Power ConsumptionAs mentioned before, the Core i9-10900K is subject to several power limits, which is the only way Intel could achieve significant performance improvements while staying within their TDP rating. The test below tries to illustrate the various limits. We run the rendering software Blender while measuring full system power consumption.
As you can see, as soon as the load starts, power consumption shoots up to 310 W. After a few seconds at maximum power, the CPU will throttle the load down to 125 W, so it stays within the processor's TDP rating of 125 W.
Allowing short bursts of activity is perfectly valid because the CPU heatsink has time to cool down while the system is idle, which frees up additional thermal budget for the Boost algorithm to exploit.
This mechanism is called PL1 Tau using EWMA (exponentially weighed moving average). Basically, the CPU measures the time it is idle (or lightly loaded) and allocates an energy budget for boost to exceed the PL1 limit.