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Benchmark Results: Synthetics

Does Size Matter? Four Very Small Nettops Get Reviewed

SiSoft Sandra is a solid diagnostic that's able to help expose the low-level differences between each platform's components.

ASRock’s Vision HT wins Sandra's Arithmetic test by a mile thanks to its Ivy Bridge-based Core i5-3210M. Jeway’s Mini-Top does half as well. Keep in mind, though, that it's equipped with a dual-core Celeron and could potentially host a much faster processor. The Zotac Zbox nano AD11 and Lenovo Q180 trail, nearly tying as a consequence of their slower CPUs.

The Multi-Media CPU benchmark hands back similar results, though the Ivy Bridge-based ASRock machine increases its lead thanks to support for AVX extensions. The Celeron G540 in Jetway's Mini-Top reverts to SSE4.2, and the other two processors are limited to SSE2.

Sandra’s memory bandwidth benchmark almost mirrors the CPU results, although the Jetway's Celeron catches up a little to the ASRock's Core i5 here. Zotac’s AD11 platform manages to push a little more bandwidth than Lenovo’s thanks to higher memory clocks.

It’s perhaps most interesting to see Intel’s HD Graphics 4000 in the ASRock Vision HT edge out Nvidia's discrete GeForce GT 520M in the Jetway Mini-Top. It’s also puzzling to see the Zotac Zbox’s E-450 APU with 80 ALUs demonstrate a slight advantage over the Lenovo Q180’s discrete Radeon GPU with 160. More than likely, this is a result of the Atom processor bottlenecking performance.

While the Media Center result is similar across all four systems, the Application Start-Up and Windows Defender tests really differentiate them.

First, we see how the SSD in Zotac’s Zbox nano XS AD11 really helps performance, making the system snappier with faster application start-up. The trade-off, of course, is capacity, which is limited to 64 GB. With that said, boot time is wonderfully short. Next, we see how the 7200 RPM Western Digital drive we installed in the Jetway Mini-Top outperforms both 5400 RPM disks. ASRock and Lenovo demonstrate similar storage performance as a result of their slower repositories.

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