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Editor: Julio Franco

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Application Performance

Microsoft Excel 2007 seems to favor the Intel processors and as such provides a rather one sided battle. The Phenom II X4 965 is beaten by both the Core 2 Quad Q9400 and Q8400 processors, while the Core i5 650 is also faster. The Phenom II X4 965 is just able to beat the Core i3 540 which matched the performance of the Phenom II X4 925 processor. The Phenom II X2 555 was by far the slowest processor in this program, losing to the Core 2 Duo E7500.

Using WinRAR this time we have conducted our own benchmark by recording the time in seconds it takes to compress a single large file as well as multiple smaller files. The Core i5 750 is by far the best performing processor here, followed by the Phenom II X4 965. The Phenom II X4 965 was a fraction faster than the Core i5 650, while the slower Phenom II X4 925 beat the Core 2 Quad Q9400 and Q8400 processors.

The Phenom II X3 720 took 23% longer to compress the 700MB file when compared to the Phenom II X4 965, while the Phenom II X2 555 took 36% longer. The slowest processors here were the Core i3 540 and Core 2 Duo E7500. The Core i3 540 took 281 seconds to complete the task, making it 11% slower than the similarly priced Phenom II X4 925.

The Photoshop CS4 benchmarks don't reveal much, though this is another popular program that appears to prefer Intel processors. The Core i5 750 was the fastest processor tested, beating the Core i5 650 by a small margin. The Phenom II X4 965 was 7% slower when comparing the HardwareHeaven benchmark data.

The program clearly relies more on processor clock speed than numbers of cores. This is evident when looking at the Phenom II X2 555 results, which placed this processor well ahead of the triple-core Phenom II X3 720 processor, giving it a 10% performance advantage. This was also the case when comparing the Phenom II X2 555 to the Phenom II X4 925.