Thanks to Robert Campbell, one of the volunteer technicians at The Working Centre’s Computer Recycling Project, I am very pleased to report some further DVD ripping and encoding results on an AMD-based 8 core system. In the Linux Labs section of Full Circle Magazine Issue #61 I reported the DVD ripping and encoding results for 4 systems: a single core AMD system, a dual core Intel system, and on almost identically configured quad core AMD and Intel systems. The winner of this show down was the AMD Quad core which ripped and encoded in a time of 37 minutes and 14 seconds.
For this test I used the same DVD and the exact same settings I used for the 4 systems I tested for Full Circle Magazine (see Issue #61). My favourite Linux DVD ripping software, Acidrip, is a front end to mencoder which does the DVD rips and encodes the DVD data. To time the experiments both for Full Circle Magazine and Robert’s system I used stopwatch, a nifty Tcl/Tk stopwatch program.
Thanks to Robert we have a new winner, his 8 core system, which took a total time of 25 minutes and 51 seconds. I believe ripping and encoding could have been at least a few minutes faster with some configuration and hardware (or software) changes. Unfortunately right now AMD/ATI does not use VDPAU (Nvidia is the driver for this API, but S3 also has support) which means we couldn’t offload the encoding processing on to his ATI Radeon HD 6970 video card. Robert also has a 64GB Solid State Drive but it was set up so that most of the drive was swap (29GB, which was unnecessary since Robert has 16GB of RAM).
Robert’s LG HL-DT-ST BD-RE GGW-H10N Blueray/HD DVD combo writer had respectable ripping speed of 6 minutes and 7 seconds, less than our amazing Benq DVD writers on the dual core systems which ripped the DVD in 4 minutes and 52 seconds, but still good.
Robert’s motherboard is an Asus Crosshair V Formula motherboard, his CPU a 8x AMD FX(tm)-8120 Eight-Core Processor, with 4 sticks of 4GB (16GB total) Kingston Hyper DDR3 RAM, a Crucial M4-CT064M4SSD2 solid state drive, and a 1.5TB Western Digital WDC WD15EARS-00M hard drive. I already mentioned Robert’s ATI Radeon HD 6970 video card but I’ll mention it again here for completeness.
My belief is that if we switched out the Blueray for the Benq DVD and the ATI video card for a VDPAU-supported Nvidia card we could probably get this time to around 15 minutes, or perhaps less if we ran entirely off the solid state hard drive. Thanks to Robert for bringing in his system, letting me run a few tests, and for allowing us to post pictures of his system and himself.
So is it worth spending extra money on a loaded 8 core system? Performance even without an optimal setup is still 11-12 minutes better than our fastest system, the AMD quad core. If you’re doing a dozen DVDs save your money. But if you have lots of cash burning a hold in your pocket and are ripping and encoding hundreds of DVDs it will save you significant time.