
I don’t think I can improve the battery life significantly any more for this laptop, but with oled screen and i9 cpu I don’t have high expectations for battery life.
I’d like to test desktops though, that’s why I have compared the xorg vs wayland battery life. (there is no working browser video acceleration at the moment under wayland for me)