In the world of rapidly grown and diverse technologies, the term ‘benchmark’ has evolved as a very popular and in a sense important thing. I find it very obvious that if you are reading this article, then you must be confused about benchmarking and are thinking how to benchmark my PC in your mind may be. I would tell you to relax and not to worry about it. At the end of this writing, you will know it all about benchmarking and will be kind of an expert on benchmarking PC.
Table of Contents
What is the Benchmark?
If you search the word benchmark in Wikipedia; Wikipedia says, “In computing, a benchmark is an act of running a computer program, a set of programs, or other operations, in order to assess the relative performance of an object, normally by running a number of standard tests and trials against it.”
Isn’t it confusing? Ok, don’t be scared. I am here to simplify it for you.
Basically benchmarking is running some software tests on some hardware devices. And the tests intentionally mirror ranged types of tasks that it might perform in real-world usage also.
So, you can assume that a CPU in a pc will be subjected to some complex mathematical tests, and to measure how fast it may compress or encode data. Again a hard drive would be tested on its speed in which it can write a single and large file as well as millions of very small files. Benchmarks for the graphics card might be measured by things like the frame rate achieved while rendering various numbers of objects at different levels of complexity and resolutions.
The results mean nothing on their own or without comparisons. When you might have subjected two products to the same type of tests, then you can compare the results and can judge which device offers better performance according to your demand.
In simply saying, a benchmark is a test that measures the performance of some hardware or software or computer. These tests are used to compare how well some product might do with other products. When benchmarks are compared, the higher the values of the results are, the faster the pc component, hardware, software, or total computer is.
Pros of Benchmark
Usually, running benchmarks on a PC or a laptop enables users to evaluate the overall performance or the performance of individual components, to identify the potential bottlenecks, and to select the effective system upgrades.
You can consider the benchmarks mostly useful as a guide to hardware performance. They are specifically good at showing how performances may improve from one generation to the next and can help you measure value for money of some product; for, you can easily see how it might be compared to similarly-priced alternatives.
Again it is said arguably that benchmarks are best used when you have some specific requirements, like gaming or video editing or anything else that usually needs plenty of power to drive.
Moreover, you can compare the benchmarks of different hardware while buying them sometimes. I am not saying that they are the be all and end all like thing. But you can surely gain an overall idea about the particular component from benchmarks.
Cons of Benchmark
Sometimes, people think that benchmark is the ultimate standard and that idea is in a sense horrible in some instances. It is a very common occurrence that the benchmark of some hardware component is very good, but its real-world usage is not so good. So you have to keep it in your mind that benchmark is not the ultimate thing; it just gives you the idea of the performance of some hardware.
How to Benchmark My PC – Total System
As I said earlier, benchmarking is basically running a computer through some predetermined tests or program operations to measure its overall performance. There are many ways to benchmark a PC, with particular methods focusing on the PC as a whole; or on the specific components, such as the graphics card, CPU, or storage. Normally, benchmarking methods basically fall into one of two categories; called Synthetic or Real World benchmarks.
Synthetic benchmarks are an excellent method to compare your PC to others with the help of using an objective score. On the other hand, Real World benchmarks are more useful to tell you how well your PC performs with some actual software.
When you are willing to start any benchmarking, you want to make sure that your PC must be in the best possible shape.
Before beginning benchmarking-
- You should update all your drivers; I must tell you that it’s not compulsory but is for the betterment of your device.
- You must disable all of your unnecessary startup programs.
- Turn of your Pc’s automatic updates.
- Then finally restart your computer
Moreover, before running any benchmarks, you should consider different hardware factors as well as software factors, to avoid serious potential damage to your device system and to ensure accurate results. Some benchmarks may put notable stress on the specific components sometimes, so you really have to ensure that all of those components are incorrect and good working order, properly cooled if it is necessary, and receiving enough power. You don’t want the applications that might be running in the background to interfere or collide with the benchmark, so shut them down while you are benchmarking.
Before beginning benchmarking, you should decide why you’re benchmarking in the first place or what you want to benchmark exactly. If you’re interested in gaming, the most important component to benchmark in your total PC is your GPU. If you’re interested in video editing or animation, you’re probably most interested in your CPU benchmarking. Again maybe you want to benchmark your whole system. Whatever you want to benchmark, you can do it very easily. There is much software available to do it.
Some of The Software are-
- SiSoft’s Sandra
- Unigines Valley and Heaven
- AS SSD benchmark and so on.
Some of them are for the whole system benchmarking test or may be for various individual hardware components’ benchmark test. You have to install some of these after downloading or don’t have to with some of these.
Benchmark Your Total PC:
You can use the software Novabench. It is very popular, free benchmarking software that’s been around quite a time now. You just have to download it, and then hit the ‘Test’ button, and it will run various tests over a couple of minutes. It gives an overall score and individual hardware measurements for different component performance. It has a very cool feature that is, to submit your results and can compare them with other user’s results.
PCMark, PassMark, SiSoft Sandra etc. software is also regarded as very good ways to measure overall PC performances. You can choose any one of them which you prefer.
Benchmark the Components Separately
As I said earlier, you can benchmark individual hardware components separately also.
You can do the floating point math test which describes the processor’s ability to perform a series of basic mathematical functions and calculations, the compression test which describes processor’s ability to compress a huge amount of data, and the single core test which mostly focus on single core performance. All of these tests can be easily done using PassMark or PCMark or Geekbench software.
You may do 2D graphics tests which mainly focus on drawing, scaling, fonts, elements in a user interface performance and their frame rate speed; and 3D graphics tests which mainly involve the rendering of huge 3D objects on the screen, at different complexity, including various details, and more, as well as testing different APIs. These tests can be done using Heaven benchmark or 3DMark tools.
Two types of tests can be done. They are – Memory Speed Per Access Step Size and Memory Speed Per Block Size. The tests are to measure the access speed of memory of different sizes. These can be done by using PerformanceTest application or Prima95 and so on.
You might do two tests; sequential tests that refer to large files being stored in a single drive, and random tests describe how the drive performs when lots of data are stored randomly in the drive. These tests can be done by using CrystalDiscMark (SSD and hard drive) or SSD benchmark (for SSD).
Understanding benchmark results
It is very important to understand the result of benchmarking tests. From the tests, you will get different scores of individual performances. On the internet, there is given many scores of the performances of different computers or their various components. You just have to compare and judge how your computer actually is. Moreover, applications like Novabench, PerformanceTest include the feature to compare between the user’s devices. You can try that also if you feel comfortable. The choice is yours anyway.
I hope that you have got whatever you came here to seek. Benchmarking is sometimes considered as an important test; but remember, it is not the ultimate standard. It is as good as getting some idea about some device or its components. Never rely on it blindly; rather use and enjoy its benefits. I am confident that now ‘how to benchmark my PC’ is not unknown and hard to you. You can do it easily.
So wishing you good luck, I would like to conclude here.