Tuning Cool'n'Quiet: Maximize Power And Performance, Part 2

Benchmark Results: 3DMark Vantage

Due to the (lack of) performance of the integrated graphics core, we skip the graphics benchmark all together and focus on the CPU tests, which tax PhysX and AI. So, this is really a processor test rather than a graphics test. Does it fully utilize all cores?

It does. Let’s see the results, then.

And of course, the power consumed during the benchmark:

There's practically no noticeable performance difference between running with and without power management. However, due to its ability to fully utilize all available cores, the performance differences between these processors are more apparent. Overall, lower-end processors seem to offer about 2/3 the performance of faster ones. The Athlon X2 7750, 7850, and the newer Athlon II X2 250 basically deliver the same level of performance.

Looking at average consumption, the Athlon II X2 250 uses the least amount of power. That's good, but the Phenom II X3 710 with one additional core isn’t that far off. With this processor, you get more performance (about 38% faster), yet maintain the same average consumption as a dual-core Athlon X2 7750. The situation is similar when we look at the total power consumed during the benchmark run.

But it’s not exactly the most efficient processor. Once you tweak the voltages, the Phenom II X4 945 offers more performance (136% compared to the the Athlon X2 7750, 53% compared to the Phenom II X3 710), while consuming just a little bit more power (19% more than the Athlon X2 7750). Put into perspective, that’s almost the same total power consumption as an Athlon X2 7750, yet close to 2.5 times the performance (it offers about 2.41 times the performance). The Phenom II X4 955 is 156% faster and consumes 30% more power.

There's more to the situation than meets the eye, though. If you remember, the difference in average consumption is about 19 watts. Now, that includes the difference due to different motherboards used (Biostar TA790GX 128M and Gigabyte GA-MA790GP DS4H). If our estimates are correct, the Phenom II X4 945 consumes just as much (or as little) power as the Athlon X2 7750 with Optimized settings.

Create a new thread in the UK Article comments forum about this subject
This thread is closed for comments
Comment from the forums
    Your comment
  • Anonymous
    I would have liked to see how the quad 810 processor would have gone, considering it is just one peg above the triple core 720, and a few pegs below the 945 and 955 - perhaps it yields a nice balance/performance/voltage ratio? Certainly interesting given that it is a 95w processor, but possessing four cores, I guess that it would have trumped the 720. Maybe AMD sponsors these articles, and have to sell a few more 720s first.
  • chispas
    AMD 810 FTW
  • silverblue
    I doubt AMD sponsors these. Have you seen how poorly the 710 does at DivX? I doubt that DivX will change their code for triple core CPUs, so the 720 will behave similarly to the 710. In addition, this guide is an AMD-only guide.