Im reading into cpu usage and read this in some documentation

"Use HDMI as composite requires more CPU usage."

Does that mean that using the audio over the HDMI is going to use the CPU less or more?

  • 2
    in some documentation. We need more context to answer this question. What documentation? As far as I can tell, your question is nonsense.
    – Jacobm001
    Jun 8, 2017 at 3:16
  • Yeah but that is literally all it said. I'm looking at the documentation for Overclocking in RetroPie... specifically optimizing for N64 retropie.org.uk/docs/Optimization-for-Nintendo-64
    – SentOnLine
    Jun 8, 2017 at 4:41
  • This out of context quote from a questionable website is off-topic.
    – Milliways
    Jun 8, 2017 at 11:39
  • A question about CPU usage on the Raspberry Pi referencing documentation from some of the Pi's most popular software is off topic for Raspberry Pi StackExchange? ....okay
    – SentOnLine
    Jun 8, 2017 at 13:29
  • 1
    @Milliways: I disagree on multiple levels. 1) The software is specifically targeted to the RPi. 2) A claim has been made as to how the RPi hardware behaves. Asking for confirmation/refutation of that claim is certainly a discussion unique to the RPi.
    – Jacobm001
    Jun 8, 2017 at 16:23

2 Answers 2


The article you linked to has the following statement:

Notes on Audio


Use HDMI as composite requires more CPU usage.

This statement is nonsense and doesn't make sense. It's possible that they're trying to say that using a 3.5mm to 3xRCA output requires more CPU than using the HDMI port, but I can't find any real data to back up the claim.

Thinking about the issue, the graphics output should be handled by the GPU, so I don't know why this would be true. This seems to be a case where the documentation just sucks. Sorry.


From what I've seen here, I think it means that when you use a 3.5mm to 3 x RCA to plug the Pi into a composite tv/screen, it uses more CPU.

  • 1
    Your linked page is anecdotally interesting, but I think they're asking questions more than providing benchmarks.
    – goobering
    Jun 8, 2017 at 8:14
  • It's the only thing I could find
    – user67191
    Jun 8, 2017 at 8:16
  • Not a problem - others may disagree with me! Thanks for taking the time to answer.
    – goobering
    Jun 8, 2017 at 8:19

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