Benchmarks: HD Playback
The above results measure the average CPU usage when playing the first 5 minutes of the movie Star Trek 2009 in 1080p. The higher this number the less likely the system is going to be able to provide smooth consistent frame rates. The Gigabyte GA-GC230D, which is unable to play HD content, gets hammered when playing the movie, with 80% CPU utilization as the 945G chipset is unable to assist the processor.
The Asrock Ion 330HT-BD, which features the dual-core Atom 330 processor, benefits most from the Ion chipset, which helps reduce the average CPU utilization down to just 14%. This not only frees up the Atom 330 processor, but it means that the Asrock Ion 330HT-BD is able to play 1080p content without a problem. However please note that the media player must support GPU acceleration, as the Atom 330 processor alone cannot handle HD content.
The x264 HD Benchmark 3.0 uses a 720p sample file. Further, GPU acceleration is not used as this is a CPU-only benchmark. As you can see, the Atom 230 processor managed just 6.3fps, while the Asrock Ion 330HT-BD (Atom 330) was slightly faster with 10.2fps. Neither processor is capable of delivering the required frame rate for smooth playback.
The Athlon II X4 600e processor was capable of delivering 49fps on its own, while the Core i5 750 managed 68fps.