SIGGRAPH 2013 #1: SPEC’s new workstation benchmarks

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The SPECviewperf 3D graphics benchmark is set for its biggest overhaul in 18 years. Image: SPECviewperf 11 CATIA dataset.

SPEC’s Graphics and Workstation Performance Group (SPEC/GWPG) used Siggraph 2013 to unveil a number of new benchmarks, including a comprehensive test for professional workstations, a new version of 3D graphics test SPECviewperf, and application benchmarks for Autodesk 3ds Max and Maya.

Already in early beta stages, SPECwpc is described as a comprehensive, system-level benchmark based on professional workstation applications.

The benchmark doesn’t require application licenses, and covers a wide range of vertical markets, including energy, finance, general operations, life sciences, media and entertainment, and product development.
It will be interesting to see how applicable this is to CAD/CAM/CAE workflows and whether or not you can break down the test into constituent parts so you can only run tests that are applicable to your workflow.

SPECviewperf 12 is scheduled for release this Autumn. It is said to be the first all-new version of the established 3D benchmark in 18 years. It will support OpenGL and Direct X and will be capable of running dynamically generated datasets such as those used in medical, CAE, and oil and gas applications.

Before the end of the year the SPECapc group is also expected to release new performance evaluation software for systems running Autodesk 3ds Max and Maya in the media and entertainment space, and Siemens NX, PTC Creo and CATIA in the CAD/CAM space.

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At DEVELOP3D we currently use two application-specific benchmarks from SPEC to test workstations and graphics cards – SPECapc for SolidWorks 2013 and SPECapc for PTC Creo 2.0. Our results go through the SPECapc peer-review process and are posted on SPEC.org.