Pentium 4 3.2GHz w/ 800MHz System Bus

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Intel Pentium 4 3.2GHz Performance Evaluation
Another speed bump served up by Intel with ease

By, Dave Altavilla
June 23, 2003


It needs no introduction, we give you the elder statesman of the benchmark arena, Quake 3.

Quake 3 Time Demo Four
Pushing the polygons

In this time demo benchmark run, we've utilized the latest 1.32 point release of the Quake 3 engine.  We then extracted the recorded "Four" demo and installed it in our demos folder.  The graphics quality settings were set to "Fastest" in the game menu and we ran each test 3 times, taking an average score between each run we recorded.  The 3.2GHz Pentium wins this race hands down again and by a wide margin over the Athlon XP 3200+.  Again, with performance spreads like these, is it fair to call the Athlon XP 3200+ a 3.2GHz equivalent?  We'll let you ponder that while we fire up our last series of tests, on the professional side of the house, SPECviewperf 7.1.


All Pro MCAD And 3D Modeling Performance

We ran the latest SPECviewperf version 7.1 installation, along with the latest Catalyst 3.4 drivers for the Radeon 9700 Pro we used in our test beds.  Viewperf also tends to be an excellent processor test, since there are lots of vectors to calculate and models to spin.

The following tests are utilized in SPECviewperf version 7.1:

  • 3ds max (3dsmax-02)

  • Data Explorer (dx-08)

  • DesignReview (drv-09)

  • Lightscape (light-06)

  • Pro/Engineer (proe-02)

  • Unigraphics (ugs-03)

             Higher scores indicate increased performance

Viewperf utilizes OpenGL for its rendering calls and with the exception of the ugs-03 test (Unigraphics V17), there is a fair spread amongst the contenders here in the field.  The engine model in the ugs-03 is rendered in wire frame and then shaded.  As a result, the workload is largely on the graphics processor.  The rest of the test suite, as you can see, places much more emphasis on the host CPU.  Once again, the 3.2GHz Pentium 4 proves that it is the fastest Desktop Processor in existence, beating out the best AMD has to offer, in almost every test component of SPECviewperf.  We've shown you performance from a lot of different angles and any way you look at it, a 3.2GHz P4 is the fastest processor for your PC, that money can buy, at this juncture.


Less than 3 months after the release of the 3GHz Pentium 4 w/ 800MHz System Bus, Intel bins out another 200MHz like a walk in the park.  There's no question, things will get interesting when AMD lets loose with the Athlon64.  Then again, there's Prescott on the horizon in the second half and you can rest assured that processor will pack some serious pain as well.  While Intel is driving toward 4GHz and beefing up on chip resources, AMD is taking another route and a wider path yet unpaved in the Desktop Consumer market.  Industry analysts are placing their bets but let's face it, this thing is a crap shoot.  Both Intel and AMD have major league technological resources at their disposal.  It's a great match-up and we all have a ring side seat.

The new 3.2GHz P4 is roughly 7% faster than its 3GHz predecessor and 15 - 25% faster, in most applications, than an Athlon XP 3200+.  The new P4 will be priced at $637 in quantities of 1K upon its launch today.  While this is pretty steep for certain, you can't argue with the performance Intel's new flagship brings to the table.  Here's hoping street prices will subside shortly after its debut in the channel.  For now, Intel can still claim full dominance in terms of raw overall performance but as usual, it doesn't come cheap.  Here's to competition and ever shrinking die size.  90 nanometers, here we come.



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