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Test System Configuration And Benchmarks

Is This Even Fair? Budget Ivy Bridge Takes On Core 2 Duo And Quad
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System Test Configurations
LGA 1155 Platform
CPUIntel Celeron G1610 (Ivy Bridge), 22 nm, 2.6 GHz, 2 MB Shared L3

Intel Pentium G2020 (Ivy Bridge), 22 nm, 2.9 GHz, 3 MB Shared L3

Intel Core i3-3225 (Ivy Bridge), 22 nm, 3.3 GHz, 3 MB Shared L3, Hyper-Threading technology

Intel Core i5-3570K (Ivy Bridge), 22 nm, 3.4 GHz (3.8 GHz maximum Turbo Boost), 6 MB Shared L3
CPU CoolerIntel Boxed Cooler
MotherboardIntel DZ77GA-70K, Intel Z77 Express, BIOS 0049  (07-13-2012)
RAM8 GB (2 x 4 GB) Crucial PC3-12800 kit
Celeron / Pentium: DDR3-1333, CL 8-8-8-24 at 1.5 V
Core i3 / Core i5: DDR3-1600, CL 8-8-8-24 at 1.5 V
LGA 775 Platform

Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 (Wolfdale), 45 nm, 3.0 GHz, 1,333 MT/s FSB, 6 MB L2 Cache
Overclocked @ 4.0 GHz (445 x 9), 1,780 MT/s FSB, 1.272 V Idle/ 1.240 V Load
Overclocked @ 4.5 GHz (500 x 9), 2,000 MT/s FSB, 1.416 V Idle, 1.384 V Load

Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 (Yorkfield), 45 nm, 2.83 GHz, 1,333 MT/s, 12 MB L2 Cache
Overclocked @ 3.4 GHz (400 x 8.5), 1,600 MT/s, 1.240 V Idle/ 1.200 V Load
Overclocked @ 3.7 GHz (435 x 8.5), 1,740 MT/s, 1.328 V Idle, 1.240 V Load
CPU CoolerXigmatek HDT-S1283 120 mm air cooler
MotherboardAsus Rampage Formula, Intel X48 Express, BIOS 0902 (04-28-09)
RAM4 GB (2 x 2 GB) Corsair PC2-8500 kit
DDR2-1066, 5-5-5-15 at 2.1 V
DDR2-890 & DDR2-1000 for E8400 Overclocking
DDR2-1066 & DDR2-1045 tRD 07 for Q9550 Overclocking
Common
GraphicsSapphire Radeon HD 7970, 950 MHz GPU, GDDR5-5700
System DriveSamsung 840 Pro 256 GB, SATA 6Gb/s SSD
PowerCorsair Professional Series HX1050, 1050 W, 80 PLUS Silver
 Software and Drivers
Operating SystemWindows 8 Professional x64
Graphics DriverAMD Catalyst 13.2 Beta 7
Platform DriverIntel 7-series Inf v. 9.3.1026
Benchmark Configuration
3D Games
Borderlands 2Version 1.0.28.69606, DirectX 9, Custom Run, Fraps
Test Set 1: Medium Quality Settings, Low PhysX, 8x AF
Test Set 2: Highest Quality Settings, Low PhysX,  FXAA,16x AF
Crysis 3Version 1.0.0.2000, Direct X 11, Custom Run, 60-Sec. Fraps
Test Set 1: Lowest Quality Settings, No AA, 1X AF
Test Set 2: Medium Quality Preset, FXAA, 8x AF
Test Set 3: Very High Quality Preset, 2x SMAA, 16x AF 
The Elder Scrolls V: SkyrimVersion 1.8.151.0.7, Custom Run, 25-Sec. Fraps
Test Set 1: High Preset, No AA, 8x AF, FXAA Enabled
Test Set 2: Ultra Preset, 8x AA, 16x AF, FXAA Enabled
F1 2012Version 1.2, Direct X 11, Built-in Benchmark
Test Set 1: High Quality, No AA
Test Set 2: Ultra Quality, 8x AA
Far Cry 3V. 1.04, DirectX 11, 50-sec. Fraps "Amanaki Outpost"
Test Set 1: High Quality, No AA, Standard ATC., SSAO
Test Set 2: Ultra Quality, 2x MSAA, Enhanced ATC, HDAO
Hitman: AbsolutionV. 1.0.446.0, DirectX 11, Built-in Benchmark
Test Set 1: Medium Quality Preset, No MSAA, 2x AF
Test Set 2: Ultra Quality Preset, 2x MSAA, 16x AF
StarCraft II: Heart of the SwarmVersion 2.0.6.25180, Custom Run "Harvest of Screams" Campaign Mission, 60-Sec. Fraps
Test Set 1: High Preset, No AA, 8x AF, FXAA Enabled
Test Set 2: Ultra Preset, 8x AA, 16x AF, FXAA Enabled
Tomb RaiderVersion 1.00.722.3, Direct X 11, Custom Runs, "Chasm Monastery", "Mountain Village", 45-Sec. Fraps
Test Set 1: High Quality Preset
Test Set 2: Ultimate Quality Preset
Audio/Video Encoding
HandBrake CLIVersion: 0.98, Video: Video from Canon Eos 7D (1920x1080, 25 frames) 1 Minutes 22 Seconds, Audio: PCM-S16, 48,000 Hz, Two-Channel, to Video: AVC1 Audio: AAC (High Profile)
iTunesVersion 10.4.1.10 x64: Audio CD (Terminator II SE), 53 minutes, default AAC format 
Lame MP3Version 3.98.3: Audio CD "Terminator II SE", 53 min, convert WAV to MP3 audio format, Command: -b 160 --nores (160 Kb/s)
TotalCode Studio 2.5Version: 2.5.0.10677, MPEG2 to H.264, MainConcept H.264/AVC Codec, 28 sec HDTV 1920x1080 (MPEG2), Audio:MPEG2 (44.1 kHz, Two-Channel, 16-Bit, 224 Kb/s) Codec: H.264 Pro, Mode: PAL 50i (25 FPS), Profile: H.264 BD HDMV
Abobe Creative Suite
Adobe After Effects CS6Version 11.0.0.378 x64: Create Video, Three Streams, 210 Frames, Render Multiple Frames Simultaneously
Adobe Photoshop CS6Version 13 x64: Filter 15.7 MB TIF Image: Radial Blur, Shape Blur, Median, Polar Coordinates
Adobe Premiere Pro CS6Version 6.0.0.0, 6.61 GB MXF Project to H.264 to H.264 Blu-ray, Output 1920x1080, Maximum Quality
Adobe Acrobat X ProVersion 10.0.0.396: Print PDF from 115 Page PowerPoint, 128-bit RC4 Encyption
Productivity
ABBYY FineReaderVersion 10.0.102.95: Read PDF save to Doc, Source: Political Economy (J. Broadhurst 1842) 111 Pages
Autodesk 3ds Max 2012Version 14.0 x64: Space Flyby Mentalray, 248 Frames, 1440x1080
BlenderVersion 2.64a, Cycles Engine, Syntax blender -b thg.blend -f 1, 1920x1080, 8x Anti-Aliasing, Render THG.blend frame 1
Compression
7-ZipVersion 9.28, LZMA2, Syntax "a -t7z -r -m0=LZMA2 -mx=5"
Benchmark: THG-Workload-2012 (1.3 GB)
WinRARVersion 4.2, RAR, Syntax "winrar a -r -m3"
Benchmark: THG-Workload-2012 (1.3 GB)
WinZipVersion 17.0 Pro, Syntax "-a -ez -p -r"
Benchmark: THG-Workload-2012 (1.3 GB)
Synthetic Benchmarks and Settings
3DMark 11Version: 1.0.1, Performance Suite
PCMark 7Version: 1.0.4, System, Productivity, Hard Disk Drive benchmarks
SiSoftware Sandra 2013Version: 2013.01.19.11, Processor  Arithmetic,
Cryptography, Memory Bandwidth Benchmarks
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Top Comments
  • 41 Hide
    ASHISH65 , May 5, 2013 9:29 PM
    Wow! this is the review i am waiting from long time.Really good one for budget gamers.
  • 33 Hide
    CaptainTom , May 6, 2013 12:00 AM
    Tom's, this is the kind of articles we want to see! Not some BS car article, but real comparisons no other website has made...
  • 28 Hide
    lpedraja2002 , May 5, 2013 10:20 PM
    Excellent article, I'm glad I have a more accurate idea on where I stand based on CPU performance, I'm still using my trusty Q6600, G0 @ 3.2ghz. Its good that Tom's still hasn't forgotten that a lot of enthusiast still are rocking Core 2 architecture lol. I think I can manage until Intel releases their next revolutionary CPU.
Other Comments
  • 41 Hide
    ASHISH65 , May 5, 2013 9:29 PM
    Wow! this is the review i am waiting from long time.Really good one for budget gamers.
  • 11 Hide
    amoralman , May 5, 2013 9:34 PM
    God dammit! Now I feel like I need to change my C2D E8400. >:( 
  • 24 Hide
    DarkSable , May 5, 2013 9:41 PM
    Now this is cool stuff.

    Also, amoralman, did you read this? It's basically assuring you that your C2D is still awesome as a budget processor.
  • 12 Hide
    Steelwing , May 5, 2013 10:11 PM
    Very nice review! I've got a C2D E6600 (2.4 GHz) and had been considering the Core i5-3570K (or possibly wait for a Haswell i5) and was wondering about the performance differences. My CPU is still good for a lot of apps, but I can definitely see a reason to upgrade.
  • 5 Hide
    AMD Radeon , May 5, 2013 10:13 PM
    pentium dual core G2020 is the minimum i can recommend to budget gamers. i often listed it in sub 450 gaming PC
  • 28 Hide
    lpedraja2002 , May 5, 2013 10:20 PM
    Excellent article, I'm glad I have a more accurate idea on where I stand based on CPU performance, I'm still using my trusty Q6600, G0 @ 3.2ghz. Its good that Tom's still hasn't forgotten that a lot of enthusiast still are rocking Core 2 architecture lol. I think I can manage until Intel releases their next revolutionary CPU.
  • 15 Hide
    assasin32 , May 5, 2013 10:29 PM
    I been wanting to see one of these for a long time but never thought I get to see it. I just wish they had the good ol e2160, and q6600 thrown into the mix. I have the e2180 OC to 3ghz. It's still chugging along surprisingly enough, I just realized how old the thing was last night after thinking about how long I've had this build and looking up when the main components were produced. Safe to say I got my use out of that $70 cpu, did a 50% OC to it :)  and it still had room to go but I wanted to keep the voltage very low.
  • 6 Hide
    jrharbort , May 5, 2013 10:32 PM
    I've always been curious about how well my own Core 2 Duo P8800 (45nm & 2.66GHz) would stand up against modern ivy bridge offerings. And even though I'm talking about he mobile space, I'm guessing the gains would be comparable to those seen by their desktop counterparts. Each day I'm reminded more and more that I seriously need to move on to a newer system, especially since I work with a lot of media production software. Thanks for the article, it provided some interesting and useful insight.
  • 8 Hide
    smeezekitty , May 5, 2013 10:46 PM
    Kind of interesting that the old Core 2s beat the I5 in tombrader with TressFX on.
    Also holy crap on 1.45 vcore on the C2D
  • 19 Hide
    Proximon , May 5, 2013 11:07 PM
    I would not have predicted this. Not to this extent. I hope we can make these broader comparisons across years more frequently after this. I predict this will be a very popular article.
  • 3 Hide
    Matsushima , May 5, 2013 11:23 PM
    Remember the Pentium Dual-Core E6500K... They should have included that and overclocked it.
  • 10 Hide
    timaishu , May 5, 2013 11:24 PM
    Wow. This article could have popped up at a better time. Was considering upgrading my ageing E6600 for a higher end supported processor. Was thinking of getting a core 2 extreme QX6800 off ebay for around 130ish. I looked on cpu benchmark and it really isn't that much faster than the Pentium in this article. That is insance considering that cpu cost aroun 1k on release. I am now reconsidering and just holding off on extending my lga775's lifespan and just replacing it with a new platform in the near future.

    I find it shocking that my E6600(which I still hold in high regard, is far far worse than a 50 dollar Celeron. My mind is blown.
  • 5 Hide
    killabanks , May 5, 2013 11:44 PM
    Great article thanks!
  • 10 Hide
    sarinaide , May 5, 2013 11:52 PM
    Old processors still have some kick in them. Q9000, Q6600, E8600, Athlon II X4, Phenom II's all still have enough grunt in them to game a little while yet, the quads should be fine for another year or two.
  • 33 Hide
    CaptainTom , May 6, 2013 12:00 AM
    Tom's, this is the kind of articles we want to see! Not some BS car article, but real comparisons no other website has made...
  • 5 Hide
    Matsushima , May 6, 2013 12:04 AM
    If you're happy with the performance level that your 5-year-old dualcore gives, there's no need to upgrade or build a new system. I'm happy with this 4-year-old dualcore right now and my Pentium 4 Northwood SINGLE CORE was more than enough for web browsing and some YouTube videos but all that's left now of it is the processor. I miss that boring beige case.

    That said, today's quads have a more efficient and better architecture than those of yesteryear, and the 3570K is a popular choice for enthusiasts.
  • 3 Hide
    Matsushima , May 6, 2013 12:05 AM
    The 3570K is the new E8400. Less headroom, but the usage and reception are similar.
  • -2 Hide
    loops , May 6, 2013 12:17 AM
    what no 2500K?

    :) 
  • 2 Hide
    ingtar33 , May 6, 2013 12:33 AM
    basically, this is saying that the P4m architecture which lead to the core2duo and by extension then the core i series was the pinnacle of cpu innovation.

    intel made all their leaps forward with this architecture, and killed AMD in the process. And has never really moved past it... 6 years on and it still stands toe to toe with the latest and greatest.

    I'm not that surprised really.
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , May 6, 2013 12:36 AM
    SteelwingVery nice review! I've got a C2D E6600 (2.4 GHz) and had been considering the Core i5-3570K (or possibly wait for a Haswell i5) and was wondering about the performance differences. My CPU is still good for a lot of apps, but I can definitely see a reason to upgrade.

    i have both and the 3570k is significantly faster than an e6600, i always had problems with the e6600 not being fast enough for my taste, its a night and day difference between the 2
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