Benchmarking Mathematica on Core i7-980X

Mathematica can be used to benchmark a machine by testing performance of methods relevent to Mathematica’s operation. One method generates a text report while another generates a graphical comparison to other machines. Here are the results (Mathematica 7.0.1.0) for a Core i7-980X with 12GiB 1600MHz RAM. Unfortunately, my Mathematica only seems to be licensed for four cores despite this machine having 12 hardware threads. Consequently quite a bit of this machine’s power is ignored by Mathematica.

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. patrick.scully

    Mathematica may see only four of your logical processors, but you can run more than one instance of Mathematica.

    When running the benchmark, you should run three (3) instances of Mathematica to fully exercise your 12 logical threads. Then, to recognize what you've accomplished, ADD UP the benchmark scores for those three instances. This sum should be about 130% of the benchmark score achieved by running just one instance of Mathematica, illustrating the extra squirt of efficiency you gain by having a multithreaded processor.

    I achieved just this result when I ran two instances of the Mathematica benchmark on my AVA Direct laptop, which can execute 8 logical threads in 12gb of main memory.

  2. patrick.scully

    I just updated our laptop with an i7 980x. I manually set the number of kernels, using the Preferences:Parallel menu tree, to 12 — one for each of the 980's hardware threads.

    I achieved a stellar result on the MathematicaMark benchmark: 22.9. Without hyperthreading (kernels=6) the result was still 18.3. By comparison, my older 2x Opteron 285 system (4 cores total) achieved only 5.6 — and that result is still superior to all the comparative systems on the default BenchmarkReport.

  3. Kent

    P.Scully, despite manually increasing the number of kernels a max of four ever run concurrently. This is probably a restriction of the home use license. have you tried Mathematica 8 yet? Sounds like you have less restrictive license and it would be interesting to know how your score compares to the update I posted today. Thank you.

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