Media encoding and editing
x264 HD benchmark
This benchmark tests performance with one of the most popular H.264 video encoders, the open-source x264. The results come in two parts, for the two passes the encoder makes through the video file. I've chosen to report them separately, since that's typically how the results are reported in the public database of results for this benchmark
From a CPU architecture standpoint, I'm astounded to see the Core i5-661 nearly matching the performance of the Core 2 Quad Q9400. That's, frankly, mind-blowing. From a price-competitive standpoint, though, both Clarkdale variants perform poorly here. The Athlon II X4 630 is cheaper and faster than both.
Windows Live Movie Maker 14 video encoding
For this test, I used Windows Live Movie Maker to transcode a 30-minute TV show, recorded in 720p .wtv format on my Windows 7 Media Center system, into a 320x240 WMV-format video format appropriate for mobile devices.
Again, these are amazing results for a dual-core processor. Were it not for the existence of similarly priced quad-cores...
LAME MT audio encoding
LAME MT is a multithreaded version of the LAME MP3 encoder. LAME MT was created as a demonstration of the benefits of multithreading specifically on a Hyper-Threaded CPU like the Pentium 4. Of course, multithreading works even better on multi-core processors.
Rather than run multiple parallel threads, LAME MT runs the MP3 encoder's psycho-acoustic analysis function on a separate thread from the rest of the encoder using simple linear pipelining. That is, the psycho-acoustic analysis happens one frame ahead of everything else, and its results are buffered for later use by the second thread. That means this test won't really use more than two CPU cores.
We have results for two different 64-bit versions of LAME MT from different compilers, one from Microsoft and one from Intel, doing two different types of encoding, variable bit rate and constant bit rate. We are encoding a massive 10-minute, 6-second 101MB WAV file here.
This is an ideal test case for Clarkdale, and the i5-661 comes out on top.