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System Builder Marathon, December 2010: $1000 PC

Test Systems And Benchmarks

We compare our new build to the $1000 enthusiast system we put together for our last SBM in September 2010. The Intel Core i3-550/Nvidia GeForce GTX 460 SLI combo should have a higher capacity for playable high-resolution graphics than the preceding Core i5-750/GeForce GTX 470 config. But the previous system’s quad-core CPU is expected to outperform our dual-core model in threaded productivity and transcoding applications.

$1000 Enthusiast PC Test Settings
Standard SpeedOverclocked
MotherboardASUS Sabertooth 55i Chipset: Intel P55Unchanged
ProcessorIntel Core i3-5503.2 GHz, Dual Core, 4 MB L3 Cache4019 MHz at 1.35 V,167.5 MHz BCLK
MemoryGeIL Black Dragon 4 GB (2 x 2 GB) SDRAM DDR3-1333 Dual-Channel Desktop Memory Kit, CAS 7-7-7-24-1TDDR3-1004, CAS 7-7-7-24-1T
Graphics2 x ECS NBGTX460 (SLI) 1 GB GDDR5-3700 Per CardGeForce GTX 460 GPU at 765/1530 MHz core/shadersGDDR5-3800 825/1650 MHz core/shaders
Hard DrivesWestern Digital Caviar Black 750 GB 7200 RPM, 32 MB Cache, SATA 3Gb/sUnchanged
OpticalLG 22x DVD – GH22LS50 OEM22x DVD+R, 8x DVD+RW, 48x CD ROMUnchanged
CaseNZXT GammaUnchanged
PowerCorsair CMPSU-650TX 650 W ATX12V, EPS12V, 80 PLUS CertifiedUnchanged
$1000 Enthusiast PC (From Previous SBM) Test Settings
Standard SpeedOverclocked
MotherboardAsus P7P55D-E LX LGA 1156, Intel P55 chipset, BIOS 1003Unchanged
ProcessorIntel Core i5-750  2.66 GHz, Four Cores, 8 MB L3 Cache3.75 GHz, 178 MHz Reference Clock
MemoryCrucial 4 GB (2 x 2 GB) SDRAM DDR3-1333 Dual-Channel Desktop Memory Kit, CAS 9-9-9-24-1TDDR3-1070, CAS 8-8-8-22-1T
GraphicsMSI GeForce GTX 470 1280 MB GDDR5-3348 Per Card 607/1215 MHz GPU/Shaders, 837 MHz MemGDDR5-4500 690/1380 MHz GPU/Shaders, 845 MHz Mem
Hard DrivesWestern Digital Caviar Black 640 GB 7200 RPM, 32 MB Cache, SATA 3Gb/sUnchanged
OpticalLite-On iHAS12424x DVD+R, 8x DVD+RW, 48x CD ROMUnchanged
CaseAntec Three HundredUnchanged
PowerCorsair CMPSU-650HX 650 W ATX12V, EPS12V , 80 PLUS CertifiedUnchanged

And here's a list of the benchmarks:

Benchmark Configuration
3D Games
CrysisPatch 1.2.1, DirectX 10, 64-bit executable, benchmark tool Test Set 1: High Quality, No AA Test Set 2: Very High Quality, No AA
DiRT 2In-game benchmarkTest Set 1: High Quality Preset, No AATest Set 2: Ultra Quality Preset, 8x AA
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2Campaign, Act III, Second Sun (45 sec. FRAPS)Test Set 1: Highest Settings, No AATest Set 2: Highest Settings, 4x AA
S.T.A.L.K.E.R.:Call of PripyatS.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call Of Pripyat benchmark versionTest Set 1: High Preset, DX11 EFDL, No AATest Set 2: Ultra Preset, DX11 EFDL, 4x MSAA
World in ConflictPatch 1009, DirectX 10, timedemo Test 1: Very High Details, No AA / No AF Test 2: Very High Details 4x AA / 16x AF
Audio/Video Encoding
iTunesVersion: 9.0.2.25 x64Audio CD ("Terminator II" SE), 53 minDefault format AAC
Handbrake 0.9.4Version 0.9.4, convert first .vob filefrom "The Last Samurai" (1 GB) to .mp4 High Profile
TMPGEnc 4.0 ExpressVersion: 4.7.3.292Import File: "Terminator 2" SE DVD (5 Minutes)Resolution: 720x576 (PAL) 16:9
DivX 6.9.1Encoding mode: Insane QualityEnhanced multithreading enabled using SSE4Quarter-pixel search
XviD 1.2.2Display encoding status = off
MainConcept Reference 1.6.1MPEG2 to MPEG2 (H.264), MainConcept H.264/AVC Codec28 sec HDTV 1920x1080 (MPEG2) Audio: MPEG2 (44.1 KHz, 2 Channel, 16-Bit, 224 Kb/s) Mode: PAL (25 FPS)
Productivity
Adobe Photoshop CS4 (64-bit)Version: 11.0 x64, Filter 15.7MB TIF ImageRadial Blur, Shape Blur, Median, Polar Coordinates
Autodesk 3ds Max 2010Version: 11.0 x64, Rendering Dragon Image at 1920x1080 (HDTV)
Grisoft AVG Anti-Virus 9.0Version: 9.0.663, Virus base: 270.14.1/2407Benchmark: Scan 334 MB Folder of ZIP/RAR compressed files
WinRAR 3.90Version x64 3.90, Dictionary = 4,096 KB, Benchmark: THG-Workload (334 MB)
7-ZipVersion 4.65: Format=Zip, Compression=Ultra, Method=Deflate, Dictionary Size=32KB, Word Size=128, Threads=8Benchmark: THG-Workload (334 MB)
Synthetic Benchmarks
3DMark VantageVersion: 1.01, GPU and CPU scores
PCMark VantageVersion: 1.0.1.0 x64, System, Productivity, Hard Disk Drive benchmarks
SiSoftware Sandra 2010Version 2010.1.16.11, CPU Test = CPU Arithmetic / MultiMedia, Memory Test = Bandwidth Benchmark