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System Builder Marathon: Performance And Value Compared

Results: File Compression

A quick look at 7-Zip's results lead us to believe that the $650 machine’s extra cores give it an edge over the $1300 PC’s four cores. This looks like the only application where such behavior is observed, though. Could it be that 7-Zip most completely utilizes the module concept that AMD employs?

Overclocking the $1300 PC's Core i5 helps it shake off the loss, while the $2550 Sandy Bridge-E-based machine benefits from an efficient architecture and 12 concurrent threads in play.

WinRAR’s performance spread is typical of the other multicore-optimized benchmarks, though we know WinRAR doesn't always demonstrate the best resource utilization. Meanwhile, WinZip’s EZ switch forces the highest compression possible, appearing to diminish the impact of Core i7-3930K's extra cores.