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Review: Powerlogix's Series 133 Dual 1GHz G4 Upgrade
Tests vs Original Dual G4/533 and Dual 1GHz MDD G4
By Mike
Published: 12/24/2002
Benchmark Test Results
Intro | Benchmarks  | Apps Tests | Game Tests | Installation | Specs/Design
Benchmark Tests

Benchmark tests were run with Xbench 1.0b3, Altivec Fractal Carbon demo 1.1.3 and CineBench 2000. (Latest versions as of this review date.). Of course benchmarks are less important than real-world applications and game tests, but many want to see them regardless. (The Apps tests page has results of tests with iMovie2, iTunes3 (OS X), Photoshop 7.0 and MPEG4 movie conversion. The game tests page includes results with popular 3D games like Quake3, Unreal Tournament, and Return to Castle Wolfenstein.)

XBench 1.0b3 Tests:

XBench Scores Comparison
Xbench compare

As a reminder, the MDD Dual 1GHz G4 had a Radeon 9000 Pro (64MB) graphics card, 768MB of DDR RAM, 167MHz (SDR) front-side bus. The Digital Audio had 1GB of PC133 RAM, 133MHz (SDR) front-side bus and Radeon 8500 (64MB) graphics card. The drive in the Digital Audio mac was heavily fragmented (I have no Jag compatible disk defragmenter unfortunately) which may have been a factor in the disk tests (as well as the MDD's ATA/100 vs ATA/66 interface).

Here's a complete table of XBench's detailed test scores. (I averaged the disk uncached R/W write scores to a single figure for random and sequential.)

Table of XBench Scores
Xbench compare

I had averaged the disk R/W scores (which are with 2 different test file sizes) as I was originally planning on graphing all the scores - but the resulting graph was so busy/cluttered I decided to post just a table of the numeric scores.

Just as a FYI - the 9000 Pro ATI card scored 7 points higher than the 8500 on the user interface test but appx. 2 points lower on the OpenGL 2 (tested w/PL dual 1GHz - compared to 8500 card scores noted above).

Fractal FPU Benchmark:
I used the freeware Altivec Fractal (Carbon) demo v1.1.3 program (available here) to compare FPU performance of the original Dual G4/533 system, with the Dual G4/1GHz Powerlogix upgrade, and a G4 Dual 1GHz Mirrored Drive Door (MDD) System. Default settings were used. (Note: MegaFlops/sec = Millions of Floating Point Operations per Second.)

Fractal Demo Results

Note: For some reason the first run (autorun) of the Fractal test with the Series 133 reported a low score (appx 2240 - less than a retest with only one CPU enabled). I saw this twice, even though both CPUs were detected and repeating the test showed scores many times higher. (I wrote Powerlogix about this and only noting it as a curiousity.)

CineBench 2000 v1.0 Results:
Since probably less than 1/2 of 1% of Mac users own Maxon's Cinema4D application, I use the freely available CineBench2000 benchmark. (Which does more than just a simple render of a scene - it also does shaded and wireframe model spins, shaded and wireframe "fly-throughs" of a scene to show graphics card and cpu performance, not just rendering times.) For more info see www.maxon.net/pages/download/benchmarks.html. For a full explaination of the benchmark and how to read the results, see this page.

All tests were run at the recommended 1024x768, millions color mode. Longer bars are faster.

CineBench 2000 Results

You can see the rendering scores benefited from using both CPUs (Cinema's engine uses both for rendering)

You can search for other Mac system/CPU/Video card CineBench 2000 results at my Mac Game/Video card performance database. If you download CineBench 2000, please enter your results.

Time to Boot OS X 10.2.3
Although how long it takes to boot isn't a concern for me personally (at all), I've had several requests in the past to note this, so I'm including it here. (Not meaning to offend anyone, but since I only boot a system once a day typically except during testing, the time it takes to do so isn't that imporant really.) The MDD system surprised me at how long it takes to start loading the OS after the startup tone (maybe this one isn't typical).

Time to Boot X

The next page has results from real world applications. Or you may use the links below to jump to a specific page.
( For comparisons to other CPU Card upgrades and systems see the site list of CPU Card Reviews and Systems page.)

Index of PL 1GHz Upgrade Review Pages

Intro | Benchmarks  | Apps Tests | Game Tests | Installation | Specs/Design

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