Trying to meet ENERGY STAR requirements to maintain energy efficiency is a constant design challenge. As the number of consumer devices in homes increases and when taking energy from the grid, designers want to improve light-load efficiency without increasing cost or complexity. Reducing the product’s power consumption by one watt can save megawatts from the grid, especially with high volume consumer applications such as the set-top box. The semiconductor industry has developed new offline AC/DC and point-of-load (POL) DC/DC solutions that greatly improve efficiency at lower stand-by power levels. This paper highlights new techniques used by new flyback and secondary-side controllers, and compares two complete POL architectures with and without the light-load efficiency feature.