The Business Winstone 2004 suite from ZD Labs is an update to the application-based PC benchmark line we've been using for years. It still makes use of real-world application tests like word processing, spreadsheets, web browsing and formatting, as well as file compression, anti-virus scanning and email. A multi-tasking component has also been added, and the base requirements have been upgraded quite significantly. As usual, this suite of programs is run from a batch script that attempts to accurately emulate a business system load, and then supplies us with a final performance rating.
Intel has improved their Business Winstone standing with the latest LGA775 processors, but it's a nominal gain at best. One of the key elements is that the Pentium 4 560 does outpace the Pentium 4-3.4 GHz EE, and the 925X does provide a nice performance boost compared to the Pentium 4-3.4E GHz Prescott. Even so, AMD still holds all the cards in business application testing, and even the Athlon 64 3400+ still edges out the fastest from Intel.
Content Creation Winstone 2004 is another new update to the Winstone line, and also updates the base requirements and applications. We're still looking at an application-based test suite, which includes hot programs like Photoshop, Macromedia Director, LightWave, Wavelab, and many others. This new version also includes Windows Media Encoder 9, which means the AMD and Intel processor features are fully recognized and supported. This is a very demanding system benchmark, and makes a great comparison tool for our high-end testing and when comparing component performance levels using the latest multimedia software.
Also note is that the latest 1.0.1 update patch has enabled multi-processor and Hyper-Threading support in the LightWave section of the test.
Content Creation Winstone benchmarking shows the same basic trends as the Business scores, with the Pentium 4 560 pushing by both the Pentium 4-3.4 EE and 3.4E GHz models, while the enhanced 925X architecture also gives the advantage to LGA775 when comes to our Pentium 4-3.4 GHz Extreme Edition comparison. But again, the Athlon 64 competition proves to be a bit too tough, and these finish noticeably ahead of Intel's newest CPUs.