Intel Core 2 Quad Q8400 CPU Review

Article Index

Test Setup & SANDRA

How We Configured Our Test Systems: When configuring our test systems for this article, we first entered their respective system BIOSes and set each board to its "Optimized" or "High performance Defaults". We then saved the settings, re-entered the BIOS and set memory timings for either DDR2-1066 with 5,5,5,15 timings or DDR3-1333 with 7,7,7,20 timings. The hard drives were then formatted, and Windows Vista Ultimate was installed. When the Windows installation was complete, we updated the OS, and installed the drivers necessary for our components. Auto-Updating and Windows Defender were then disabled and we installed all of our benchmarking software, defragged the hard drives, and ran all of the tests.

 HotHardware's Test Systems
 Intel and AMD - Head To Head 

System 1: 
AMD Athlon II X2 250
(3.0GHz Dual-Core)
AMD Phenom II X2 550
(3.1GHz Dual-Core)

AMD Phenom II X4 810
(2.60GHz Quad-Core)
AMD Phenom II X3 720BE
(2.8GHz Tri-Core)

AMD Phenom II X4 920
(2.8GHz Quad-Core)


Asus M4A79T Deluxe
(AMD 790FX Chipset)

2x2GB Corsair DDR3-1600

CL 7-7-7-20 - DDR3-1333

GeForce GTX 280
On-Board Ethernet
On-board Audio

WD150 "Raptor" HD
10,000 RPM SATA

Windows Vista Ultimate
NVIDIA Forceware v180.43

System 2: 
Core 2 Quad Q8400
(2.66GHz - Quad-Core)
Core 2 Quad Q9400
(2.66GHz - Quad-Core)

Core 2 Duo E6850
(3.0GHz - Dual-Core)


Asus Rampage Extreme
(X48 Express Chipset)

4GB Corsair DDR3-1600
CL 7-7-7-20 - DDR3-1333

GeForce GTX 280
On-Board Ethernet
On-board Audio

WD150 "Raptor" HD
10,000 RPM SATA

Windows Vista Ultimate
NVIDIA Forceware v180.43

 

 Preliminary Testing with SiSoft SANDRA 2009
 Synthetic Benchmarks

We began our testing with SiSoftware's SANDRA XII, the System ANalyzer, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant. We ran four of the built-in subsystem tests that partially comprise the SANDRA 2009 suite with Intel's Core 2 Quad Q8400 processor (CPU Arithmetic, CPU Multimedia, Memory Bandwidth, and Cache and Memory).  All of the scores reported below were taken with the processor running at its default clock speed of 2.66GHz with 4GB of DDR3-1333 memory.

 
Core 2 Quad Q8400 @ 2.66GHz
CPU Arithmetic
 

  
Core 2 Quad Q8400 @ 2.66GHz
Multimedia
 

  
Core 2 Quad Q8400 @ 2.66GHz
Mem. Bandwidth: 
DDR3-1333
 

  
Core 2 Quad Q8400 @ 2.66GHz
Cache and Mem. Bandwidth
 

The Q8400 performed as expected in the SANDRA processor arithmetic and multimedia benchmarks. Our results were very close to SANDRA's Q9450 reference numbers and the chip was outperformed by faster Intel quad-core processors. The memory bandwidth test shows the performance gap between the X48 chipset versus current AMD chipsets, where the on-die memory controller of the AMD platform has the advantage. Of course, Intel saw the discrepancy and integrated the memory controller into the Core i7 processor family. 


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