Alienware Area-51 7500 Gaming System
For our next round of synthetic benchmarks, we ran the CPU and memory performance modules built into Futuremark's PCMark05. We incorporated PCMark05 into our benchmark suite soon after its release, and we have found it to be even more robust in terms of test features than its predecessor. That said, the CPU and memory test modules we use for comparison are very similar to the 04 version of the test suite. For those interested in more than just the graphs, we've got a couple of quotes directly from Futuremark that explain exactly what these tests do, and how they work.
"The CPU test suite is a collection of tests that are run to isolate the performance of the CPU. The CPU Test Suite also includes multithreading: two of the test scenarios are run multithreaded; the other including two simultaneous tests and the other running four tests simultaneously. The remaining six tests are run single threaded. Operations include, File Compression/Decompression, Encryption/Decryption, Image Decompression, and Audio Compression" - Courtesy FutureMark Corp.
The Area-51 7500 performs right on par with our custom Core 2 Extreme QX6700 system, which is what we expected. The reason the Area-51 7500 falls behind the Dell XPS 710 H2C is because the Dell XPS is overclocked to 3.2GHz with the same processor as the Area-51 7500, which naturally puts it at quite an advantage in this and other benchmarks.
"The Memory test suite is a collection of tests that isolate the performance of the memory subsystem. The memory subsystem consists of various devices on the PC. This includes the main memory, the CPU internal cache (known as the L1 cache) and the external cache (known as the L2 cache). As it is difficult to find applications that only stress the memory, we explicitly developed a set of tests geared for this purpose. The tests are written in C++ and assembly. They include: Reading data blocks from memory, Writing data blocks to memory performing copy operations on data blocks, random access to data items and latency testing." - Courtesy FutureMark Corp.
Again, the Area-51 7500 performs in line with the custom Core 2 Extreme QX6700 system, which is somewhat interesting considering that the Area-51 7500 uses an nForce 680i SLI motherboard while the custom system uses an Intel 975X Express motherboard.