OK, I replaced may old core components (mobo and CPU).
Survey: Startup times and methods
Here are the new parts and their times. I was surprised at the differences.
1. Hardware Configuration
* DFI LANParty UT nF3 250Gb Socket 754
* AMD Sempron 3000+ 64bit Socket 754 CPU 1.8GHz, 128KB L2 Cache - about 30w max at stock 1.4v, has "Cool and Quiet" and 90nm core.
* 256mb RAM
* old IBM 40G HDD at 7200rpm
* TNT 2 Vanta PCI video card
* Chaintech AV-710 soundcard for sweet, sweet, S/P DIF sound.
* Opus 150
2. Software Configuration
* Windows XP Pro Corp (fresh install)
* IR reciever for steering wheel buttons
3. Startup Strategy
* Regular Hibernation
* also using S3 Standby
4. Startup time, broken down by component of possible
* startup controller delay - standard 10 second delay of Opus 150
* BIOS delay - 10 seconds for video card alone, then 13sec for mobo BIOS
* boot time or restore from disk/ram time - HDD loading from hibernation is 8 seconds (twice as quick as before)
* application startup time (cold boot only) - N/A
* total time from startup initiation (ignition or remote entry) until music comes from speakers - about 31. It's just a little faster overall.
* Using S3 suspend/standby I get music in about 6 seconds
5. Subjective information
* On a scale of 1 (not important) to 10 (very important) how important is a quick startup time? 8
* On a scale of 1 (not satisfied) to 10 (very satisfied) how do you feel about the startup time of your system? 6 or so from hibernation. I know I can shave some time with a new video card, plus I haven't played around in the BIOS yet to reduce time. A 9 from S3. I like it!
* On a scale of 1 (not important) to 10 (very important) rate how interested you are in improving your startup time. 2
I was really surprised by how fast the HDD loads from hibernation. It's twice as quick as it was before, but I don't know why. It's a fresh XP install, but it has all the same programs running as before. The Foxconn mobo I mentioned before wasn't a good choice as they were bought by another company over a year ago and their product quality has gone way downhill since then. Avoid those if at all possible.
In case anyone does not know, the new 90nm AMD Semprons are much cooler than the earlier 130nm cores. The desktop versions are about 30w max at stock 1.4v voltage. They also undervolt really well, but it is not necessary. The 3000+ and faster versions have AMD's "Cool and Quite" technology. The CPU can throttle down when full speed is not needed. Plus this mobo has very good fan control in the BIOS and with the software, has even more fan control. This thing runs so cool with the stock HSF that the CPU fan does not even come on. Nights around here have been in the 60-70 range and the heatsink barely gets warm with the fan off! If it does warm up to my preset temp, the fan will turn on at reduced speed which can be controlled in the software. If it gets really warm (I chose 140*F) the fan will turn on 100%, but I don't think it will ever do that. Maybe in the summer time. All in all, I'm very impressed with this CPU/mobo combo. The only sound at all is the HDD. I kind of want to pull this thing out and use it in the house. Also, If anyone thinks the 1.8Ghz is not enough for them, these CPU's have been known to overclock to 2.3-2.4Ghz (about 4000+) with stock voltage. I don't need to do that as the stock 3000+ is more than enough for my needs as well as future needs.
Now that I have a reliable working PSU in the Opus 150 I can use S3 standby/suspend. So far it's pretty great. It resumes in about 6 seconds. I've tested it off for 9 hours straight and the battery level showed 12.2, car cranked fine and no signs of any low battery levels. This weekend I'll test the off time for 24+ hours. Since this is my only car I can't see me not having to drive it for more than 36 or so hours. If I have to leave it longer than that, I can hibernate it. If a week or 2 then pull the power plug. I'll report back on the S3 battery levels over time to make sure all is well.