I have a feeling that today is going to be Atom-benchmarking day as we digest results coming from UMPCFever’s testing of the Aigo MID and now, some test results of a new MSI Wind PC (not notebook) that is based on the 1.33Ghz Atom (Z250) Silverthorne processor and not the low-cost Diamondvile part as you’d find in the MSI Wind notebook.
First point to note is that in this relatively open-enclosure design, the 1.33Ghz Atom doesn’t require active cooling. To achieve the same in a tightly enclosed MID will require some good engineering but its encouraging for those that like their devices to be silent.
There’s a full suite of test results too but the one I want to highlight is a PCMark 05 CPU result and comparison to the Eee PC running the Celeron at 630Mhz.
Atom 1.33Ghz: 1159 (Normalised 0.87/Mhz. Recalculated to 1.8Ghz, approx 1560)
Celeron 630Mhz: 997 (Normalised 1.57/Mhz Recalculated to 1Ghz, approx 1413)
This is a telling set of figures because it shows the result that we’ve been expecting and that is that, clock-for-clock, the Atom processors are less powerful than the older Celeron/Pentium devices but at 1.8Ghz, the Atom Silverthrone processor should be about 10% more powerful than a 900Mhz Celeron.
Is this good? Is this an advancement of processor technology? You might look at the results and say ‘No’ but there’s one important element that has to be taken into consideration. Power-usage. The 1.8Ghz Silverthorne/Poulsbo combo will return these figures with a platform TDP of about 4.5W. The Celeron at 900Mhz would require a platform with a 10W TDP. That’s a 50% improvement in platform efficiency and that’s exactly what we need to see for handheld Internet and productivity devices.