Benchmarking Performance: CPU Rendering Tests

Rendering tests are a long-time favorite of reviewers and benchmarkers, as the code used by rendering packages is usually highly optimized to squeeze every little bit of performance out. Sometimes rendering programs end up being heavily memory dependent as well - when you have that many threads flying about with a ton of data, having low latency memory can be key to everything. Here we take a few of the usual rendering packages under Windows 10, as well as a few new interesting benchmarks.

All of our benchmark results can also be found in our benchmark engine, Bench.

Corona 1.3: link

Corona is a standalone package designed to assist software like 3ds Max and Maya with photorealism via ray tracing. It's simple - shoot rays, get pixels. OK, it's more complicated than that, but the benchmark renders a fixed scene six times and offers results in terms of time and rays per second. The official benchmark tables list user submitted results in terms of time, however I feel rays per second is a better metric (in general, scores where higher is better seem to be easier to explain anyway). Corona likes to pile on the threads, so the results end up being very staggered based on thread count.

Rendering: Corona Photorealism

Blender 2.78: link

For a render that has been around for what seems like ages, Blender is still a highly popular tool. We managed to wrap up a standard workload into the February 5 nightly build of Blender and measure the time it takes to render the first frame of the scene. Being one of the bigger open source tools out there, it means both AMD and Intel work actively to help improve the codebase, for better or for worse on their own/each other's microarchitecture.

Rendering: Blender 2.78

LuxMark v3.1: Link

As a synthetic, LuxMark might come across as somewhat arbitrary as a renderer, given that it's mainly used to test GPUs, but it does offer both an OpenCL and a standard C++ mode. In this instance, aside from seeing the comparison in each coding mode for cores and IPC, we also get to see the difference in performance moving from a C++ based code-stack to an OpenCL one with a CPU as the main host.

Rendering: LuxMark CPU C++Rendering: LuxMark CPU OpenCL

POV-Ray 3.7.1b4: link

Another regular benchmark in most suites, POV-Ray is another ray-tracer but has been around for many years. It just so happens that during the run up to AMD's Ryzen launch, the code base started to get active again with developers making changes to the code and pushing out updates. Our version and benchmarking started just before that was happening, but given time we will see where the POV-Ray code ends up and adjust in due course.

Rendering: POV-Ray 3.7

Cinebench R15: link

The latest version of CineBench has also become one of those 'used everywhere' benchmarks, particularly as an indicator of single thread performance. High IPC and high frequency gives performance in ST, whereas having good scaling and many cores is where the MT test wins out.

Rendering: CineBench 15 SingleThreadedRendering: CineBench 15 MultiThreaded

Benchmarking Performance: CPU System Tests Benchmarking Performance: CPU Web Tests


View All Comments

  • dave_the_nerd - Thursday, July 27, 2017 - link

    Yes, obviously. That would be terrible. Reply
  • Oxford Guy - Thursday, July 27, 2017 - link

    I'm glad you're not a tech reviewer. You could just say "Obviously" for every technical detail and that would be your article. Reply
  • Gothmoth - Thursday, July 27, 2017 - link

    you can overclock the cheap AMD cpus... what about the intels?

    i am to lazy to check but are the testets intels k models? i guess not.
  • ddhelmet - Friday, July 28, 2017 - link

    One thing I am really curious about is Citra performance. It would be an important test for single thread performance. All about that IPC. Reply
  • serendip - Friday, July 28, 2017 - link

    Sorry but I don't see the point of these chips. An i3 is supposed to be a cheap do-everything CPU for basic business and school PCs. The Ryzen 3 not having a GPU really hurts its chances in those segments and it probably won't get picked up by OEMs. AMD needs mass market sales right now and Ryzen APUs can't come soon enough.

    I'm also wondering if yields are good enough that Ryzen 7s are the main chips being produced, with few 5s and 3s left over from the 7s that didn't meet spec.
  • Outlander_04 - Saturday, July 29, 2017 - link

    The core count of the Ryzen chips is going to be a significant advantage over any dual core .

    Adding a basic graphics card will cost about $30 . For that you free up system RAM that the onboard would otherwise be using, and you get decent drivers that let you make some adjustments that intel removed when they dumbed down their drivers a few years back
  • serendip - Saturday, July 29, 2017 - link

    Yeah but most office tasks run fine on 2 cores. Most users probably won't even notice they're using quad core processor.

    That $30 extra is a lot when it comes to speccing thousands of machines. A cheap discrete GPU is also another potential point of failure that large enterprises might not want on a big rollout. I understand the enthusiast reasoning for a cheap but powerful CPU like the Ryzen 3 paired with a decent midrange card, but this setup doesn't make sense for large corporate orders. AMD needs to sell lots of chips to large clients to survive.
  • Outlander_04 - Saturday, July 29, 2017 - link

    It's not just the "Office tasks". Its the network services, antivirus and updating that goes on in what should be the background, but is not when you have a dual-core. I speak from experience. The HP desktops we have at work can be frustrating. Reply
  • buxe2quec - Friday, July 28, 2017 - link

    Posting a review with placeholders for the benchmarks is definitely not professional.
    Delay it two days and post it in full, or split it in two reviews.
    Looks like clickbaiting...
  • supdawgwtfd - Friday, July 28, 2017 - link

    Ian. Your a shill. Or you just completely biased.

    Every single other review i have read has said the Ryzen 3 it the better option. In price and performance.

    WTF has happened to Anandtech? Why are you guys spewing BS? Why can't you be unbiased?


    Have been reading the site for almost 20 years. I think i will now have to officially NOT come here again...

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now