PCMark05: CPU & Memory
For our next round of synthetic benchmarks, we ran the CPU and Memory performance modules built into Futuremark's brand new PCMark05. We just recently began working with PCMark 05 and 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.
Throughout this review, we'll be comparing the Athlon 64 X2 3800+ processor's performance to AMD's flagship dual-core processor, the X2 4800+, and the 2.8GHz Pentium D 820. As you can see, PCMark05's CPU performance module had the X2 3800+ finishing well behind either CPU. However, this test favors Intel's architecture, as you can surmise based on the miniscule lead the 4800+ held over the Pentium D 820.
"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.
Unfortunately, we do not have any PCMark05 Memory performance scores to report for our AMD powered systems, due to a problem we've uncovered with Asus' A8N Deluxe motherboards and this benchmark. The test locks up in the midst of the 8MB or 16MB block write portions of the module on some A8N Deluxe motherboards, but somewhat surprisingly this doesn't happen on the A8N SLI Premium. We've reported the problem to AMD, Futuremark, and Asus in the past, but we haven't been presented with a solution as of yet.