AIDA64 Engineer Tests
AIDA64 is FinalWire’s full 64-bit benchmark and test suite utilizing MMX, 3DNow! and SSE instruction set extensions, and will scale up to 32 processor cores. An enhanced 64-bit System Stability Test module is also available to stress the whole system to its limits. For legacy processors all benchmarks and the System Stability Test are available in 32-bit versions as well.
All of the benchmarks used in this test- Queen, Photoworxx, ZLib, and hash- rely on basic x86 instructions, and consume very little system memory while also being aware of Hyper-Threading, multi-processors, and multi-core processors. Of all the tests in this review, AIDA64 is the one that best isolates the processor’s performance from the rest of the system. While this is useful in that it more directly compares processor performance, readers should remember that virtually no “real world” programs will mirror these results.
The Queen and Photoworxx tests are synthetic benchmarks that iterate the function many times and over-exaggerate what the real-world performance would be like. The Queen benchmark focuses on the branch prediction capabilities and misprediction penalties of the CPU. It does this by finding possible solutions to the classic queen problem on a chessboard. At the same clock speed theoretically the processor with the shorter pipeline and smaller misprediction penalties will attain higher benchmark scores.
Like the Queen benchmark, the Photoworxx tests for penalties against pipeline architecture. The synthetic Photoworxx benchmark stresses the integer arithmetic and multiplication execution units of the CPU and also the memory subsystem. Due to the fact that this test performs high memory read/write traffic, it cannot effectively scale in situations where more than two processing threads are used, so quad-core processors with Hyper-Threading have no real advantage. The AIDIA64 Photoworxx benchmark performs the following tasks on a very large RGB image:
- Rotate90R (rotate 90 degrees CW)
- Rotate90L (rotate 90 degrees CCW)
- Random (fill the image with random colored pixels)
- RGB2BW (color to black & white conversion)
The 5960X acquits itself well here, turning in scores 10% higher than the 3960X at stock clocks and a startling 47% higher when overclocked. As we’ve seen before, Photoworxx is relatively insensitive to clock speed but does make effective use of more cores.
The ZLIB scores are compressed by the scale of the Hash scores, but the numbers give the 5960X a 17% better score than the 3960X. The real surprise here, though, are the Hash scores, where the 5960X returns performance much further above the 3960X than just two extra cores would lead you to expect. Its score of 6763 is almost 60% higher than that of the 3960X.