Processor Testing Methodology
Since I recently tested the Core i7-4770K against its Ivy Bridge predecessor, the Core i7-3770K, I have lots of recent test data to leverage. The only real change has been in AIDA 64, which has updated a few tests to better optimize them for Haswell. In this case I re-ran the benchmarks with the latest 3.00.2500 version.
Since the Core i5-4430 is a non-“K” CPU, the multiplier is locked. And Intel has removed the alternate overclocking mechanisms that appeared with Ivy Bridge. Although enthusiast motherboards will still let you increase the base clock with non-“K” processors, my bench system crashed if I raised the 100MHz clock to anything above 102MHz. So, no overclocking this time around.
As with Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge, the integrated GPU shares pipelines and cache with the CPU cores. For this review I used three different testing configurations:
CPU testing: integrated GPU disabled, discrete video card used. This frees up the cache and memory bandwidth to be used only by the CPU. I used the same Radeon HD6850 video card I’ve used previously testing the 4770K.
iGPU testing: Discrete video card removed, iGPU enabled. In this case the amount of memory dedicated to the iGPU was set at its maximum of 512MB.
- Game testing. Does a gamer need the 4770K? Or with the 4430 suffice? To answer this question, I ran both processors with a Radeon HD7970 GPU through a series of game benchmarks.
Intel Z77 Express Test Platform
- Motherboard: MSI Z77 MPower
- Processor: 3.5GHz Intel Core i7-3770K, 3.0GHz Intel Core i5-4430
- System Memory: 8GB DDR3-1600 (two 4GB DIMMs) at 9-9-9-27
- Primary Drive: Seagate ST3500 500GB drive
- Graphics Adapter: AMD Radeon HD6850, AMD Radeon HD7970
Benchmark Applications: CPU
- Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit
- Finalwire AIDA64 Extreme Edition v3.00.2500
- Futuremark PCMark 7
- Maxon CINEBENCH R11.5 64-Bit
- x264Bench HD 5.0
- Lightwave 9.6
- Autodesk Maya 2009
- Siemens Teamcenter Visualization Mockup
- SPECapc LightWave 3D v9.6
- Handbrake 0.96 video transcoding
- ArcSoft Video Converter 7 video transcoding
- Blender 3D rendering
- POV-Ray 3D rendering
Benchmark Applications: Integrated GPU / Gaming
- Aliens vs. Predator benchmark
- 3DMark 11
- Unigine Heaven 3.0
- Lost Planet 2 Benchmark
- Metro 2033 Benchmark (gaming only)
Let’s start the benchmarking with an AIDA64 run in the next section.