Benchmarking Performance: CPU Encoding Tests

One of the interesting elements on modern processors is encoding performance. This includes encryption/decryption, as well as video transcoding from one video format to another. In the encrypt/decrypt scenario, this remains pertinent to on-the-fly encryption of sensitive data - a process by which more modern devices are leaning to for software security. Video transcoding as a tool to adjust the quality, file size and resolution of a video file has boomed in recent years, such as providing the optimum video for devices before consumption, or for game streamers who are wanting to upload the output from their video camera in real-time. As we move into live 3D video, this task will only get more strenuous, and it turns out that the performance of certain algorithms is a function of the input/output of the content.

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

7-Zip 9.2: link

One of the freeware compression tools that offers good scaling performance between processors is 7-Zip. It runs under an open-source licence, is fast, and easy to use tool for power users. We run the benchmark mode via the command line for four loops and take the output score.

Encoding: 7-Zip Compression

Encoding: 7-Zip Decompression

Encoding: 7-Zip Combined Score

7-zip gives two contrasting stories here. For compression, full cores are needed to get the best performance, with frequency helping as well. However, for decompression, the extra threads help a lot. The combined result looks more like the decompression score, with the Ryzen 5 2400G sitting between the six-core Core i5-8400 and the quad-core Core i3-8350K.

WinRAR 5.40: link

For the 2017 test suite, we move to the latest version of WinRAR in our compression test. WinRAR in some quarters is more user friendly that 7-Zip, hence its inclusion. Rather than use a benchmark mode as we did with 7-Zip, here we take a set of files representative of a generic stack (33 video files in 1.37 GB, 2834 smaller website files in 370 folders in 150 MB) of compressible and incompressible formats. The results shown are the time taken to encode the file. Due to DRAM caching, we run the test 10 times and take the average of the last five runs when the benchmark is in a steady state.

Encoding: WinRAR 5.40

WinRAR is a good scaler with cores, frequency, and memory performance. The eight threads and DDR4-2933 contributes a good amount to the performance here, especially in light of where AMD was. The jump from the Ryzen 5 1400 to the 2400G is also noticable, due to the uptick in frequency and memory speed. The high single-thread performance of the Intel cores still wins out, however.

AES Encoding

Algorithms using AES coding have spread far and wide as a ubiquitous tool for encryption. Again, this is another CPU limited test, and modern CPUs have special AES pathways to accelerate their performance. We often see scaling in both frequency and cores with this benchmark. We use the latest version of TrueCrypt and run its benchmark mode over 1GB of in-DRAM data. Results shown are the GB/s average of encryption and decryption.

Encoding: AES

HandBrake v1.0.2 H264 and HEVC: link

As mentioned above, video transcoding (both encode and decode) is a hot topic in performance metrics as more and more content is being created. First consideration is the standard in which the video is encoded, which can be lossless or lossy, trade performance for file-size, trade quality for file-size, or all of the above can increase encoding rates to help accelerate decoding rates. Alongside Google's favorite codec, VP9, there are two others that are taking hold: H264, the older codec, is practically everywhere and is designed to be optimized for 1080p video, and HEVC (or H265) that is aimed to provide the same quality as H264 but at a lower file-size (or better quality for the same size). HEVC is important as 4K is streamed over the air, meaning less bits need to be transferred for the same quality content.

Handbrake is a favored tool for transcoding, and so our test regime takes care of three areas.

Low Quality/Resolution H264: Here we transcode a 640x266 H264 rip of a 2 hour film, and change the encoding from Main profile to High profile, using the very-fast preset.

Encoding: Handbrake H264 (LQ)

High Quality/Resolution H264: A similar test, but this time we take a ten-minute double 4K (3840x4320) file running at 60 Hz and transcode from Main to High, using the very-fast preset.

Encoding: Handbrake H264 (HQ)

HEVC Test: Using the same video in HQ, we change the resolution and codec of the original video from 4K60 in H264 into 4K60 HEVC.

Encoding: Handbrake HEVC (4K)

Benchmarking Performance: CPU Web Tests Benchmarking Performance: CPU Office Tests
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  • coolhardware - Monday, February 12, 2018 - link

    I have been holding on to my Intel 2500K desktop for what seems like forever. It has been a trusty companion but with a TDP of 95W and a dedicated GPU pulling 100W+ I'm looking for something a little less power hungry. AMD seems to have what I've been looking for and the price is right :-)

    Amazon has the 2400G in stock, http://amzn.to/2BVzSSn and I think I'm going to bite the bullet!

    PS does anybody have a mobo recommendation for pairing with the 2400G? (stability is my main concern, probably won't OC since the 2400G should be a nice step up from my 2500K)
    Reply
  • zaza - Monday, February 12, 2018 - link

    if already have a decent GPU it is better to get the Ryzen 1600 instead. it is only 10 or 20$ more but you will get two extra and 8 extra PCIe lanes. These APU only make sense as a placeholder to get something better, for example building a working PC, then add a dedicated GPU later. Reply
  • haukionkannel - Monday, February 12, 2018 - link

    Or this will get you very good office computer, without ever needing external GPU... Reply
  • forgerone - Tuesday, February 13, 2018 - link

    EXACTLY!!! This is the market for Ryzen with Vega. Business PC's and Laptops and also economy gaming for the markets that can not afford discrete GPU AIB. Reply
  • coolhardware - Monday, February 12, 2018 - link

    Cool, thanks for the tip! How is discrete non-gaming (desktop, Photoshop) GPU power usage these days? I live off the grid and so energy efficiency is a big plus. I do not game much so (SC2 and some lower end Steam games).

    Also, any suggestions for motherboards for 1600 or 2400G? Again, stability is top criteria for me.

    Last question, what's the max number of video outputs for the 2400G? Thx!
    Reply
  • coolhardware - Monday, February 12, 2018 - link

    PS I currently have a GTX 960. It does look like a step down versus the 2400G, as ~1030 (similar benchs to 2400G) is quite a bit lower speed than a 960:
    http://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-GTX-96...
    Reply
  • Cellar Door - Monday, February 12, 2018 - link

    The 960 is 2-3x the performance of this. Reply
  • Samus - Monday, February 12, 2018 - link

    GTX960 is a $200+ GPU. It's substantially faster than any integrated graphics and probably will be for the next few years. Reply
  • msroadkill612 - Tuesday, February 13, 2018 - link

    " I live off the grid and so energy efficiency is a big plus." - apuS are exactly what you should be using. Reply
  • WorldWithoutMadness - Monday, February 12, 2018 - link

    then might as well wait for ryzen+ version.

    Seriously AMD need to release something akin to NUC using the Raven Ridge. They can rake quite a lot of market with that. I will change my office's PCs with those, better GPU and comparable CPU.
    Reply

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