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Performance in Office Applications

For our performance tests in office applications we used SYSmark 2004 and Business Winstone 2004 test packages.

Business Winstone test emulates the user’s work in the following popular apps: Microsoft Access 2002, Microsoft Excel 2002, Microsoft FrontPage 2002, Microsoft Outlook 2002, Microsoft PowerPoint 2002, Microsoft Project 2002, Microsoft Word 2002, Norton AntiVirus Professional Edition 2003 and WinZip 8.1. The obtained result is pretty natural: all these applications do not support multi-threading that is why Athlon 64 X2 is just a little faster than its single-core fellow, Athlon 64 4000+. This small performance advantage we saw is most likely to be coming from the enhanced memory controller of the Toledo core rather than from the second core the CPU acquired.

However, everyday office work may sometimes require a few applications working simultaneously. The results below show if dual-core AMD CPUs turn out more efficient in this case:

Here we are measuring the performance in Microsoft Outlook and Internet Explorer, while there are files being copied in the background. However, as you can see from the diagram below, file copying is not such a complicated task, so the dual-core architecture provides no advantages here.

The next benchmark is a little bit harder. We have a number of files being archived in the background by Winzip utility, while the user is working in Excel and Word. This time dual-core architecture shows its best. Athlon 64 X2 4800+ working at 2.4GHz clock rate outperforms not only Athlon 64 4000+ but also a single-core Athlon 64 FX-55 working at 2.6GHz.

As the tasks in the background become more complex, dual-core architecture proves more and more efficient. This time the test is emulating the user’s work in Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Project, Microsoft Access, Microsoft PowerPoint, Microsoft FrontPage and WinZip, while there is antivirus software working in the background. Here the applications manage to load both Athlon 64 X2 cores pretty heavily, and the result doesn’t keep you waiting for long. As we see, dual-core processor appears 1.5 times faster than the single-core on working at the same frequency.

 
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