benchmark: 386/20 vs SparcStation 1

Paul De Bra debra at alice.UUCP
Mon Jun 4 02:38:07 AEST 1990

In article <15105 at cit-vax.Caltech.Edu> tim at cit-vax.UUCP (Timothy L. Kay) writes:
>I just ran my ray tracer on my 386 and a SparcStation 1.  The 386 is
>20 MHz with a 20 MHz 80387.  The SparcStation 1 is not a 1+, so it
>runs at 20 MHz.  I used gcc on the 386, and cc on the SS1.
>I found that the SS1 is about 8 times as fast as the 386.  Does this
>fit with others' experiences, or did I mess up my benchmark?
>I would guess that a 486/25 is roughly 4 times as fast as my 386/20.
>Do people find this reasonable?

I don't think the ray tracer (which I don't have) looks like a typical
application, unless you happen to have a very slow machine. But maybe
it's floating point?

My experience with benchmarking systems is that a SparcStation (and other
risc machines like the DecStation 3100 and the HP 9000/825...) does
extremely well in small tests, but not in larger tests.

Aside from typical benchmark programs my real test is to run a 230 page
document through Latex. This takes a little under 3 minutes on a
SparcStation and a Vax 8550 (around 7 mips) and a little over 3 minutes
on an Everex Step 386/25 with a '387. This 386 box performs about 2x
what a 386/16 does, and the 386/20 is somewhere in between, so I would
guess that a SparcStation is less than 2 times faster than the 386/20
and a 486/25 should be about twice as fast as a SparcStation.

Now, if you want to run X-windows for instance, and you only have VGA
(in whatever form), then the Sparc may do a lot better because VGA
is real slow.

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