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Intel Xeon E5-2600: Doing Damage With Two Eight-Core CPUs

Benchmark Results: Media/Encoding

CPU Utilization during MainConcept

Although we typically consider media encoding workloads to be ideal for showing off the benefits of multi-core processors, there’s a limit to these more desktop-oriented applications’ parallelism. MainConcept takes advantage of the physical cores on our Xeon 5500 and 5600 platforms, but still doesn’t fully tax each one. As a result, scaling isn’t particularly aggressive. Moreover, the Core i7-3960X’s improved architecture helps it out-maneuver two Xeon W5580s.

CPU Utilization during HandBrake

A similar situation transpires in HandBrake, though now the Core i7-3960X also overtakes two Xeon X5680s as well. At least for this type of task, a dual-processor workstation is pretty clearly overkill.

So why the heck would you run Lame, then? We already know this is a single-threaded test (at least when you run one instance of it). For our purposes, we’re really just demonstrating single-core per-clock performance and the impact of Turbo Boost on these flagship processors.

Core i7-3960X spins up to 3.9 GHz with a single core active. Combining the benefits of high frequency with the Sandy Bridge architecture, a first-place finish is no surprise. Xeon E5-2687W, an eight-core beast dissipating up to 150 W, runs at up to 3.8 GHz with one active core. As expected, it falls in just behind the desktop CPU. A max Turbo Boost frequency of 3.6 GHz earns the Xeon X5680 third place.

Chris Angelini
Chris Angelini is an Editor Emeritus at Tom's Hardware US. He edits hardware reviews and covers high-profile CPU and GPU launches.
  • CaedenV
    My brain cannot comprehend what CS5 would look like with this combined with a 1TB R4 drive, and the GTX680 version of the Quatro would look like... and I am sure my wallet cannot!

    Great article! I was not expecting my mind to be blown away today, and it was :)
    Reply
  • dalethepcman
    No gaming benchmarks? I know this is a high workstation / mid server build, but you know some of the boutiques will make a gaming rig out of any platform. Just out of curiosity, I would have liked to see 2x7970 or 2x580 and a few gaming benchmarks thrown in. :)
    Reply
  • willard
    dalethepcmanNo gaming benchmarks? I know this is a high workstation / mid server build, but you know some of the boutiques will make a gaming rig out of any platform. Just out of curiosity, I would have liked to see 2x7970 or 2x580 and a few gaming benchmarks thrown in.I'd be really surprised to see these in gaming machines, even in the high end boutiques. That's a $2k processor they reviewed, and basically all it offers over the $1k SB-E chip (for gamers) is an extra pair of cores, which games can't make use of.
    Reply
  • nforce4max
    I must say DROOL :O

    Reply
  • esrever
    why aren't AMD cpus tested too? I wouldn't mind seeing how 2x interlagos stacks up.
    Reply
  • reclusiveorc
    I wonder how fast TempEncode would chew thru transcoding avi/wmv files to mp3/mp4
    Reply
  • willard
    esreverwhy aren't AMD cpus tested too? I wouldn't mind seeing how 2x interlagos stacks up.Anandtech benched those next to the new Xeons. Went about as well as Bulldozer vs. Sandy Bridge.

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/5553/the-xeon-e52600-dual-sandybridge-for-servers/6
    Reply
  • cangelini
    esreverwhy aren't AMD cpus tested too? I wouldn't mind seeing how 2x interlagos stacks up.Mentioned on the test page--I've invited them to send hardware and they haven't moved on it yet.
    Reply
  • willard
    cangeliniMentioned on the test page--I've invited them to send hardware and they haven't moved on it yet.I would guess that's because Interlagos is garbage compared to the new Xeons and they know it. I don't think they're terribly eager for the front page of Tom's Hardware to show the low end Xeon's beating the best Interlagos has to offer.
    Reply
  • Onus
    What, or who, was the target? Are there military applications for this weapon?

    Sorry, vote me down all you like, but the title was just silly.
    Reply