Adobe Photoshop CS4 Performance

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.

The whole process is timed and thanks to the use of Intel's X25-M SSD as our test bed hard drive, performance is far more predictable than back when we used to test on mechanical disks.

Time is reported in seconds and the lower numbers mean better performance. The test is multithreaded and can hit all four cores in a quad-core machine.

Adobe Photoshop CS4 - Retouch Artists Speed Test

Photoshop performance of our triple core competitor is slower than the lower clocked X4 620. It is however the exact same speed as the Phenom II X3 720.

SYSMark 2007 Performance Video Encoding Performance


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  • MonicaS - Thursday, October 29, 2009 - link

    I'm pretty sure its a safe bet that soon AMD will be catching up to Intel in the way of value. I can't really see the use or the need of increased performance from CPU in the near future. The C2D are more the good enough with the Quatro and i7 being over powered for what people need. It will soon come down to price as it really won't make sense to get more power.

    Monica S
    Los Angeles Computer Repair">
  • mapesdhs - Friday, October 30, 2009 - link

    It depends what you need. The Core2Duo is not remotely good enough
    for my needs (video encoding) and neither are AMD's best quad-cores.
    For me, the i7 is ideal. I have a thousand hours of video to convert.


  • silverblue - Saturday, October 31, 2009 - link

    Yes, but I think you are really paying for it. Additionally, at the price point of the Athlon X3s/X4s in this review, you're not going to get anything from Intel that handles encoding comparatively well for that sort of price, however I should point out that AMD's competitors in the sub-$100 bracket are the Core 2 Duos/Pentium Dual Cores, not the Quads, and no Nehalem in sight. If Intel released a dual core Nehalem at this price range, I'm not sure even the Athlon X4s could compete with that, at least in encoding. Reply
  • silverblue - Friday, October 30, 2009 - link

    Catching up? I was going to say that I think we've already passed that point :) Reply
  • teclis1023 - Thursday, October 29, 2009 - link

    I'm not interested in getting into this flame war about monopolies, Intel and AMD. If anything, I certainly wish there were MORE competitive players in the field, though entrance costs are certainly staggering. I wouldn't mind being able to pick from 3 CPU makers and 3 GPU makers. Even then, it would hardly be a competitive market, but hey - I like choice, and 3 producers is hardly a flooded market!

    All I know is that I'm quite satisfied that, using AMD and ATI, I can build a well-performing all-around computer for less than $800. I don't need the top of the line for my home performance, even when I want to play games like Crysis and Left 4 Dead. I just need stability and good support.

    I'm also quite happy that AMD is putting a lot of effort into low-power CPUs. There's no reason we should have to pull 800W in order to play the highest end games. I'd love to see gaming systems running at 350W or below! (It's good to see Dell and HP finally embracing 80+ Certified PSUs)

    I tend to purchase AMD components because I'm simply not an over-clocking, mega-gaming power user. I like games, but I also like being able to pay for other things, such as food and rent :) Sure, I'd love to have an i7, but I honestly don't know what I would do with it. Would a person like me (Tech savvy, to be sure, but not a power-gamer) really use the power? Doubtful. Honestly, most users in the world demand very little from their systems.

    Before 2008, I tried my best to stay away from ATI products. I was never impressed with their performance or their driver support; however, for the money, they seem to be the best 'bang for the buck'. Paying $130 for a 4870 is a great deal for someone like me. Sure, I wish their drivers were less bulky, but overall, the products are fantastic.

    Good luck duking it out - I'll stay here on the sidelines!
  • rhog - Monday, October 26, 2009 - link

    To all you guys knocking AMD have you looked at the main stream products of Intel as of late? Have you tried a Core i5 750? This CPU is a shame. I had real hopes for it as I own two core i7 920 (3.8ghz and 4.0ghz). Having no hyperthreading and performance just slightly better than the PIIBE it is not the Killer processor I thought it coudl have been. On a side note, If you count the user posts at Newegg it "seems" not to be selling well as compared to the 920 and the PIIBE 940 and 955. In the 200 dollar range a 955BE at OC'd to 3.8ghz does very well against the Core i5 750 that has been overclocked as well. Under 200 the Core2 Quads and Duos are just not that great compared to a PIIBE processors and in the $120 and under AMD Athlon II X4 620, which I own, is a great CPU for the money. AMD is starting to come out of the red and they are doing it the right way. Most processors are bought in the Under 200 dollar catagory and the Core i5 is not competing that well, at least for now, as it is not a clear winner. Just my Opinion as an owner of a Core i5 Reply
  • lukem33p - Friday, August 20, 2010 - link

    Excuse me? All of these multimedia tasks are eaten up right now by the i5, if you look, because it has far better instruction sets, Turbo mode, and L3 cache, which the Athlons do not. Phenom IIs, but for the latest Thuban, because of how lopsided instruction set optimization has gotten. Reply
  • AlmostDone - Sunday, October 25, 2009 - link

    If AMD wants a bigger slice of the cake they need decent CPU's or CPU/GPU combo for notebooks, fast and power efficient.

    Notebooks growth is much faster than your desktop.

    What budget mainboard do people recommend to go with a X4 620.

  • lujo - Thursday, October 22, 2009 - link

    This is not correct:

    "Thanks to its higher clock speed the Athlon II X3 435 draws a little more power than the 620 at idle, but uses a little less under load. The new energy efficient chips can't be touched. Personally I wouldn't spring for them, but if you're looking to upgrade a building full of machines and want as much power reduction as possible the e series can deliver."

    At idle 435 and 620 are running at the same clock speed and same voltage.
    435 X3 is nothing more than 620 X4 without one core.
    There mus be another reason why at idle 435 draws a little more power than 620.

    I personally think 620 should use at idle more power than 435
  • LazierSaid - Thursday, October 22, 2009 - link

    Yet another review showing how much more power efficient AMD is on the bottom end


    When you test your $75 value Pentiums on $200+ X48 boards that run 15 watts over the G4x boards people actually buy.

    The X48 northbridge alone has a TDP over 30 watts.

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