AMD & OpenCL: Faster compression, but without using GPU

In Trinity review, I found very interesting that the latest WinZip version was in the growing list of GPU accelerated consumer applications.

I tried to verify the OpenCL speed up with a supported discrete video card (HD 5830 with Catalyst 12.4 WHQL): the compression time was indeed reduced (with better speed up than Llano/Trinity), but global GPU usage was about zero (with GPU/memory clocks fixed at idle values).

I checked these results with various utilities, such as Task Manager, Resource Monitor, Sysinternals Process Explorer, GPU-Z and AMD System Monitor: WinZip's GPU usage was exactly zero!

I noted that CPU usage was instead bigger, so I suppose that, enabling OpenCL option, WinZip can simply use a better multi-thread algorithm.

Task Manager is enough to confirm that WinZip thread count is significantly bigger, sometimes more than double, with OpenCL code path.

I found the maximum speed up with JPEG photos (250%), whereas the minimum with PCM audio (30%).

I think that would be nice if other enthusiasts performed similar tests on different configurations and perhaps with other "GPU accelerated" programs.
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  1. According to slide and info from

    <<WinZip 16.5 is being optimized for AMD Fusion and Radeon Graphics
    - Fast memory access on Fusion APUs
    - Massively parallel operation favors the most powerful discrete graphics
    - OpenCL allows workload to be spread across CPU, integrated GPU, and discrete graphics>>

    Furthermore from

    <<WinZip has been working closely with AMD to bring users a major leap in file compression and encryption technology. Available today, WinZip 16.5 uses OpenCL acceleration to take advantage of the significant power of the 2nd Gen AMD A-Series APUs and AMD Radeon GPUs.>>

    If GPU usage is consistently zero, all that statements are misleading!
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