PCMark benchmarks computer’s performance in office and office-related applications. The overall score is calculated by the formula: PCMark Score = 87 x (the geometric mean of the basic tests), where the geometric mean is calculated as (Result 1 x Result 2 x…) divided by the number of results. The Vantage version focuses on typical work scenarios rather than on computer components as in the earlier versions.
- The Memories scenario benchmarks the system’s performance when working with a digital media archive containing photographs and videos. We disable it when we benchmark notebooks with integrated graphics cores.
- Playing and encoding high-definition video is the load of the TV and Movies scenario.
- The Gaming scenario is about the computer’s performance in 3D games.
- The Music scenario is about encoding audio files of various formats.
- The Communications scenario emulates Web surfing, reading emails and using IP telephony.
- The Productivity test is a simple scenario which emulates the use of typical office applications.
The Core 2 Duo T9300 processor based on the Penryn core is a top-end solution as it proves in the test. Despite the fact that PCMark Vantage can make use of SLI technology, there is no dramatic improvement in terms of gaming performance. When the notebook switches to its battery, its CPU clock rate is reduced to 1.2GHz to save power, which affects the test results. The FSB Frequency Switching technology doesn’t seem to affect the notebook’s performance, though.
The new version of SYSMark is intended to reveal a computer’s performance under different types of load. It simulates a user who is solving practical tasks in a few popular applications. The benchmark issues a few ratings that are indicative of the system performance under different loads.
The E-Learning test emulates the creation of an educational website with diverse media content. This script makes use of the following applications: Adobe Illustrator CS2, Adobe Photoshop CS2, Macromedia Flash 8 and Microsoft PowerPoint 2003. The Video Creation scenario is about creating video clips using special effects. The clips are combined out of several sources, including static images. The result is prepared in two formats: HD and for online viewing. The following software is utilized here: Adobe After Effects 7, Adobe Illustrator CS2, Adobe Photoshop CS2, Microsoft Windows Media Encoder 9, and Sony Vegas 7. The next test, Productivity, emulates typical office activities such as sending e-mail, processing data, managing a project, working with documents. Applications employed: Microsoft Excel 2003, Microsoft Outlook 2003, Microsoft PowerPoint 2003, Microsoft Word 2003, Microsoft Project 2003, and WinZip 10.0. And finally, the 3D script from SYSMark 2007 is about creating an architectural presentation including a photorealistic image of the building and a clip with a flyby of it. Two applications are used: AutoDesk 3ds Max 8 and SketchUp 5.
3DMark uses its own rendering engine to create a set of 3D scenes that load the graphics subsystem in various ways.
New in our notebook tests, 3DMark Vantage features a new game engine with support for DirectX 10. This benchmarking suite offers four presets (Entry, Performance, High, Extreme) for testing different graphics cards. It supports Windows Vista only and includes four tests, two for the CPU and two for the graphics card. The graphics card tests show one open scene and one closed environment. The scenes of the CPU tests have a lot of moving objects (small planes flying along specific trajectories). Six more tests are designed to test specific parameters of the graphics subsystem.
Just as promised by ASUS, the G80S scores 8,000 points in 3DMark 2006 when you enable SLI technology. That’s the best result of all the notebooks we have tested in our labs. When SLI is disabled, the performance is twice lower. And when the notebook works on its battery, Nvidia’s PowerMizer technology cuts the results by half once again.
It is only in F.E.A.R. that SLI technology improves performance, even at the low resolution.
Battery life is just as important a parameter of a notebook as its performance. The notebook’s battery life was measured with MobileMark 2007. We disabled Standby and Hibernate modes for the test.
The first scenario, Productivity, emulates the user’s working in typical office applications. The load is not constant as the user is frequently distracting from his work. The second scenario measures the notebook’s battery life when the user is reading text from the screen in Adobe Reader. The third scenario is about DVD playback in InterVideo WinDVD.
As you can see, there is no sense in turning SLI off for working in ordinary applications because the battery life doesn’t change much then. And the battery life itself is very short. The notebook can barely last 1 hour on its battery. On the other hand, you could hardly expect anything else from a gaming notebook with a large display. It should be rather viewed as a computer with an integrated UPS rather than a truly portable device.
And finally we measured the temperature of the notebook’s surfaces after it had run 3DMark 2006 for half an hour. The ambient temperature was 23°C. The CPU temperature was reported by CPUID Hardware Monitor.
The dual cooling system does its job well. The notebook’s temperature is quite normal. It is unlikely to overheat.