The Computer Blog

Monday, May 26, 2008

The Cinebench Runs - Four Macs Compared

As I promised, I spent some time running Cinebench 10 against most of the Macs in my house. The machines represented here are: (1) a 3.06 GHz with the ATI Radeon 2600HD GPU; (2) a 2.66 GHz dual-core, dual-processor Xeon Mac Pro with a NVIDIA GeForce 7300GT GPU; (3) a 2.33 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo Mac Book Pro with the ATI Radeon X1600 GPU; and (4) a 2.0 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo iMac with a Radeon 2400 HD GPU.

There really were no surprises.

First, if you look at the “Single CPU Rendering” results, you can see that the machines line up according to clock speed, which is what you would expect. The 2.0 GHz iMac is the slowest while the 3.06 GHz iMac is the fastest.

Secondly, you can see the effect of both clock speed increases and the number of cores in the “Multiple CPU Rendering” results. Even the fastest dual core machine, the 3.06GHz iMac, cannot make up for the processing power gained by going to a dual core, dual processor set-up that is slightly slower in pure clock speed.

I think the most interesting chart, though, is the last one. This is measuring pixel shading using Open GL functions. Notice that all the ATI chipsets outscore the NVIDIA GPU. (The MacPro has the NVIDIA GeForce 7300GT video card.) I'm really interested in seeing what happens to its scores when the Mac Pro gets its Radeon 3870 HD video card within the next few weeks.

Keep the NVIDIA's weakness in mind as we take a look at some iLife benchmarks I’ll be posting over the next few days.


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