CPU Performance: Rendering Tests

Rendering is often a key target for processor workloads, lending itself to a professional environment. It comes in different formats as well, from 3D rendering through rasterization, such as games, or by ray tracing, and invokes the ability of the software to manage meshes, textures, collisions, aliasing, physics (in animations), and discarding unnecessary work. Most renderers offer CPU code paths, while a few use GPUs and select environments use FPGAs or dedicated ASICs. For big studios however, CPUs are still the hardware of choice.

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

For our graphs, some of them have two values: a regular value in orange, and one in red called 'Intel Spec'. ASUS offers the option to 'open up' the power and current limits of the chip, so the CPU is still running at the same frequency but is not throttled. Despite Intel saying that they recommend 'Intel Spec', the system they sent to us to test was actually set up with the power limits opened up, and the results they provided for us to compare to internally also correlated with that setting. As a result, we're providing both sets results for our CPU tests.

Corona 1.3: Performance Render

An advanced performance based renderer for software such as 3ds Max and Cinema 4D, the Corona benchmark renders a generated scene as a standard under its 1.3 software version. Normally the GUI implementation of the benchmark shows the scene being built, and allows the user to upload the result as a ‘time to complete’.

We got in contact with the developer who gave us a command line version of the benchmark that does a direct output of results. Rather than reporting time, we report the average number of rays per second across six runs, as the performance scaling of a result per unit time is typically visually easier to understand.

The Corona benchmark website can be found at https://corona-renderer.com/benchmark

Corona 1.3 Benchmark

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Blender 2.79b: 3D Creation Suite

A high profile rendering tool, Blender is open-source allowing for massive amounts of configurability, and is used by a number of high-profile animation studios worldwide. The organization recently released a Blender benchmark package, a couple of weeks after we had narrowed our Blender test for our new suite, however their test can take over an hour. For our results, we run one of the sub-tests in that suite through the command line - a standard ‘bmw27’ scene in CPU only mode, and measure the time to complete the render.

Blender can be downloaded at https://www.blender.org/download/

Blender 2.79b bmw27_cpu Benchmark

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LuxMark v3.1: LuxRender via Different Code Paths

As stated at the top, there are many different ways to process rendering data: CPU, GPU, Accelerator, and others. On top of that, there are many frameworks and APIs in which to program, depending on how the software will be used. LuxMark, a benchmark developed using the LuxRender engine, offers several different scenes and APIs.


Taken from the Linux Version of LuxMark

In our test, we run the simple ‘Ball’ scene on both the C++ and OpenCL code paths, but in CPU mode. This scene starts with a rough render and slowly improves the quality over two minutes, giving a final result in what is essentially an average ‘kilorays per second’.

LuxMark v3.1 C++

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POV-Ray 3.7.1: Ray Tracing

The Persistence of Vision ray tracing engine is another well-known benchmarking tool, which was in a state of relative hibernation until AMD released its Zen processors, to which suddenly both Intel and AMD were submitting code to the main branch of the open source project. For our test, we use the built-in benchmark for all-cores, called from the command line.

POV-Ray can be downloaded from http://www.povray.org/

POV-Ray 3.7.1 Benchmark

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CPU Performance: System Tests CPU Performance: Office Tests
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  • Yorgos - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - link

    I like my comments to be vivid.
    I don't write NPC comments.
    Reply
  • Arbie - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - link

    Then you should move to somewhere like Wccftech, where you won't even have to rationalize picking fights and being gratuitously rude. People like you ruin the tone of a quality forum. Reply
  • eddman - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - link

    Being vulgar and crass isn't the same as being "vivid". If you cannot reply without resorting to name calling, then this not the place for you. Reply
  • WasHopingForAnHonestReview - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - link

    What part of his comment insulted you, snowflake? Reply
  • eddman - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - link

    I didn't say he's not right.

    None. The point is this is a tech site. There is no need for such remarks.

    "Snowflake"

    This is what I'm talking about. Randomly calling people names with no reason. You don't even know me.
    Reply
  • PeachNCream - Thursday, January 31, 2019 - link

    I've run a lot of paper and pencil RPGs over the years and I'm disappointed to say that a number of my cookie cutter NPCs had more personality than some of the player characters, but I'm one of those story first GM types. Reply
  • WasHopingForAnHonestReview - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - link

    Buzzwords or not the man is right. Reply
  • BGADK - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - link

    You have no idea what professional software costs. In the end my clients dont care if the PC costs 5000USD, 7000 USD or 12000USD.
    The difference disapear when you add the software costs and my fee.
    Reply
  • Icehawk - Thursday, January 31, 2019 - link

    Yup. At the desktop level we have things like Adobe for $1k/seat/yr.

    Our big iron costs an order of magnitude more than these machines (recent orders were $150k ea and were mid-spec HP boxes). In the end most of the costs of a big server are memory and storage (SSDs). The high heat/energy consumption of this setup would be a concern, especially if in a colo.
    Reply
  • jardows2 - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - link

    What are you rambling on about? It's a solid performing product, at a much reduced price than Intel's normal markup. I don't get where you come off thinking this is a fanboy post, and you totally missed my point - why is it limited to so few pieces? In Intel's lineup, it's a winner, and there are plenty of people in workstation markets who will only buy systems with Intel CPUs. So for Intel to make a good performing product, at a much lower than normal for Intel price, but only make a couple thousand of them? What's going on over there? Reply

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