Performance - Dhrystone | Whetstone
Setup your monitor
Before playing games, setting up your monitor's contrast & brightness levels is a very important thing to do. I realized recently that a lot of you guys have set up your monitor improperly. How do we know this? Because we receive a couple of emails every now and then telling us that a reader can't distinguish between the benchmark charts (colors) in our reviews. We realized, if that happens, your monitor is not properly setup.
This simple test pattern is evenly spaced from 0 to 255 brightness levels, with no profile embedded. If your monitor is correctly set up, you should be able to distinguish each step, and each step should be roughly visually distinct from its neighbors by the same amount. As well, the dark-end step differences should be about the same as the light-end step differences. Finally, the first step should be completely black.
DhryStone CPU test
We make use of a multi-threaded Dhrystone test from SiSoftware Sandra, which is basically a suite of arithmetic and string manipulating programs. Since the whole program should be really small, it fits into the processor cache. It can be used to measure two aspects, both the processor's speed as well as the optimizing capabilities of the compiler. The resulting number is the number of executions of the program suite per second.
So then, let me first explain how and what we will be testing and comparing in this article. Due to the nature of changes in our benchmark software we'll try and add many processors per benchmark title for you to compare to.
First up, The SANDRA DhryStone and Whetstone test. These two tests are pure unadulterated 100% CPU tests that run completely within the CPU + cache memory itself. A perfect test to see the general efficiency per core. Though one of the oldest, Dhrystone remains a simple yet extremely accurate and effective way to show you RAW CPU processing performance making it a very good indicator. The rest of the processors are in the chart just for scaling.
Your main focus should be two sets of red bars:
Dark Red -- P55 UD5 | 870 overclocked to 4.1 GHz
Light Red -- P55 UD5 | 870 default BIOS settings
Orange -- other P55 motherboards with same processor and memory
The Whetstone benchmark is a synthetic benchmark for evaluating the performance of computers. It was initially written in Algol 60, back in 1972. The Whetstone benchmark originally measured computing power in units of kilo-Whetstone Instructions Per Second (kWIPS). This was later changed to Millions of Whetstone Instructions Per Second (MWIPS).
The Whetstone benchmark primarily measures floating-point arithmetic performance. A similar benchmark for integer and string operations thus is the Dhrystone. The new Lynnfield processors take a bit of a hit with this test.