WME9 & SPECviewperf v7.1.1
We continued our testing with a video encoding benchmark using Windows Media Encoder 9. In this test, we took a 416MB Digital Video file and encoded to WMV9 format. Run times were recorded in Minutes : Seconds, with lower times again indicating better performance.
Here the game is all Intel, with even the 3.4GHz Northwood P4, which is obviously no shrinking violet, taking the lead over the two high end Athlon 64s. We also see a distinct advantage for the i925X and i915X chipset based systems, in this test as well, as comparable 3.4GHz EE/i875 numbers fall in behind by a few seconds. Overall system bandwidth is what drives higher scores in WME9 and clearly the fastest clock speed money can buy doesn't hurt either.
For a Professional Workstation perspective, we used the "industrial strength" 3D rendering benchmark, SPECViewperf v7.1.1. SPECviewperf v7.1.1 draws its performance metrics on many different data-points using several different OpenGL based applications from various ISVs (Independent Software Vendors). The SPECopc (SPEC OpenGL Performance Characterization) project group is comprised of companies like 3DLabs, Intel, AMD, NVIDIA, ATi, Dell, IBM, SGI and Sun Micro, among others. They help define and endorse what application viewsets are used in the SPECviewperf benchmark. Currently, there are six standard SPECopc application viewsets: (courtesy of SPEC.org)
- 3dsmax-02, based on SPECapc for 3ds max 3.1 configured with the Open GL driver, includes three models containing an average of 1.5 million vertices each, and tests performance of scenes with different levels of lighting.
- dx-08, based on IBM's Data Explorer application, has 10 different tests.
- drv-09, based on Intergraph's DesignReview model review package, has five different tests.
- light-06, based on Discreet's Lightscape radiosity application, has four tests.
- proe-02, based on SPECapc for Pro/ENGINEER 2001, measures two models in three modes - shaded, wireframe and hidden-line removal (HLR).
- ugs-03, based on SPECapc for Unigraphics V17, tests performance based on an engine model containing 2.1 million vertices.
With the exception of the Design Review test (drv-09), Spec Viewperf is generally dominated by the Intel processors. Furthermore Prescott and P4 560 CPUs, as well as i915 and i925X chipset based systems, seem to excel a bit beyond P4 EE and Northwood driven i875 based test-beds. This could very well be the first frontier for Intel's new Processor core and PCI Express based chipset architecture. Workstation graphics and analysis packages seem to favor all of Intel's recent innovations.