|ACube recently released 3 different speed-ups of OS4 on Sam440s. While there have been a lot of low-level benchmarks, I wanted to know how they affected real-world usage. So before I did the upgrades (at least one of which cannot be reversed) I ran some benchmarks. Then I repeated them each time I did one of the speed-ups. Result? One speed-up made a huge difference, while the other two were barely measurable (probably because of the type of programs being used for the test).
Hardware used for test: Sam440 MiniITX 667MHz, 512MB RAM, built-in 64MB graphics chip.
Software used for test: AmigaOS4.1 Update 2, DvPlayer v0.65 (registered), ioQuake 3.
ACube speed-ups used: (b) sam440ep_setup.lha, (c) pci-mini-update.lha, (d) Sam440ep-mini_updater_20101206.zip . BEWARE that Sam440 Flex users must NOT use the "mini" versions, as they may kill your Sam440.
1. Soft reset, run ioQuake 3, go to console, timedemo 1, demo four. Recorded average FPS. Did this 2-3 times. (I've previously posted my "optimal" ioQuake 3 settings, so won't do so again.)
2. Soft reset, open Shell, CD to DvPlayer folder, DvPlayer VERBOSE sii3114ide.device:3 FULL. Recorded the % frames skipped for chapters 3-6 of the DVD "The girl who leapt through time" (which happened to have a nice range of short videos that I could easily run).
(a) 18.6, 18.7, 18.8 fps. [i.e. before any speed-ups]
(b) 18.6, 18.7 fps [i.e. after sam440ep_setup.lha]
(c) 19.1, 19.1 fps [i.e. after pci-mini-update.lha]
(d) 19.1, 19.2 fps [i.e. after Sam440ep-mini_updater_20101206.zip]
(a) 11, 25, 22, 16 %
(b) 11, 25, 22, 17 %
(c) 6, 20, 17, 12 %
(d) 6, 19, 17, 12 %
As you can see, the only speed-up which made any real difference in these tests was pci-mini-update.lha, and that improved DvPlayer quite a bit, while giving a small boost to ioQuake3. So I definitely recommend that update!
P.S. While I don't use DvPlayer until it has subtitle support (promised for the next release IIRC), I personally don't usually notice any frame skipping anyway. But any speed-up will surely help with the more difficult scenes (typically action-packed or fast-moving ones). And of course those with Sam440s faster than 667MHz should see less skipped frames in the first place.