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Benchmark Results: Compression Apps

AMD FX-8350 Review: Does Piledriver Fix Bulldozer's Flaws?
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Corel just introduced WinZip 17, and we’re finally satisfied with the application’s ability to fully tax multiple cores simultaneously. The latest version of WinZip supports OpenCL-based acceleration on AMD, Intel, and Nvidia hardware, and we enabled the feature throughout testing. This is only applied to files larger than 8 MB, though. Our test folder contains thousands of files, and there aren’t many larger than 8 MB. So, it makes very little difference whether we run our benchmark with or without OpenCL support turned on.

Regardless, in a massive shift from last year when we tested the FX-8150 under WinZip 14 and it placed dead-last, the FX-8350 finishes in second place. The FX-8150 takes fourth—and against a more capable field, no less.

AMD would likely point at our test and rightly note that an increasing number of performance-sensitive applications are moving this direction—they’re either able to exploit multiple x86 cores simultaneously or leverage graphics resources. This gives the company’s hardware a growing advantage. But we remain concerned about the power it draws while it’s delivering marginally better benchmark results. More on that soon.

In light of WinZip’s rise to prominence once again, WinRAR looks like it’s now the least-able to exploit on-die resources. Sure, it sees plenty of speed-up from Intel’s efficient Ivy Bridge architecture. And the fact that an FX-8350 edges out an FX-8150 suggests those extra 400 MHz are going to use. But the new chip’s fifth-place finish is a tell-tale sign that the hardware is underutilized.

The outcome in 7-Zip isn’t too far off from WinZip 17. The Core i7-3770K does very well, but is followed closely by the FX-8350. AMD’s FX-8150 isn’t far behind that.

It’s almost surprising to see a Phenom II X6 take fourth place, but when you consider the four quad-core parts bringing up the back of the pack, it becomes clearer that 7-Zip has an affinity for cores, even if it takes of six of AMD’s Stars-based cores to beat four of Intel’s.

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