Kernels and graphics drivers for reducing power consumption

Hello,

After using the OS for a while, I like it overall but I have multiple issues that pushes me away from it. One of them is higher battery drain compared to other KDE arch based distros like endeavourOS where I can get like extra 2 hours of battery life with the same usage pattern.

I was wondering how to reduce this drain and my question is: can changing the kernel to main linux kernel or lts help in it?
also, if I change the kernel do I have to change the nvidia drivers from dkms to nvidia-open?
If yes, how can this be done since dkms drivers are required in some config files?
also, is using wayland better than x11 for battery consumtion and overall performance or it does not matter?

here is garuda-inxi output

System:
Kernel: 6.9.6-zen1-1-zen arch: x86_64 bits: 64 compiler: gcc v: 14.1.1
clocksource: tsc avail: acpi_pm
parameters: BOOT_IMAGE=/@/boot/vmlinuz-linux-zen
root=UUID=d6be05e8-7ce0-4f9c-826c-98d4c5faf2b7 rw rootflags=subvol=@
quiet loglevel=3 ibt=off
Desktop: KDE Plasma v: 6.1.1 tk: Qt v: N/A info: frameworks v: 6.3.0
wm: kwin_wayland vt: 1 dm: SDDM Distro: Garuda base: Arch Linux
Machine:
Type: Laptop System: Razer product: Blade Pro 17 (Early 2021) - RZ09-0368
v: 6.04 serial: <superuser required> Chassis: type: 10
serial: <superuser required>
Mobo: Razer model: DA760 v: 4 serial: <superuser required>
part-nu: RZ09-0368AEA2 uuid: <superuser required> UEFI: Razer v: 1.01
date: 01/05/2021
Battery:
ID-1: BAT0 charge: 68.7 Wh (100.0%) condition: 68.7/70.6 Wh (97.3%)
volts: 17.5 min: 15.4 model: Razer Blade type: Unknown serial: <filter>
status: full
CPU:
Info: model: Intel Core i7-10875H bits: 64 type: MT MCP arch: Comet Lake
gen: core 10 level: v3 note: check built: 2020 process: Intel 14nm family: 6
model-id: 0xA5 (165) stepping: 2 microcode: 0xFA
Topology: cpus: 1x cores: 8 tpc: 2 threads: 16 smt: enabled cache:
L1: 512 KiB desc: d-8x32 KiB; i-8x32 KiB L2: 2 MiB desc: 8x256 KiB
L3: 16 MiB desc: 1x16 MiB
Speed (MHz): avg: 881 high: 2100 min/max: 800/5100 scaling:
driver: intel_pstate governor: powersave cores: 1: 800 2: 800 3: 800 4: 800
5: 800 6: 800 7: 800 8: 800 9: 800 10: 2100 11: 800 12: 800 13: 800
14: 800 15: 800 16: 800 bogomips: 73598
Flags: avx avx2 ht lm nx pae sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3 vmx
Vulnerabilities: <filter>
Graphics:
Device-1: Intel CometLake-H GT2 [UHD Graphics] vendor: Razer USA
driver: i915 v: kernel arch: Gen-9.5 process: Intel 14nm built: 2016-20
ports: active: eDP-1 empty: none bus-ID: 00:02.0 chip-ID: 8086:9bc4
class-ID: 0300
Device-2: NVIDIA GA106M [GeForce RTX 3060 Mobile / Max-Q]
vendor: Razer USA driver: nvidia v: 550.90.07 alternate: nouveau,nvidia_drm
non-free: 550.xx+ status: current (as of 2024-06; EOL~2026-12-xx)
arch: Ampere code: GAxxx process: TSMC n7 (7nm) built: 2020-2023 pcie:
gen: 3 speed: 8 GT/s lanes: 16 link-max: gen: 4 speed: 16 GT/s ports:
active: none empty: DP-1, DP-2, DP-3, HDMI-A-1 bus-ID: 01:00.0
chip-ID: 10de:2520 class-ID: 0300
Device-3: IMC Networks Integrated Camera driver: uvcvideo type: USB
rev: 2.0 speed: 480 Mb/s lanes: 1 mode: 2.0 bus-ID: 1-7:2 chip-ID: 13d3:56d5
class-ID: 0e02 serial: <filter>
Display: wayland server: X.org v: 1.21.1.13 with: Xwayland v: 24.1.0
compositor: kwin_wayland driver: X: loaded: modesetting,nvidia
unloaded: nouveau alternate: fbdev,intel,nv,vesa dri: iris
gpu: i915,nvidia display-ID: 0
Monitor-1: eDP-1 res: 1920x1080 size: N/A modes: N/A
API: EGL v: 1.5 hw: drv: intel iris drv: nvidia platforms: device: 0
drv: nvidia device: 2 drv: iris device: 3 drv: swrast gbm: drv: nvidia
surfaceless: drv: nvidia wayland: drv: iris x11: drv: iris
inactive: device-1
API: OpenGL v: 4.6.0 compat-v: 4.5 vendor: intel mesa v: 24.1.2-arch1.1
glx-v: 1.4 direct-render: yes renderer: Mesa Intel UHD Graphics (CML GT2)
device-ID: 8086:9bc4 memory: 7.56 GiB unified: yes display-ID: :1.0
API: Vulkan v: 1.3.279 layers: 4 device: 0 type: integrated-gpu name: Intel
UHD Graphics (CML GT2) driver: mesa intel v: 24.1.2-arch1.1
device-ID: 8086:9bc4 surfaces: xcb,xlib,wayland device: 1
type: discrete-gpu name: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 Laptop GPU driver: nvidia
v: 550.90.07 device-ID: 10de:2520 surfaces: xcb,xlib,wayland device: 2
type: cpu name: llvmpipe (LLVM 17.0.6 256 bits) driver: mesa llvmpipe
v: 24.1.2-arch1.1 (LLVM 17.0.6) device-ID: 10005:0000
surfaces: xcb,xlib,wayland
Audio:
Device-1: Intel Comet Lake PCH cAVS vendor: Razer USA driver: snd_hda_intel
v: kernel alternate: snd_soc_skl, snd_soc_avs, snd_sof_pci_intel_cnl
bus-ID: 00:1f.3 chip-ID: 8086:06c8 class-ID: 0403
Device-2: NVIDIA GA106 High Definition Audio vendor: Razer USA
driver: snd_hda_intel v: kernel pcie: gen: 3 speed: 8 GT/s lanes: 16
link-max: gen: 4 speed: 16 GT/s bus-ID: 01:00.1 chip-ID: 10de:228e
class-ID: 0403
API: ALSA v: k6.9.6-zen1-1-zen status: kernel-api tools: N/A
Server-1: PipeWire v: 1.0.7 status: active with: 1: pipewire-pulse
status: active 2: wireplumber status: active 3: pipewire-alsa type: plugin
4: pw-jack type: plugin tools: pactl,pw-cat,pw-cli,wpctl
Network:
Device-1: Realtek RTL8125 2.5GbE vendor: Razer USA driver: r8169 v: kernel
pcie: gen: 2 speed: 5 GT/s lanes: 1 port: 3000 bus-ID: 3d:00.0
chip-ID: 10ec:8125 class-ID: 0200
IF: enp61s0 state: down mac: <filter>
Device-2: Intel Wi-Fi 6E AX210/AX1675 2x2 [Typhoon Peak] driver: iwlwifi
v: kernel pcie: gen: 2 speed: 5 GT/s lanes: 1 bus-ID: 3f:00.0
chip-ID: 8086:2725 class-ID: 0280
IF: wlp63s0 state: up mac: <filter>
Info: services: NetworkManager, systemd-timesyncd, wpa_supplicant
Bluetooth:
Device-1: Intel AX210 Bluetooth driver: btusb v: 0.8 type: USB rev: 2.0
speed: 12 Mb/s lanes: 1 mode: 1.1 bus-ID: 1-14:5 chip-ID: 8087:0032
class-ID: e001
Report: btmgmt ID: hci0 rfk-id: 2 state: down bt-service: enabled,running
rfk-block: hardware: no software: yes address: <filter> bt-v: 5.3 lmp-v: 12
status: discoverable: no pairing: no
Drives:
Local Storage: total: 1.38 TiB used: 12.18 GiB (0.9%)
SMART Message: Unable to run smartctl. Root privileges required.
ID-1: /dev/nvme0n1 maj-min: 259:0 model: NVMe CA5-8D512 size: 476.94 GiB
block-size: physical: 512 B logical: 512 B speed: 31.6 Gb/s lanes: 4
tech: SSD serial: <filter> fw-rev: CQ20904 temp: 35.9 C scheme: GPT
ID-2: /dev/nvme1n1 maj-min: 259:8 vendor: Samsung model: SSD 980 1TB
size: 931.51 GiB block-size: physical: 512 B logical: 512 B speed: 31.6 Gb/s
lanes: 4 tech: SSD serial: <filter> fw-rev: 1B4QFXO7 temp: 43.9 C
scheme: GPT
Partition:
ID-1: / raw-size: 49.04 GiB size: 49.04 GiB (100.00%)
used: 11.58 GiB (23.6%) fs: btrfs dev: /dev/nvme0n1p7 maj-min: 259:7
ID-2: /boot/efi raw-size: 2.56 GiB size: 2.55 GiB (99.80%)
used: 616.6 MiB (23.6%) fs: vfat dev: /dev/nvme0n1p1 maj-min: 259:1
ID-3: /home raw-size: 49.04 GiB size: 49.04 GiB (100.00%)
used: 11.58 GiB (23.6%) fs: btrfs dev: /dev/nvme0n1p7 maj-min: 259:7
ID-4: /var/log raw-size: 49.04 GiB size: 49.04 GiB (100.00%)
used: 11.58 GiB (23.6%) fs: btrfs dev: /dev/nvme0n1p7 maj-min: 259:7
ID-5: /var/tmp raw-size: 49.04 GiB size: 49.04 GiB (100.00%)
used: 11.58 GiB (23.6%) fs: btrfs dev: /dev/nvme0n1p7 maj-min: 259:7
Swap:
Kernel: swappiness: 133 (default 60) cache-pressure: 100 (default) zswap: no
ID-1: swap-1 type: zram size: 15.48 GiB used: 0 KiB (0.0%) priority: 100
comp: zstd avail: lzo,lzo-rle,lz4,lz4hc,842 max-streams: 16 dev: /dev/zram0
Sensors:
System Temperatures: cpu: 51.0 C pch: 46.0 C mobo: N/A
Fan Speeds (rpm): N/A
Info:
Memory: total: 16 GiB available: 15.48 GiB used: 2.9 GiB (18.7%)
Processes: 350 Power: uptime: 14m states: freeze,mem,disk suspend: deep
avail: s2idle wakeups: 0 hibernate: platform avail: shutdown, reboot,
suspend, test_resume image: 6.15 GiB services: org_kde_powerdevil,
power-profiles-daemon, thermald, upowerd Init: systemd v: 256
default: graphical tool: systemctl
Packages: pm: pacman pkgs: 1408 libs: 410 tools: octopi,pamac,paru
Compilers: gcc: 14.1.1 Shell: garuda-inxi default: fish v: 3.7.1
running-in: konsole inxi: 3.3.35
Garuda (2.6.26-1):
System install date:     2024-06-28
Last full system update: 2024-06-28
Is partially upgraded:   No
Relevant software:       snapper NetworkManager dracut nvidia-dkms
Windows dual boot:       Probably (Run as root to verify)
Failed units:            intel-undervolt.service

Check garuda-assistant - Settings

Or just use EnOS :slight_smile:

I did activate all the power saving tweaks. But still did not get much a difference. But will the points I mentioned in the original post affect the battery drain?

Did not get what you want to say. But if it is about enabling the power saving tweaks then I did

EndeavourOS uses a different kernel. Garuda Linux uses the linux-zen kernel by default, which is optimized for performance and actually uses more energy depending on the application. If you don’t need this performance on your laptop, then just install different kernels and test around a bit.

If you want to use linux-lts, then it is recommended to install the nvidia-lts drivers.

You can also try another power management tool in case kde powerdevil cannot handle your hardware.
You can find a detailed overview of power management here:
https://wiki.archlinux.org/title/Power_management

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