Five Multimedia Notebooks, Tested

Test Results

We’ll report our test results in the form of a summary table (Table X), then follow each set of benchmarks with some description, discussion and analysis.

Table X: Multimedia Notebook Round-up Benchmark Summary Acer
Benchmark 8920G M70S D90X HDX 9203WK VGN-AR790U/B
Sysmark 2007 135 121 146 139 147
PCMark Overall 5371 6117 7541 5714 5165
PCMark CPU 6459 6212 8502 6678 6197
PCMark Memory 5154 4949 5586 5133 4999
PCMark Graphics 5300 5542 9293 7923 4487
PCMark HDD 4543 4595 6740 4639 5409
3DMark 1024 low 6233 4108 14143 9482 4846
3DMark 1280 low 5038 3764 13481 7992 3884
3Dmark 1920 low 3920 3308 12667 6205 2795
3DMark 1024 High 4546 2678 13276 7398 3676
3Dmark 1280 High 3549 2424 12181 6018 2842
3Dmark 1920 High 2637 2099 9854 4521 1888
iDHCAT 3.0 139 124 227 129 132
MobileMark Productivity 254 201 Fail 133 130
MobileMark Reader 138 160 72 135 100
MobileMark DVD 111 122 67 116 65

Table X makes three very interesting and potentially valuable points:

  • The Sony VGN-AR790U/B posts a surprisingly high SYSmark 2007 result — it’s higher than both the HP HDX and the Eurocom D90X. Given that the Sony unit has a T9300 and the HDX a T9500, while the other devices are on par, it’s interesting that the Sony outperforms the HP. The fact that the Eurocom has a faster quad-core processor and the Sony runs a little ahead says that SYSmark 2007 doesn’t really assess the true abilities of the processor or its faster drives.
  • When it comes to the rest of the benchmarks except for MobileMark (more on that in the next item), the range of equipment inside the various notebooks dictates their ranking for PCMark, MobileMark and Intel’s Digital Home Theater Capabilities Assessment Tool version 3.0. That said, both the Asus and the Acer units post very respectable showings, especially given their street prices.
  • In a single word, multimedia notebook battery life is miserable. Here again, the Asus and Acer units put on a surprisingly strong showing in the MobileMark tests, and are the only machines to break 200 minutes of battery life on the relatively undemanding Productivity test. The Web surfing (Reader) and DVD playback (DVD) tests otherwise evoke times that range from slightly over one hour — nowhere near enough time to watch a full-length DVD on battery power — to just over two hours to as long as just over two-and-a-half hours for the simple surfing scenario. This only confirms the notion that notebooks like these aren’t really meant to operate in battery-only mode. Rather, the battery serves more as a kind of built-in uninterruptible power supply (UPS) rather than as a genuine permanent power source.

With these preliminaries behind us, let’s take a closer look at the various benchmarks by category, where we’ll explain what these instruments measure and what this set of measurements has to tell us.

Create a new thread in the UK Article comments forum about this subject
This thread is closed for comments
No comments yet
Comment from the forums
    Your comment