— 10:36 AM on March 2, 2012

Wow. Long week here in Damage Labs, and I'm pretty shattered as a result. We were working late last night, recording the podcast, which should be released over the weekend. Some good discussion on this latest one, I think.

On top of that, I've been working on a server-related review, logging long hours to get complex benchmarks like SPECjbb running properly and optimally tuned. I'm using almost entirely new hardware and software this time around, including the collector machine for SPECpower, so the setup work has taken days. The good news there is that I'm now producing valid results on multiple machines, so much of the toughest effort is behind me. Still ahead: running our virtualization benchmark and the addition of some hotly anticipated new arrivals from Austin. We'll have to see how this all works out in terms of publication timing, but I'm hoping we'll have some nice articles about this class of CPUs soon.

The rest of my work queue looks kind of insane, with too many projects in flight and none ready for publication. The Core i7-3820 is largely tested, but I need to overclock it and prep the article. My new GPU rigs are fully configured and waiting for my attention. The parts for new desktop CPU test rigs have largely arrived, as well. Also, we're cooking up something fun related to that MSI open-air case we showed you recently. I just don't know how much will get done before I'm off to another press event shortly.

One item of note: if you have suggestions for programs we could use as desktop CPU benchmarks, now is the time to offer them. We don't revamp our CPU suite all that often, since we like to build up lots of results for comparison, but the window is now open.

Some updates and new additions are already in the works, including a multithreaded code-compiling benchmark we've developed. We have new versions of MyriMatch and picCOLOR, old stalwarts whose authors have worked with us over time to optimize for new architectures and such. I'm open to additional suggestions, including perhaps a new Folding@home benchmark from notfred? (Hint, hint.) We're happy to consider particularly CPU-bound games to test. I think Skyrim has already earned a spot, along with BF3 perhaps, but I'm eager to hear your thoughts.

And yes, we will be going inside the second with our CPU game testing. In fact, I have some nifty new visualization tweaks I'd like to try. I think we can potentially offer a more complete and easier-to-read map of the frame latency picture. Should be interesting.

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