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Old April 3rd, 2012, 08:32 AM   #1
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CPU performance

Hi everyone

Since my knowledge of CPU performance is a bit dangerous... I would like to know if the below CPU is good for NLE programs. This PC comes with 16 GB of RAM.

Intel Xeon processor E3-1240, 8 MB, 3.30 GHz

Intel® Xeon® Processor E3-1240 (8M Cache, 3.30 GHz))

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Old April 3rd, 2012, 10:00 AM   #2
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Re: CPU performance

That is just a renamed i7-2600 and that is OK for editing, but since it carries the name Xeon everything is more expensive, mobo, memory, CPU and is likely sold by HP or Dell and thus will be crippled from the start with lacking overclock capabilities, a crippled BIOS, a meager PSU with non-standard dimensions in the case of HP and way overpriced extras to make it an editing machine. They steal you blind on everything more than the plain basic configuration, which will not do for editing.
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Old April 9th, 2012, 02:57 PM   #3
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Re: CPU performance

I had the same question as I am interested in getting a dual xeon based editing system.

I've been looking at the Spec rates for various computers and am using this custom Specint2006 report here:

SPECint2006 Rate Results -- Results

The chart is sorted on the 464 base rate part of the specint2006 test which is an x264 encoding test.

The only thing I don't know is for the high end machines at the top of the list, I don't now if they are using tesla or quadro cards with GPU assisted encoding to get the very high encoding scores. Those cards and machines are very expensive from HP, Del IBM and such.

Searching the list for E3-1240, (which is 4 core sandybridge with no hyperthreading) it has a 464 base rate of 230 or so.

As a comparison, i7-3960X Extreme Edition has a 464 base rate of 354 (one sample on the chart)

As a comparison, Intel Core i7-2600K has a base rate of 238

As a comparison, a 3 year old Intel Core 2 Quad 9300 has a base rate of 101.

One major result of this chart is how far behind AMD is from Intel. I was originally looking at a dual Opteron 6274, 6238 or 4284 system but their 464 base rates are so low that I changed my mind. (clearly AMDs bulldozer chip architecture has a fundamental design flaw or the current OSes cannot take advantage of its capabilities) This chart has got me thinking a custom built dual e5-2640 system is a sweet spot. (464 base score of 566).

BTW all of the E5 series of intel chips are new this quarter ( e5's are dual processor capable sandy bridge 4,6 or 8 core xeon processors with hyperthreading) E5's are replacing the E,X,L,W5500 & 5600 series of xeon cpus. The e3 cpus are a 1 processor only desktop version of sandy bridge often with hyperthreading disabled.

According to Intels cpu roadmap, they will be releasing ivy bridge cpus for the remainder of the year. However ivy bridge is a 22nm die , designed to lower power consumption , and initially replace the mid range sandybridge desktop cpus. The i7-3960x will remain at the top of the 1 chip cpu performance curve for now.

Last edited by Ray Turcotte; April 9th, 2012 at 04:51 PM.
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Old April 10th, 2012, 02:03 AM   #4
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Re: CPU performance

First of all, I think the link you gave does not mean much for editors, for the simple reason that the vast majority of systems is running some form of Linux/Unix and the Windows systems are very few. Windows would be interesting for Premiere, Vegas and Edius editors, but not Linux.

Second, it is no surprise AMD is so far behind Intel, for the simple reason that AMD does not support the SSE 4.1+ extensions, which are used extensively during encoding.

Maybe you should have a look at PPBM5 Benchmark and specifically Benchmark Results

Dual Xeon systems with the i5-2690 may be about as fast as a single i7-3960X, which is overclocked to around 4.6 GHz, but just the CPU's are four times more expensive. Such a dual system is OK if you have a budget of over $ 10 K, while an i7-3930K or i7-3960X, both OC-ed to 4.6 GHZ is in the range of $ 5 - 7 K and performs equally good, sometimes even better because there is no latency between the CPU's.

I'm in the process of planning and building a new system. Maybe my considerations will help you make a choice, see PPBM6 Planning a new system or Videoguys Blog - Planning a new NLE system... part 1.

Last edited by Harm Millaard; April 10th, 2012 at 04:24 AM.
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Old April 10th, 2012, 04:09 AM   #5
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Re: CPU performance

Linux isn't used much by NLEs. most seem to be Windows or Mac. The Linux crowd seem to be all over Lightworks because it's proposing to be cross platform covering all three including Linux, so they'll now have the option of a professional NLE.
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Old April 13th, 2012, 09:25 PM   #6
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Re: CPU performance

Thanks Brian & Harm

There are 2 major flaws in what both of you wrote.

The Spec CPU tests are a set of standardized tests irrespective of the target operating systems so that a relative ranking of hardware performance can be made.

From The SPEC Organization

Quote:

SPEC's Background

The System Performance Evaluation Cooperative, now named the Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation (SPEC), was founded in 1988 by a small number of workstation vendors who realized that the marketplace was in desperate need of realistic, standardized performance tests. The key realization was that an ounce of honest data was worth more than a pound of marketing hype.

SPEC has grown to become one of the more successful performance standardization bodies with more than 60 member companies. SPEC publishes several hundred different performance results each quarter spanning a variety of system performance disciplines.

SPEC's Philosophy

The goal of SPEC is to ensure that the marketplace has a fair and useful set of metrics to differentiate candidate systems. The path chosen is an attempt to balance requiring strict compliance and allowing vendors to demonstrate their advantages. The belief is that a good test that is reasonable to utilize will lead to a greater availability of results in the marketplace.

The basic SPEC methodology is to provide the benchmarker with a standardized suite of source code based upon existing applications that has already been ported to a wide variety of platforms by its membership. The benchmarker then takes this source code, compiles it for the system in question and then can tune the system for the best results. The use of already accepted and ported source code greatly reduces the problem of making apples-to-oranges comparisons.

Harm:

what you have not realized is that the Xeon E5 sandybridge CPUs are a brand new generation of intel workstation/server platform as of March 2012. There are significant performance improvements with the new intel C602 chipset motherboards and e5-xxxx over the older xeons. I agree with your previous posts and findings about older dual Xeon x56xx systems. However what you have not considered is a dual Xeon E5-2687w is the current King of the hill workstation:

Intel Xeon E5-2687W in Asus Z9PE-D8 WS dual CPU workstation review - The Inquirer

or

Intel Xeon E5-2670 vs Core i7-3960X review - The Inquirer


These real world benchmarks mirror the relative rankings found in the Spec report.

Enjoy!


P.S. I am not interested in extreme over-clocking or liquid cooling to get maximum performance. Having a workstation that I can truly multitask on (ie render a project in the background and edit a new project at the same time), is reliable, and is upgradeable, is what I require.
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Old April 13th, 2012, 10:13 PM   #7
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Re: CPU performance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harm Millaard View Post
Maybe you should have a look at PPBM5 Benchmark and specifically Benchmark Results
Should I be looking at the H.264 BR column? Why do some computers render MPEG DVD slower than H.264 BR and others render it faster?
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Old April 20th, 2012, 04:35 AM   #8
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Re: CPU performance

See Background Information for an explanation of the different tests and what impacts performance.
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Old April 20th, 2012, 04:55 AM   #9
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Re: CPU performance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Turcotte View Post
Thanks Brian & Harm
Harm:

what you have not realized is that the Xeon E5 sandybridge CPUs are a brand new generation of intel workstation/server platform as of March 2012. There are significant performance improvements with the new intel C602 chipset motherboards and e5-xxxx over the older xeons. I agree with your previous posts and findings about older dual Xeon x56xx systems. However what you have not considered is a dual Xeon E5-2687w is the current King of the hill workstation:

Intel Xeon E5-2687W in Asus Z9PE-D8 WS dual CPU workstation review - The Inquirer

or

Intel Xeon E5-2670 vs Core i7-3960X review - The Inquirer


These real world benchmarks mirror the relative rankings found in the Spec report.

Enjoy!


P.S. I am not interested in extreme over-clocking or liquid cooling to get maximum performance. Having a workstation that I can truly multitask on (ie render a project in the background and edit a new project at the same time), is reliable, and is upgradeable, is what I require.
I have realized that the SB E is a new generation of CPU's, just like the i7-39xx. I also realize that most workstations are severely hampered by the use of ECC memory, their low clock speed, their lack of overclock-ability, their huge price etc. Again the links you provided do not show how well these kind of systems hold up when using PR, but do realize that the older generation 56xx could not hold up against the i7-9xx, even when overclocked, which has been made impossible by Intel for the new generation.

I also realize that I prefer to have a single i7-3930K overclocked to 4.6 GHZ than a dual i5-2687W at more than 8 times the price and forgetting about the higher cost of mobo, RAM etc. A dual i5-2687W may be about as fast (the future will tell) when editing in PR, but that does not justify the extremely lousy 'BFTB', bang-for-the-buck of such a system.
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