The Intel Pentium 4 1.7GHz. Processor
The "Hyper Pipelined" CPU takes it up a notch

By Dave Altavilla - April 24 2001

Easing into things here, we have SiSoft's Sandra benchmark.

Benchmarks at 1.7GHz. and beyond
Making it look easy

Sandra CPU 1.7G

Sandra CPU 1.9G

Sandra Multimedia 1.7G

Sandra Multimedia 1.9G

Sandra Memory Test 1.7G

Sandra Memory Test 1.9G

The 1.7GHz. Pentium 4 shows itself to be significantly faster than the reference 1.2GHz. Athlon system in the Sandra suite but really only in two main areas.  It is well known that the memory bandwidth of the Intel "Quad Data Rate" architecture along with PC800 RDRAM, is a combination that is hard to beat.  Furthermore, this version of Sandra incorporates the all new SSE2 instructions in its Multimedia Test, so clearly the P4 will shine there as well, since the Athlon doesn't support it. 

On a side note, we did not run our 1.33GHz. Athlon test system in this run of benchmarks, however we will include it in all tests moving forward in this review.  Let's move out to more stringent testing.    

Content Creation and Business Winstone 2001:

Here the Pentium 4 doesn't look all that inspiring frankly, against the Athlon at a much lower clock speed.  There are a number of reasons for this.  First and foremost, this benchmark suite is heavily IO intensive.  That is to say that it is less demanding of compute intensive functions and more demanding of system and user response time.  Here you can see that the 1.7G P4 is hardly faster than even its 1.5G sibling.  We ran these tests several times to check for variances but came back with the same results within a small percentage window. 

A note on Sysmark 2001:
Due to technical issues with this benchmark suite, we were unable to incorporate this series of tests in our review.  However, we do encourage you to check out Anandtech's Sysmark 2001 test of the Intel Pentium 4 1.7GHz. processor.  Here you'll see the core strength of the Pentium 4 with its excellent memory bandwidth and multitasking capabilities, propel it into the lead. 

Sysmark 2001 uses many of the same type of productivity and content creation applications that Winstone does.  However, Sysmark 2001 focuses on performance under a heavy load with multi-tasking, much the same way an end user would run their desktop.  How many times have you run only Adobe Photo Shop and nothing else?  Perhaps you were checking email and burning a CD at the same time.  It is this type of environment that Sysmark 2001 tries to emulate.  Since the time of our testing for this article, we have become much more comfortable with Sysmark 2001 and will be incorporating it in CPU and Motherboard reviews in the future.

More "Pro" Testing with SPEC viewperf and 3DMark 2001!