Originally Posted by gupsterg
From what The Stilt has stated about AMD GPUs ASIC quality = LeakageID.
I know this goes against what is shown in GPU-Z info on ASIC quality tab but The Stilt has good information and experience of AMD GPUs. What he has stated held true for me on Hawaii and Fiji. He recently also posted
similar info in the Polaris 10 discussion thread.
The truth isn't so simple. Higher ASIC quality means lower operating voltage and less heat output at a certain frequency target. Behavior outside of that target can seem almost completely independent of ASIC quality (though it's not).
Technically, higher ASIC quality means lower leakage, therefore lower power consumption and more overclocking headroom at moderate temperatures (this is in keeping with GPU-z, IIRC). However, temperature and voltage can change leakage dramatically (to the fourth and second powers, respectively), so these properties change as soon as you start tweaking the GPU configuration.
I have a 78.1% ASIC quality R9 290 - a rather good sample. It runs at lower voltage, generates less heat, and can under-volt very well. Give it the slightest extra juice, though, and it all that goes away completely. And, when it's hot, it pulls more power than the average R9 290 (I can easily get my card to pull 420W, at which point I run out of the sensible power limits).
A lower ASIC quality means higher leakage, which requires more voltage to run at its default clocks, which means more baseline consumption, but usually means less extra power is consumed when you overclock. The extra leakage means the transistors, on average, are more willing to switch states - provided you can prevent overheating... which can be a challenge.
So the observation can be that, at normal temperatures, overclocking on a lower ASIC quality GPU can be easier and draw less extra power, but that's because the voltage and power usage floor are already elevated.