Performance Metrics - II

In this section, we mainly look at benchmark modes in programs used on a day-to-day basis, i.e, application performance and not synthetic workloads.

x264 Benchmark

First off, we have some video encoding benchmarks courtesy of x264 HD Benchmark v5.0. This is simply a test of CPU performance. As expected, the Core i7-5557U performs much better than any other U-series CPU that we have tested so far. Thanks to its high TDP, it can sustain higher clock rates. Obviously, it is no match for the 65W TDP Core i7-4770R in the BRIX Pro.

Video Encoding - x264 5.0 - Pass 1

Video Encoding - x264 5.0 - Pass 2


7-Zip is a very effective and efficient compression program, often beating out OpenCL accelerated commercial programs in benchmarks even while using just the CPU power. 7-Zip has a benchmarking program that provides tons of details regarding the underlying CPU's efficiency. In this subsection, we are interested in the compression and decompression MIPS ratings when utilizing all the available threads.

7-Zip LZMA Compression Benchmark

7-Zip LZMA Decompression Benchmark


As businesses (and even home consumers) become more security conscious, the importance of encryption can't be overstated. CPUs supporting the AES-NI instruction for accelerating the encryption and decryption processes have, till now, been the higher end SKUs. However, with Bay Trail, even the lowly Atom series has gained support for AES-NI. The Core i7-5557U in the NUC5i7RYH does have AES-NI support. TrueCrypt, a popular open-source disk encryption program can take advantage of the AES-NI capabilities. The TrueCrypt internal benchmark provides some interesting cryptography-related numbers to ponder. In the graph below, we can get an idea of how fast a TrueCrypt volume would behave in the Intel NUC5i7RYH and how it would compare with other select PCs. This is a purely CPU feature / clock speed based test.

TrueCrypt Benchmark

Agisoft Photoscan

Agisoft PhotoScan is a commercial program that converts 2D images into 3D point maps, meshes and textures. The program designers sent us a command line version in order to evaluate the efficiency of various systems that go under our review scanner. The command line version has two benchmark modes, one using the CPU and the other using both the CPU and GPU (via OpenCL). The benchmark takes around 50 photographs and does four stages of computation:

  • Stage 1: Align Photographs
  • Stage 2: Build Point Cloud (capable of OpenCL acceleration)
  • Stage 3: Build Mesh
  • Stage 4: Build Textures

We record the time taken for each stage. Since various elements of the software are single threaded, others multithreaded, and some use GPUs, it is interesting to record the effects of CPU generations, speeds, number of cores, DRAM parameters and the GPU using this software.

Agisoft PhotoScan Benchmark - Stage 1

Agisoft PhotoScan Benchmark - Stage 2

Agisoft PhotoScan Benchmark - Stage 3

Agisoft PhotoScan Benchmark - Stage 4

Dolphin Emulator

Wrapping up our application benchmark numbers is the Dolphin Emulator benchmark mode results. This is again a test of the CPU capabilities, and the trend observed in the previous benchmarks in this section get repeated here. The Core i7-5557U is simply the highest-performing U-series CPU that we have evaluated so far.

Dolphin Emulator Benchmark

Performance Metrics - I Gaming Benchmarks
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  • Antronman - Tuesday, April 21, 2015 - link

    Since when do monitors draw power from the device they're connected to anyways?
  • eanazag - Tuesday, April 21, 2015 - link

    Same response as close.

    Additionally, you want to have a power supply that can provide more juice because over time they lose the capacity to provide the highest specified wattage. If you have a device that routinely hits the max spec, you will experience some kind of failure. I'd rather see a 90 Watt charger. There were at least 3 USB slots I could see and they can pull at least 5 Watts. Additional components can pull more electricity too; like a 2.5 inch drive and the M.2 SSD. Maxed out the 65W adapter doesn't have a lot of wiggle room.
  • rhx123 - Monday, April 20, 2015 - link

    I'm sure the NUCs are getting uglier each time. The all black Ivy Bridge NUC was by far the best looking of the lot.
  • CaedenV - Monday, April 20, 2015 - link

    So I am curious about 4K support. This thing purports to have 4K display support, but I wonder how well it works. In another year or two it will be time to upgrade my wife's desktop and I really want to get a slick little NUC (or NUC-like) device paired with a small-ish (35-45") curved 4K display/TV. All it needs to do is web browsing, office, UHD video (h.265, Netflix 4K and youtube 4K), and upscaling our digital library of our ripped DVDs and BluRays (h.264 and h.265) to 4K playback. It does not need to play games, or rather can stream games via the home network from the 'real computer' in the basement which should have 4K game support in a few years.

    Any thoughts if this is realistic on this model? Will the technology be there in this form factor in 2 years? Or should I be looking at one more home-built machine for my wife's desk? I would really like to get her something small and fanless... or at least low-power enough to run fanless most of the time.
  • ganeshts - Monday, April 20, 2015 - link

    Something like the NUC will be working great in the next generation or so. This one has 4K support, but not HDMI 2.0 - Refer to our earlier piece on why most PC platforms are not ready for the 4K era yet :
  • xchaotic - Tuesday, April 21, 2015 - link

    'or rather can stream games via the home network' in uncompressed 4k???? that way more than even fiber can handle
  • extide - Thursday, April 23, 2015 - link

    He never said uncompressed 4k...
  • PICman - Monday, April 20, 2015 - link

    Ganesh, what is this 'realm of reason' of which you speak so frequently? What lies beyond the 'realm of reason'?
  • nathanddrews - Monday, April 20, 2015 - link

    Further confirmation that Broadwell is a big fizzle.
  • Flunk - Monday, April 20, 2015 - link

    Ticks generally just update the tock, so that's no surprise.

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