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Sharky Extreme : CPU Reviews & Articles July 25, 2007

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    AMD Athlon 64 3400+ Processor Review
    By Vince Freeman :  January 6, 2004

    Quake 3 Arena Performance

    Quake 3: Arena is an oldie but a goldie when it comes to gaming benchmarks and its design really shows off some of the advantages of the Pentium 4 and Athlon 64 models. Quake 3 is both floating-point intensive and has support for SIMD optimizations (MMX, 3DNow! and SSE), making it a great fit for processor testing. It also happens to scale nicely to faster CPUs, video cards and motherboards, and Quake 3 performance is still used as a barometer for many CPU and 3D video card purchases.

    Quake 3 testing is performed starting with High Quality settings, then racking in-game detail settings to maximum, and a 1024x768 resolution, using release 1.30, along with the standard "demo Four".

    Quake 3 benchmarking may yield high framerates at only 1024x768, but this helps provide a nice separation graph for processor comparisons. The Athlon 64 3400+ once again takes out the Pentium 4-3.2 GHz, making it best in class, but the Athlon 64 FX-51 just squeezes by into first place. This is by no means a resounding victory, and it's amazing how close the Athlon 64 3400+ actually comes to winning.

    Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory Performance

    Return to Castle Wolfenstein is a good system benchmark, but we're giving the nod to the updated version: Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory. This game has made a few revisions to the basic RtCW design, as well as solidifying the features support. The setup is the same as Quake 3, with a 1024x768 resolution, and High quality defaults with in-game detail settings at maximum. We have used a custom demo taken from the Railgun game area, along with plenty of MP participants. This is one tough demo test, so expect the framerates to sink below those of Quake 3, and give our processors a much tougher workload.

    Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory provides another tight finish between the mainstream processors, with the Athlon 64 3400+ edging out the Pentium 4-3.2 GHz in a photo finish. Another close race was between the Athlon 64 processors, and once again, the Athlon 64 FX-51 came out slightly ahead. We don't expect the Athlon 64 3400+ to outpace the more powerful Athlon 64 FX-51, but the relative proximity in many benchmarks is a real surprise.

    Comanche 4 Benchmark

    The Comanche 4 benchmark from Novalogic gives us an opportunity to use an actual flight sim for performance testing. Flight sims are notorious for their CPU-dependence, and this makes the Comanche 4 benchmark potentially a better CPU test than it is for 3D video cards. The reliance on the CPU shows itself off in the benchmark, and even the slightest difference in framerates could pay off in significantly enhanced game framerates. For our processor comparison, all testing has been performed at 1024x768, 32-bit with audio disabled.

    Comanche 4 puts a real toll on the processor, and although this is a benchmark notorious for tight races, the chart illustrates the differences quite clearly. The Athlon 64 3400+ gives the Pentium 4-3.2 GHz another spanking, and although the Athlon 64 FX-51 takes the crown, AMD's newest CPU keeps the race extremely close.

    Page 1 Athlon 64 3400+: High End for the Mainstream
    Page 2 Performance and Test Systems
    Page 3 Business & CC Winstone 2004 and MPEG-2 Encoding
    Page 4 MPEG-2 Encoding & SiSoft SANDRA 2004 Performance
    Page 5 PCMark Pro 2004 Performance
  • Page 6 Quake 3, Wolfenstein: ET, and Comanche 4 Performance
    Page 7 Unreal Tournament 2003 & X2: Demo Performance
    Page 8 3DMark 2003, AquaMark 3 & GunMetal Performance
    Page 9 Benchmark Analysis, Value and Conclusion

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