Windows 10 Performance Boost When Plugged In

Did you know, if you are using a Windows 10 laptop you get a general performance boost from your processor when you are plugged in.

The boost in performance is not related to a change in power mode, and happens regardless of which power mode you have selected, even if it is “Best performance”.

However when it comes to Macbooks, performance remains the same, whether you are plugged in or on battery power only.

How to check (Windows 10)

You way want to see this happen for yourself. Fortunately you can do this very easily and without installing additional software.

Before you check:

  • Close all applications, or at least heavy ones.
  • Make sure you give your computer a few seconds before switching between unplugging and plugging in, to let the difference in performance happen, and to let the CPU settle at a speed.

Plus you don’t want to mess something up with your computer by plugging in and out too fast.

Follow the steps below:

  1. Press, “ctrl+alt+delete” and select “Task Manager”.
  2. If you have not already, at the bottom of task manager click “More details”.
  3. Then, select “Performance” from the row of tabs at the top.
  4. By default the CPU tab should be selected, if not click it.
  5. You should now be able to see information about your CPU and what speed it is running at.
  6. When monitoring for a difference in CPU performance you will want to watch the “Speed” number.

See images below, for what you should be looking at and where:

Screen shot of Windows task manager on performance tab.
Screen shot of Windows 10 Task Manager on the performance tab.
Screen shot of Windows task manager on performance tab highlighting CPU Speed.
Screen shot of CPU speed, highlighted.

Youtuber Dave Lee has also noted this in a video he produced about laptops for creators. Go to 7:47 on the video.