Real-world testing allows us to see how well a product will perform when used in the same manner as it would be in your house or office. It is an important side to performance testing as it can uncover hidden glitches in the way a product performs.
It is especially true when testing a mainboard; there are so many components of a board that have to interact that any problems between parts can cause a failure of the whole.
For real-world testing we use some common applications and functions. We test with LightWave 3D for rendering performance, AutoGK for transcoding from DVD to AVI and two games for gaming testing.
Rendering of 3D Animation is a system intensive endeavor. You need a good CPU, memory and HDD speed to get good rendering times. For our testing we use LightWave 3D. This software from Newtek is an industry standard and has several pre-loaded scenes for us to use.
Version and / or Patch Used: 9.6
Developer Homepage: http://www.newtek.com
Product Homepage: http://www.newtek.com/lightwave/
Buy It Here
This is one of those times when all you can say is "wow". The new 2600K and 2500K perform very well here with LightWave and the ray tracing heavy frame we use for testing. Much of this has to do with memory and inter core efficiency. To see the 2600K only 5 seconds behind the 980X in this test is simply impressive.
Version and / or Patch Used: 2.55
Developer Homepage: http://www.autogk.me.uk/
Product Homepage: http://www.autogk.me.uk/
Download It Here
AutoGK stands for Auto Gordian Knot; it is a suite of transcoding tools that are compiled into an easy to install and use utility. It allows you to transcode non-protected DVDs and other media to Xvid or Divx format. For our testing purposes we use a non-DRM restricted movie that is roughly 2 hours in length. This is transcoded to a single Xvid AVI at 100% quality.
Once again we see the computational power (plus improved memory and inter core performance) show its head. Even without Intel's Quick Sync Video instructions running (AutoGK does not support them) we get a very nice improvement over the older CPUs in the mid-range class.
We will be diving into Quick Sync in a future article to see what we can get out of it, but for now it is nice to know that you will still get a decent performance boost with current transcoding apps from either of these two CPUs.
Adobe Lightroom 2.7 x64
Version and / or Patch Used: 2.7
Developer Homepage: http://www.adobe.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshoplightroom/?promoid=DJGSN_P_US_FP2_LR_MN&tt=P_US_FP2_LR_MN/
Buy It Here
This is a new test to TweakTown for CPUs, but it is one that we have been asked about by readers and also OEMs; using Adobe's Lightroom (or another application) to convert large RAW images to JPEG.
For our testing we converted 100 15.1 Megapixel image files (just over 2GB of data) to the JPEG format (1280x853 resolution 72DPI) and timed how long it took to complete this. This test is a good real world test as more people take high resolution images and convert them for e-mail and the web.
Once more, very nice performance here by the Core i7-2600K and Core i5-2500K. Intel has really gotten things together for a wide range of consumers.