Benchmark Results: Productivity
Photoshop CS4 is fairly well-optimized for quad-core CPUs, providing proof-of-concept for anyone who prefers to buy at least a mid-priced machine. The relatively small performance difference between $1,250 and $2,500 machines will definitely skew the value scale.
Though the test time is much shorter, 3ds Max shows a very similar performance scale to the one seen in Photoshop, again putting some value into the $1,250 build’s quad-core processor.
AVG virus scans show remarkably close performance between the two top builds, while the cheaper machine falls far behind.
Both WinZip and WinRAR put big value on the $650 machine’s low-cost dual-core.