Visual Studio Compile

Our compile test is back and better than ever. With a much larger and faster SSD (Samsung SSD 830, 512GB), we're able to get more consistent compile times between runs. We're now using Visual Studio 2012 to compile Mozilla's Firefox project. The compile is multithreaded however there are periods of serial operation where performance is bound by the speed of a single core. The end result is a benchmark that stresses both single and multithreaded performance. Compile times are reported in minutes elapsed.

Windows 8 - Visual Studio 2012 - Firefox Compile

It's clear that IVB-E holds the advantage over Haswell when faced with heavily threaded workloads, but what about those workloads that are a good mix of both light and heavily threaded tasks? A medium-threaded workload if you will. It turns out our Firefox compile test is just that. Haswell's architectural improvements seem to do wonders for this test (under OS X as well), giving the 4770K a 16% lower compile time than Ivy Bridge. IVB-E on the other hand throws more cores at the problem, effectively equaling Haswell's performance but not exceeding it. In this case, if the rest of your applications are better threaded/demand more cores then IVB-E is the right solution for you. If, however, building Visual Studio projects is the most thread heavy thing you do then Haswell is a better option.

Photoshop

To measure performance under Photoshop CS4 we turn to the Retouch Artists’ Speed Test. The test does basic photo editing; there are a couple of color space conversions, many layer creations, color curve adjustment, image and canvas size adjustment, unsharp mask, and finally a gaussian blur performed on the entire image.

Time is reported in seconds and the lower numbers mean better performance. The test is multithreaded.

Adobe Photoshop CS4 - Retouch Artists Speed Test

Our Photoshop test provides another example of an application with both lightly and heavily threaded behaviors. In this case, our Photoshop test favors the latter as the 4960X manages a 13% performance advantage over the 4770K. Once again the IVB-E advantage over SNB-E is around 5%.

File Compression/Decompression

The 7-zip benchmark is a CPU bound multithreaded integer workload that looks at 7-zip compression/decompression algorithms where the IO subsystem is removed from the equation:

7-zip Benchmark

In its biggest advantage so far, the 4960X outperforms the 4770K by 56% in the 7-zip test. The IVB-E performance advantage compared to SNB-E shrinks to under 3% here. Heavily threaded integer workloads are also well suited for AMD's FX architecture. Here the FX-8350 is able to equal Haswell's performance.

Next up is our old Par2 test. Par2 is an application used for reconstructing downloaded archives. It can generate parity data from a given archive and later use it to recover the archive. Chuchusoft took the source code of par2cmdline 0.4 and parallelized it using Intel’s Threading Building Blocks 2.1. The result is a version of par2cmdline that can spawn multiple threads to repair par2 archives. For this test we took a 708MB archive, corrupted nearly 60MB of it, and used the multithreaded par2cmdline to recover it. The scores reported are the repair and recover time in seconds.

Par2 - Multi-Threaded par2cmdline 0.4

Here's another heavily threaded workload that does very well on the 4960X. We also see a rare situation where IVB-E increases performance over SNB-E by more than 10%.

Excel - Heavy Math

In our final CPU centric test we're running a monte carlo simulation on a large Excel spreadsheet. The process is well threaded.

Microsoft Excel 2007 SP1 - Monte Carlo Simulation

With 50% more cores, the 4960X delivers 33% better performance than the 4770K. If running multithreaded math workloads is up your alley, there's no alternative to the 6-core extreme edition parts.

Video Transcoding & 3D Rendering Performance Gaming Performance
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  • ShieTar - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Or Starcraft 2? Reply
  • JarredWalton - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Hahahaha.... best 1.5 core benchmark around! Reply
  • althaz - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    It sure does murder one core though. Reply
  • BrightCandle - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    or Arma 3.
    There are games out there that can utilise more cores and yet you didn't test with any of them.
    Reply
  • bds71 - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    as someone who regularly does encoding, 4k gaming, and (when not in use otherwise) folding@home - all things which can fully leverage mult-core processors and powerfull GPUs - i look forward to these reviews of new enthusiast class processors. and, it saddens me that since SB-E there have been only marginal improvements in this sector. i never thought we (as a technology power-house, and as a society) would settle for this. for me, it all began when they started putting GPUs on-die with CPUs for desktop PCs (sure, for laptops i can certainly understand) - i mean who DOESN'T use a discreet GPU in a desktop system???? and for those who do, why don't you just get a laptop???

    GPUs on-die took the focus away from the CPU. and, while there are minimal gains to be had, the showing here today is abysmal. 2 yrs of waiting and we get a 5% increase (for what i do, i want power and could really care less about power draw - as i would say most enthusiasts do). i get it - to build more powerful hardware, it HAS to become more efficient, but it's an evolutionary development process. haswell could very easily be an enthusiast class product: get rid of the rediculous GPU (for the desktop), double the core count, and raise the TDP to 125/130 (haswell-E?) - and they could do it a LOT earlier than 1-2 years from now. come on Intel - stop screwing the guys who you built your reputation on (after all, it's always the fastest/most powerfull hardware that's shown in reviews to boost the reputation of any company).

    /rant off/ sorry, this is just very dissapointing.
    Reply
  • f0d - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    i agree very disappointing
    too much integration and not enough performance is the problem with modern intel cpus
    i dont want integrated graphics and vrm's and whatever else they plan on integrating - i want huge core counts in a single die for the enthusiast platform.!
    Reply
  • jabber - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    I think what folks forget is -

    Just how many of these chips does Intel actually sell a year?

    I bet it's tiny. I bet the i3/i5 chips outsell them 50 to 1. Thats why stuff isn't happening at the top so much. The demand has dwindled. Ten years ago a lot of people could eat all the cpu power they could get their hands on. Now? Not so much. Plenty people now still happy with their 2008/9 spec quads. Basically these top end Intel i7 chips are the Mercedes S class. A way for Intel to put new stuff and techniques in, that may or may not filter down in the future generations.

    Intel knows the figures and it knows that the action is at the other end of the spectrum. Not for folks that largely want to rip video and run benchmarks all day.
    Reply
  • f0d - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    i agree they dont sell as many as the lower end cpu's but why not just sell us an unlocked xeon than can also OC?

    its not like they would lose money from letting us OC the xeon because the people that would normally buy a xeon for servers etc would never think about overclocking them

    then its a win/win situation for intel as they are still getting their xeon money and they will have a decent enthusiast cpu also
    and yes i would happily pay 1k (the price i can find current SBE 8 core cpu's) for an OCable 8 core
    Reply
  • jabber - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Indeed and in being happy to pay $1000 for a CPU that puts you in a very very small group.

    Times are tough. Sell low and sell many.
    Reply
  • Kevin G - Wednesday, September 04, 2013 - link

    I believe the only way to get a specially binned or configured chip from Intel is to be an OEM and order a large volume. For an unlocked Xeon, the only chance Intel would release such a system would be under contract for a super computer contract that also used liquid cooling.

    OEM's like HP, Dell and Apple can also acquire specifically binned chips for a premium if the OEM wants something better or for a discount if Intel has excess inventories of low grade chips they need to sell.
    Reply

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