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Energy saving potential in the AC (air conditioning) system is the focus of the researchers all over the world. In China, the main problems in AC systems are the high consumption and low utilization of energy. Enormous energy is consumed by the air conditioning systems of residential buildings, which makes the energy conservation more important. Currently many kinds of central air-conditioning systems are being used in residential buildings, each has different energy efficiency and will lead to different total energy consumption. So the selection of AC system schemes is of great significance to energy conservation. In this paper, based on an existing building, six schemes of residential central AC systems are presented, and their primary energy ratios are calculated respectively. The results show that the primary energy ratio of water loop heat pump system is the maximum, which will be the optimal AC system scheme for the residential buildings, and that of household gas-fired air conditioning system is the minimum, the application of which will not be good to energy conservation from the view of energy utilization.