Benchmarks - Synthetic
Sandra is a software collection of synthetic benchmarks that will give us a basic idea as to what a system is capable of. It should be noted that SiSoft numbers change depending on what hardware is being tested. These were recorded using Sandra Professional Version 20.18.2014.2
One of the most difficult things about doing reviews is finding some kind of common ground to establish a benchmark on so that when we say something is good our readers know it is based on something they can try themselves. In the case of audio reproduction there are too many factors to consider such as hearing quality, sound equipment (speakers) and room dimensions so we are turning to the RightMark Audio Analyzer to give us a set of audio specs. We will then use those numbers to determine what kind of audio quality you can expect.
This test was performed using a loopback cable which is basically a jack that connects the analog line-out plug back into the analog line-in. That way we can remove almost all of the variables and concentrate on what is actually being reproduced and recorded.
Frequency response (from 40 Hz to 15 kHz), dB: +0.33, -0.13
Noise level, dB (A): -37.1
Dynamic range, dB (A): 80.0
THD, %: 0.010
THD + Noise, dB (A): -24.2
IMD + Noise, %: 6.067
Stereo crosstalk, dB:-95.6
IMD at 10 kHz, %: 0.012
General performance Average
Color coding indicates good to bad, Bright green = Excellent - Bright Red = Poor - Black = Good
Synthetic performance never really tells the entire story, but is a good indication of what the system would probably be capable of doing under the right conditions.
The Rightmark audio benchmark is a great tool for exposing audio specs for the various chips and software and read much like if you were buying an amplifier or sound system for your house. Strangely enough there was a large amount of distortion in the audio signal and reduced overall sound quality. This could have been a flaw in the audio processor or just bad drivers. What you can take away from this is that the sound quality is "Average". The results are color coded to help indicate the quality of each of the numbers.
In terms of performance we have two motherboards using the Core i7 4790K and offer up similar performance. The older motherboards used in these tests have less CPU power but offer better multimedia performance. That could be a product of age but gives us a nice cross section of performance over time.