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Athlon X2 4850e processor - 2.5GHz, 65nm, 45W, AM2+
Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition processor - 2.8GHz, 45nm, 95W,
Cooling Alpine 64 CPU cooler
XMS2 memory 1GB, DDR2-800
- Western Digital Scorpio
Blue notebook hard drive - 500 GB, 5400RPM, 8MB cache
BC-1205PT Blu-ray drive - SATA
SS-400ET ATX power supply
Windows Vista SP1 operating system - Home Premium, 32-bit
Catalyst 9.5 graphics driver
Measurement and Analysis Tools
to monitor CPU frequency and voltage.
processor stress software.
processor stress software.
artifact scanner to stress the integrated GPU.
stability test to stress the integrated GPU.
PowerDVD to play video.
to monitor temperature and fan speeds.
Power Angel AC power meter, used to measure the power consumption
of the system.
- Custom-built, four-channel variable DC power supply, used to regulate
the CPU fan speed.
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.
We also test platform's proficiency at playing back high definition videos.
Standard Blu-ray movies can be encoded in three different codecs by design:
MPEG-2, H.264/AVC and VC-1. MPEG-2 has been around for a number of years and
is not demanding on modern system resources. H.264 and VC-1 encoded videos on
the other hand, due to the amount of complexity in their compression schemes,
are extremely stressful and will not play smoothly (or at all) on slower PCs,
especially with antiquated video subsystems.
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.
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
Video Test Suite
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