AMD Phenom II X4 980 Black Edition Review



Product: AMD Phenom II X4 980 Black Edition
Company: AMD
Author: James Prior
Editor: Charles Oliver
Date: May 24th, 2011

CPU Performance Tests

These tests are designed to highlight the different performance aspects of the processors, for different workloads and features. Some are single threaded, others multi-threaded. Some benefit more from on-die cache, other from pure CPU clock frequency. The Phenom II X6 1100T was benched at stock 3.3GHz with Turbo enabled, and overclocked at 4GHz for all 6 cores (no Turbo). The Core i7 920 was benched at stock 2.66GHz with HyperThreading and Turbo modes enabled, and overclocked with Turbo disabled to 4GHz. The Phenom II X4 980 is benched at stock 3.7GHz speed and at 4.2GHz overclocked speed.

7-Zip 9.20 x64

Time to compress 24 4000x3000 .jpg files to a single archive, on the SSD. 7Zip file format used with 4 threads and maximum compression level. Results in time elapsed (seconds), and faster (lower) times are better.

7Zip likes more cores, scaling out with high CPU utilization - using a core per file to compress at a time. Intel's architecture works well with 7Zip.

WinRAR 4.0 x64

Time to compress 24 4000x3000 .jpg files to a single archive, on the SSD. RAR file format used with 4 threads and maximum compression level. Results in time elapsed (seconds), and faster (lower) times are better.

WinRAR doesn't scale as well as 7Zip for CPU utiliztion on AMD CPUs, staying mostly under 50% regardless of number of cores. More cores helps, as do higher clocks, but not as much as being an Intel CPU.

Advanced Encryption Standard

Results of AIDA64 AES benchmark test, higher scores are better.

A surprise from the AMD boys here, strong AES benchmark test performance. This test apparently doesn't scale with more than four cores but does with clock speed, handing the first win to the 980BE.

SiSoft Sandra - Arithmetic CPU Performance Test

SiSoft Sandra 2011 (build 1750) results of Arithmetic module CPU performance benchmark. Higher results are better.

Nice linear scaling for clock speed and core count for the AMD CPUs. This synthetic performance tests clearly shows the Intel architecture advantage.

SiSoft Sandra - Cyprographic CPU Performance Test

SiSoft Sandra 2011 (build 1750) results of Cryptographic module CPU performance benchmark. Higher results are better

Again more linear clockspeed and core count scaling for performance on the AMD CPUs, and again a win for AMD over Intel. Note that all architectures lack Advanced Vector extension (AVX) support, which greatly accelerates performance in this test.

WPrime

A multi-threaded benchmark test using recursive square root calculations to 1M and 1024M digits. Times to complete are recorded. Lower times are better.

This test also shows nice linear scaling of core count and clock speed for the AMD CPU's. Despite a GHz clock speed deficit the Core i7 beats the 980BE, and nearly matches the overclocked hexacore when overclocked.

FluidMark

PhysX CPU Benchmark of 6 emitters, 60k particles, multi-core forced CPU PhysX mode at 1920x1080 resolution with no postFX, no AA. Higher results are better.

Surprisngly low but very repeatable result for the Phenom II X4 980 in this test. Overclocking yielded very little increase in performance.