next test, we took some Quake 3 Arena v1.32 Time Demo
(demo four) scores at a resolution of 640X480, using
16-bit color and textures. Running Quake 3 with
a high-end graphics card at this low resolution
isolates motherboard and processor performance.
Frame rates are limited by the number of polygons the
CPU is able to push through the bus, without being
limited by the graphics subsystem.
Benchmarks with the
Iwill XP4-G Mini-PC
OpenGL Gaming Tests
As you can
see, only 4.7 frames per second separate the Iwill
XP4-G and Abit IT7-Max2, a difference of only 1.9%.
Please keep in mind that performance deltas this
small, at these performance levels, mean basically
nothing. Although physically the XP4-G and
IT7-Max2 don't have very much in common, performance
wise, they're essentially identical.
"Real World" Application
We All Have to Work Sometime!
we have some "Real World" application tests using ZD
Labs' Business Winstone 2002 and Content Creation
Winstone 2002 benchmarks. We'll directly quote
ZD's eTestingLabs website for an explanation as to how
Business Winstone 2002 benchmark derives its score.
Content Creation Winstone 2002 uses the same process
to generate its score, but different applications are
used throughout the benchmark...
"Business Winstone is a system-level,
application-based benchmark that measures a PC's
overall performance when running today's top-selling
Windows-based 32-bit applications on Windows 98,
Windows 2000 (SP2 or later), Windows Me, or Windows
XP. Business Winstone doesn't mimic what these
packages do; it runs real applications through a
series of scripted activities and uses the time a PC
takes to complete those activities to produce its
Five Microsoft Office 2002 applications
(Access, Excel, FrontPage, PowerPoint, and
Microsoft Project 2000
Adobe Photoshop 6.0.1
Adobe Premiere 6.0
Macromedia Director 8.5
Macromedia Dreamweaver UltraDev 4
Microsoft Windows Media Encoder 7.01.00.3055
Netscape Navigator 6/6.01
Sonic Foundry Sound Forge 5.0c (build 184)
We had a
similar situation In the Business and Content Creation
Winstone tests, where the IT7-Max2 once again barely
nudged ahead of the XP4-G. In the Business
Winstone test, the Abit board outperformed the XP4-G
by roughly 2% and in the Content Creation Winstone
test the IT7-Max2 pulled ahead by less a 1%.
When all was said and done, the IT7-Max2 beat the
XP4-G in all of the benchmarks we ran, but none of the
performance deltas were large enough to be considered
meaningful. As we mentioned earlier, the XP4-G
was clocked conservatively at default settings.
The Abit board was clocked slightly higher when left
at default settings, 2.41GHz vs. 2.39GHz on the XP4-G.
To some extent, this small clock speed difference
accounts for the paltry performance deltas seen here.
COMPLETED XP4-G WITH DRIVE PAINTED TO MATCH
we think Iwill did a good job with the XP4-G.
The enclosure is very attractive and we feel Iwill
struck a good balance between features and
expandability. With only an AGP slot, no
external 3.5" drive bay and no Firewire, some of
Shuttle's small form factor PCs are more feature rich
than the XP4-G, but they are also more expensive.
As of this writing, you can find the XP4-G for
approximately $200 US at some on-line retailers.
Shuttle's SS51G is similarly priced, but the SS51G
uses a SiS chipset, and all things considered, we'd
gladly trade some features for the stability and
compatibility of an Intel chipset. The Shuttle
SB51G on the other hand, is powered by an Intel
chipset, but it is priced about $75 more than the
XP4-G. If Firewire isn't important to you, and
the on-board sound is adequate, you could save a nice
chunk of change by going with Iwill's product.
Users looking for a solid mini-PC for LAN gaming or to
use a secondary system would be well served by the
Iwill XP4-G. We're sure more higher-performing,
Springdale based mini-PCs like Shuttle's
SB61G2, are in the works as well, but they will be
even more expensive, further distancing themselves
from the XP4-G's price point. Based on its
"desktop class" performance, attractive enclosure and
excellent price, we're giving the Iwill XP4-G a
HotHardware Heat Meter rating of
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