Benchmark Results: CPU And Multimedia
While both the Millennium and our CyberPower LAN Party Evo baseline system share the same CPU (a relatively modest quad-core Intel Core i5-3570K), performance on CPU-centric tests is far from equal. CyberPower, perhaps constrained by the thermal issues that come with a compact case, leaves the chip at a stock 3.4 GHz base frequency able to reach up to 3.8 GHz in light workloads via Turbo Boost.
Meanwhile, Origin takes advantage of the Millennium's larger case and its own branded Frostbyte 120 closed-loop liquid cooler, pushing the Core i5-3570K to an impressive 4.6 GHz. This yields an appreciable performance edge in both single- and multi-threaded tasks. The difference is on stark display in Cinebench, yet it manifests noticeably in more real-world tests as well.
Many of these tests are designed to measure CPU performance for processor testing, so the software is offloaded onto a RAM drive, ensuring that drive performance doesn't impact the results. However, most users are likely going to keep their software on the boot drives, and the Millennium’s dual SSDs in RAID 0 give it a distinct advantage there. We’ll delve deeper into that subsystem once we get to drive testing.
However, we know from quite a bit of follow-up testing after this quarter's System Builder Marathon that the RAM drive doesn't actually affect performance that much. Running these benchmarks from an SSD, or even a hard drive, returns similar numbers. So, while the Millennium's two SSDs in RAID 0 are going to really help it with boot times and app loading, don't expect processor-dependent workloads to realize much benefit from them.
With its overclocked CPU, the Millennium’s productivity and media-crunching performance is very impressive. It holds a strong lead over CyberPower's baseline system with the same CPU, sans overclock. In many ways, the Millennium's overclocked Core i5 would likely stack up well against pricier i7 processors at stock settings.
Sure, if you’re a professional content-creator who frequently waits around for media to render, using software that takes advantage of all available cores and threads, you may want to step up to a Sandy Bridge-E-based system. But given the price difference, we maintain that Intel's Core i5-3570K and Core i7-3770K are far smarter options for even demanding gamers.