IDG’s PC World Launches New Benchmark: PC Worldbench 2000

(SAN FRANCISCO, CA; MARCH 6, 2000) — Today, PC World (www.pcworld.com) announced the launch of PC WorldBench 2000, the third generation of the magazine’s industry-standard benchmark application used to measure the speed of desktop and notebook computers. Independently developed by the PC World Test Center—and specifically designed for today’s remarkably powerful PCs — PC WorldBench 2000 measures overall PC performance by running a suite of real business applications through a demanding series of 11 test scripts. Debuting with the May 2000 issue, all systems tested for the PC World Top 100, including 120 previously ranked PCs, have been put through the paces using the new test suite.

The most important upgrade is the capacity to run on Windows 2000-based PCs. The benchmark now supports Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 98SE, and Windows NT 4.0, as well as Microsoft’s newest operating system. PC World increased the number of separate tests from six to 11. In addition to existing applications (Microsoft Word 97, Corel WordPro 9, Microsoft Excel 97, Lotus 1-2-3 r9), PC World expanded the suite to include Microsoft Access 97, Microsoft PowerPoint 97, Netscape Communicator 4.06, Intuit Quicken Deluxe 99, Adobe Photoshop 5.0, Corel Photo-Paint 8, and Visio Standard 5.0.

"PC World’s philosophy requires that tests must be meaningful, fair, and replicable," said Tracey Capen, PC World’s executive editor, reviews and testing. "PC WorldBench 2000 accomplishes those goals and the results show users real-world differences between products. Benchmarking with real tasks and real applications is a better way to quantify computer performance than esoteric synthetic methods. When comparing one PC to another, the minutes or seconds saved working in Word, Photoshop, or any other application are values readers can apply to day-to-day work."

PC WorldBench 2000 installs, runs, times, and then completely removes each application automatically, one at a time. This process helps ensure that the same software configuration and version are run on every computer. As in previous generations, PC WorldBench 2000 combines the results of the 12 applications tests and compares them against a reference system: a Hewlett-Packard Pavilion 8380 desktop PC with a 400-MHz Pentium-II processor, 96MB of RAM, an 8GB hard drive, and an ATI RagePro Turbo AGP video adapter. To make the comparisons easy to interpret, PC World set the HP’s score at 100. Another system with a score of 150 is 50 percent faster than the HP; a system scoring 200 is 100 percent faster, and so on. The HP’s configuration was specifically selected to place it at the lower end of today’s performance scale.

For more information about PC WorldBench 2000, check out the May 2000 issue of PC World (on newsstands April 11), or visit PC World.com (www.pcworld.com).

PC World Communications, Inc. is the publisher of PC World (www.pcworld.com) and WebShopper (www.webshopper.com) and is a subsidiary of IDG, the world’s leading IT media, research and exposition company. The winner of the 1999 Grand Neal Award for editorial excellence, PC World is the world’s largest computer publication with a circulation rate base of 1.25 million. With more than 1.6 million unique visitors per month (Media Metrix, January 2000), pcworld.com is a leading online resource for PC-product buyers and users. IDG publishes more than 290 computer magazines and newspapers and 4,000 book titles and offers online users the largest network of technology-specific sites around the world through IDG.net (http://www.idg.net), which comprises more than 250 targeted Web sites in 55 countries. IDG is also a leading producer of 168 computer-related expositions worldwide, and provides IT market analysis through 49 offices in 42 countries worldwide. Company information is available at http://www.idg.com.

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