Wednesday morning we received a statement from Business Applications Performance Corporation (BAPCo) in regards to Tuesday's report about the departure of AMD. In a nutshell, AMD didn't agree with the direction SYSmark 2012 was taking, so the CPU manufacturer decided to leave BAPCo and retract its endorsement for the benchmark. On Wednesday BAPCo decided to respond.
"BAPCo is a non-profit consortium made up of many of the leaders in the high tech field, including Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Hitachi, Intel, Lenovo, Microsoft, Samsung, Seagate, Sony, Toshiba and ARCintuition," the company said in an emailed letter. "For nearly 20 years BAPCo has provided real world application based benchmarks which are used by organizations worldwide. SYSmark 2012 is the latest release of the premiere application based performance benchmark. Applications used in SYSmark 2012 were selected based on market research and include Microsoft Office, Adobe Creative Suite, Adobe Acrobat, WinZip, Autodesk AutoCAD and 3ds Max, and others."
"Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) was, until recently, a long standing member of BAPCo.," the consortium continued. "We welcomed AMD's full participation in the two year development cycle of SYSmark 2012, AMD's leadership role in creating the development process that BAPCo uses today and in providing expert resources for developing the workload contents. Each member in BAPCo gets one vote on any proposals made by member companies. AMD voted in support of over 80% of the SYSmark 2012 development milestones, and were supported by BAPCo in 100% of the SYSmark 2012 proposals they put forward to the consortium."
"BAPCo also notes for the record that, contrary to the false assertion by AMD, BAPCo never threatened AMD with expulsion from the consortium, despite previous violations of its obligations to BAPCo under the consortium member agreement.
"BAPCo is disappointed that a former member of the consortium has chosen once more to violate the confidentiality agreement they signed, in an attempt to dissuade customers from using SYSmark to assess the performance of their systems. BAPCo believes the performance measured in each of the six scenarios in SYSmark 2012, which is based on the research of its membership, fairly reflects the performance that users will see when fully utilizing the included applications."
Tuesday AMD hinted that SYSmark 2012 doesn't provide "clear and reliable measurements" and is "misleading" thanks to the use of unrepresentative workloads that seemingly favors one particular non-AMD CPU manufacturer. AMD's Nigel Dessau even said that AMD tried to work within the BAPCo consortium in order to get the next-generation benchmark, SYSmark 2012, correct. He also stressed that it needed to be open, transparent and processor-neutral, but apparently the company went unheeded.
"Our good intentions were met with an outcome that we believe does a disservice to the industry and our customers," he said. "We weren’t able to effect positive change within BAPCo, and the resulting benchmark continues to distort workload performance and offers even less transparency to end users."