Asus M4A78T-E AM3 motherboard

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TEST METHODOLOGY

Test Setup:


CPU-Z screenshot: Phenom II X3 720.

Measurement and Analysis Tools

Benchmark Test Details

  • Eset NOD32: In-depth virus scan of a folder containing 32 files of varying size with many of them being file RAR and ZIP archives.
  • WinRAR: Archive creation with a folder containing 68 files of varying size (less than 50MB).
  • iTunes: Conversion of an MP3 file to AAC.
  • TMPGEnc Xpress: Encoding a 1-minute long XVID AVI file to VC-1 (1280x720, 30fps, 20mbps).

Our main test procedure is designed to determine the overall system power consumption at various states (measured using a Seasonic Power Angel). To stress Intel Pentium E/Core 2 CPUs we use Prime95 (large FFTs setting) to maximize heat and power consumption. For AMD X2 CPUs we use CPUBurn K7 as it seems to tax AMD processors more. To stress the IGP, we use ATITool artifact scanner, ATITool 3DView, or FurMark, whichever application is found to be more power hungry.

Our main video test suite features a variety of 1080p H.264/VC-1 encoded clips. The clips are played with PowerDVD and a CPU usage graph is created by the Windows Task Manger for analysis to determine the approximate mean CPU usage. High CPU usage is indicative of poor video decoding ability on the part of the integrated graphics subsystem. If the video (and/or audio) skips or freezes, we conclude the board's IGP (in conjunction with the processor) is adequate to decompress the clip properly.

We also performed a short series of benchmarks featuring real-world timed tests and synthetics. Power consumption was monitored to determine overall energy efficiency.

Cool'n'Quiet was enabled (unless otherwise noted). The following features/services were disabled during testing to prevent spikes in CPU/HDD usage that are typical of fresh Vista installations:

  • Windows Sidebar
  • Indexing
  • Superfetch

Video Test Suite


1080p | 24fps | ~10mbps
H.264: Rush Hour 3 Trailer 1 is a H.264 encoded clip inside an Apple Quicktime container.


1080p | 24fps | ~8mbps
WMV-HD: Coral Reef Adventure Trailer is encoded in VC-1 using the WMV3 codec commonly recognized by the "WMV-HD" moniker.


1080p | 24fps | ~19mbps
VC-1: Drag Race is a recording of a scene from network television re-encoded with TMPGEnc using the WVC1 codec, a more demanding VC-1 codec.


1080p | 24fps | ~33mbps
Blu-ray: Disturbia is a short section of the Blu-ray version of Disturbia, the motion picture, played directly off the Blu-ray disc. It is encoded with H.264/AVC.



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