The results obtained in PCMark Vantage are pretty illustrative. In patterns with heavy GPU utilization GeForce 9400 based system demonstrates way better performance. Among them are, of course, Gaming and Memories patterns, where the GPU is also involved into digital image processing. In all other tests we do not see that big of a performance difference: ION platform wins in TV&Movies and Music multimedia patterns, while more typical nettop application involving office and networking tasks runs better on an all-Intel system.
To estimate the graphics subsystems performance, we resorted to Futuremark 3DMark06 benchmark. Of course, it is evident that GeForce 9400 will be beyond any competition here. However, we are mostly interested in absolute rather than relative values:
GeForce 9400 results look very impressive especially against the background of GMA950. In fact, 1200 points in 3DMark06 is a very low score that makes us question the system’s ability to run even the simplest 3D games. However, Nvidia marketing people tried to convince us that Nvidia ION was quite fit for gaming, so we had to see how it would perform in real 3D. Especially, since not only the GPU, but also the Atom 230 processor could become the main bottlenecks here.