PCMark Vantage (Continued)
We continue our test coverage with a few more modules from the comprehensive PCMark Vantage suite of benchmarks.
Vantage Music suite includes the following tests:
Music 1 - Three simultaneous threads, Web page rendering – w/ music shop content, Audio transcoding: WAV -> WMA lossless, HDD: Adding music to Windows Media Player
Music 2 - Audio transcoding: WAV -> WMA lossless
Music 3 - Audio transcoding: MP3 -> WMA
Music 4 - Two simultaneous threads, Audio transcoding: WMA -> WMA, HDD: Adding music to Windows Media Player
The Skulltrail system faultered in Vantage's Music benchmark module, presumably due to the platform's memory bandwidth disadvantage versus the DDR3 equipped Core 2 Extreme QX9770.
Vantage Communications suite includes the following tests:
Communications 1 - Three simultaneous threads, Data encryption: CNG AES CBC, Data compression, Web page rendering: graphics content, 1024x768, windowed
Communications 2 - Three simultaneous threads. Web page rendering: open various news pages from IE 7 Favorites in separate tabs, close them one by one, Data decryption: CNG AES CBC, HDD: Windows Defender
Communications 3 - Windows Mail: Search
Communications 4 - Two simultaneous threads, Data encryption: CNG AES CBC, Audio transcoding: WMA -> WMA - to simulate VOIP
PCMark Vantage's Communication test suite proved to be somewhat of a strong point for the Skulltrail system. In this test, the Skulltrail system finished over 150 points ahead of the next fastest system.
Vantage Productivity suite includes the following tests:
Productivity 1 - Two simultaneous threads, Text editing, HDD: application loading
Productivity 2 - Two simultaneous threads, Windows Contacts: search, HDD: Windows Defender
Productivity 3 - HDD: Windows Vista start-up
Productivity 4 - Three simultaneous threads, Windows Contacts: search, Windows Mail: Run Message Rules, Web page rendering: simultaneously open various pages from IE7 Favorites in separate tabs, close them one by one
PCMark Vantage's Productivity test suite reported similar scores for the QX9770 and Skulltrail system, with the Core 2 Extreme QX9650 finishing not too far behind. The moral of the PCMark Vantage story? If four or fewer threads are used, an eight core system is going to perform much like a four core system with similar clock speeds. As you'll see later, this is not the case with true multi-threaded applications.