Asus Zenbook UX21 Ultrabook, The New Thin

PCMark Vantage and PCMark 7

Futuremark's PCMark 7 is the latest version of the PCMark suite, recently released this spring. It has updated application performance measurements targeted for a Windows 7 environment. Here's what Futuremark says is incorporated in the base PCMark suite and the Entertainment suite, the two modules we have benchmark scores for you here.

Futuremark PCMark 7
General Application and Multimedia Performance
The PCMark test is a collection of workloads that measure system performance during typical desktop usage. This is the most important test since it returns the official PCMark score for the system
  • Windows Defender
  • Importing pictures
  • Gaming

Video Playback and transcoding

  • DirectX 9

Image manipulation
Web browsing and decrypting

The Entertainment test is a collection of workloads that measure system performance in entertainment scenarios using mostly application workloads. Individual tests include recording, viewing, streaming and transcoding TV shows and movies, importing, organizing and browsing new music and several gaming related workloads. If the target system is not capable of running DirectX 10 workloads then those tests are skipped. At the end of the benchmark run the system is given an Entertainment test score.

Futuremark only recently introduced its PCMark 7 suite, the successor to PCMark Vantage. As time goes on, we'll have a bigger sampling of scores to compare systems with, but in the meantime, we've pull together what we have compiled thus far, for you here...

If ever there was a "Poster Child" for the benefits of SSDs, especially in notebook platforms, it would have to be the Zenbook UX21. See that graph up there?  That's a 2.4lb ultralight laying to waste a $4000 desktop replacement notebook.  Though the Alienware M18x would obliterate the Zenbook in a gaming scenario, PCMark 7 is a general purpose computing, business application and multimedia performance test.  Here, the Zenbook UX21's 6Gbps SATA SSD rips through the benchmark like a hot knife through butter.  Its processor isn't waiting around for data requests to be delivered from the storage subsystem in the machine.  It's just punching out workload and leaving lesser-equipped notebooks behind.

The M18x has a standard 7200RPM 750GB hard drive inside.  If you were to drop an SSD into the M18x , since it's also an Intel 6 series chipset machine (Sandy Bridge-based) with SATA 6Gbps support, it would be a different picture.  Nevertheless, this test illustrates just now much of an impact an SSD can have on overall general performance.

Futuremark PCMark Vantage
Simulated General Desktop Performance
Next up, we ran our test systems through Futuremark’s previous generation total-system performance evaluation tool, PCMark Vantage. PCMark Vantage runs through a host of different usage scenarios to simulate different types of workloads including High Definition TV and movie playback and manipulation, gaming, image editing and manipulation, music compression, communications, and productivity.  Since we have a large database of scores for this test, we felt it would be good to give you additional reference points to compare to.

We left the M18x in this comparison chart, just for giggles, so you could draw the same reference point as our PCMark 7 test.  The picture doesn't change much.  Game, set, match - Zenbook.

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