|Acer Iconia 6120 Dual-Screen Laptop|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Notebook | Compact PC|
|Written by David Ramsey|
|Wednesday, 27 April 2011|
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Performance Testing Continued
I admit to being conflicted about PCMark Vantage: it's a widely-used and respected test suite that exercises every part of your system, but the choices Futuremark made when weighing the different system components for each test (shown below) sometimes seem a little strange. For example, note how gaming test #2 weighs hard disk performance for 100% of the score. In fact, according to PCMark Vantage the video card only impacts 23% of the total gaming score, but the CPU represents 37% of the final score. As our tests have already proven many times, gaming performance has a lot more to do with the GPU than the CPU, and especially more than the hard drive or SSD (which is worth 38% of the final gaming performance score).
TV and Movies Suite
There's no surprise here, really: the much more powerful Iconia trounces the ASUS netbook, although the latter's ION-based graphics subsystem and SSD allow it to almost equal the Iconia in the gaming suite. The Iconia's much more powerful processor dominates in the TV & Movies and Music suites.
PassMark PerformanceTest 7.0
The PassMark PerformanceTest allows you to objectively benchmark a PC using a variety of different speed tests and compare the results to other computers. PassMark comprises a complete suite of tests for your computer, including CPU tests, 2D and 3D graphics tests, disk tests, memory tests, and even tests to determine the speed of your system's optical drive. PassMark tests support Hyper-Threading and systems with multiple CPUs, and allow you to save benchmark results to disk (or to export them to HTML, text, GIF, and BMP formats).
Knowledgeable users can use the Advanced Testing section to alter the parameters for the disk, network, graphics, multitasking, and memory tests, and created individual, customized testing suites. But for this review I used only the built-in CPU, 2D graphics, and 3D graphics tests (with the graphics tests set to their defaults). PassMark computes a composite score based on the scores of the individual tests:
Again, the Iconia shows its sheer CPU muscle compared to an Atom-based system, with a score that's 4.5 times higher than the ASUS 1201N. The graphics scores seem closer visually, but the Iconia's 2D score is 3 times higher and its 3D score is 3.7 times higher. Although the graphics tests were run at their (very low) default settings, portions of the 3D graphics tests were very jerky, with frame rates below 10fps.
AIDA64 Extreme Edition Tests
AIDA64 Extreme Edition is the evolution of Lavalys' "Everest Ultimate Edition". Hungarian developer FinalWire acquired the rights to Everest in late November 2010, and renamed the product "AIDA64". The Everest product was discontinued and FinalWire is offering 1-year license keys to those with active Everest keys.
AIDA64 is a full 64-bit benchmark and test suite utilizing MMX, 3DNow! and SSE instruction set extensions, and will scale up to 32 processor cores. An enhanced 64-bit System Stability Test module is also available to stress the whole system to its limits. For legacy processors all benchmarks and the System Stability Test are available in 32-bit versions as well. Additionally, AIDA64 adds new hardware to its database, including 300 solid-state drives. On top of the usual ATA auto-detect information the new SSD database enables AIDA64 to display flash memory type, controller model, physical dimensions, and data transfer performance data. AIDA64 v1.00 also implements SSD-specific SMART disk health information for Indilinx, Intel, JMicron, Samsung, and SandForce controllers.
All of the benchmarks used in this test- Queen, Photoworxx, ZLib, hash, and AES- rely on basic x86 instructions, and consume very little system memory while also being aware of Hyper-Threading, multi-processors, and multi-core processors. Of all the tests in this review, AIDA64 is the one that best isolates the processor's performance from the rest of the system. While this is useful in that it more directly compares processor performance, readers should remember that virtually no "real world" programs will mirror these results.
And the trouncing of the ASUS EeePC 1201N is complete. The closest the Atom-powered netbook comes to the Iconia is the Queen test, where it's 48% as fast.