Dell XPS 8300 Media Desktop Review

13. Civilization V15. GPU Computing


Dell XPS 8300 Media Desktop Review

Real World System Performance – Media Playback

Blu-Ray 3D Playback: Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs 3D is encoded in High Definition 1080p format using MPEG4 AVC compression and comes on a dual layer (50GB) disc. The aspect ratio of 2.35:1 is used with letterbox bars at the top and bottom of the 16:9 image. This portion of the movie has an average video bitrate of around 45MBPS and regularly peaks above this making it one of the most demanding Blu-Rays on the market. For comparison, a movie such as Casino Royale has a bitrate of 24MBPS.


Results

Blu-Ray 3D playback is a relatively simple affair on recent NVIDIA hardware, just install the latest drivers then tweak the display settings to the preferred level and run PowerDVD 11 which also features support for Blu-Ray 3D. If we want to pass some of the video processing to our GPU (including on-board support) we can do so by going into the software options and ticking the hardware acceleration box.

With GPU acceleration in place the CPU usage statistic for Blu-Ray playback never rises above 10%, leaving plenty of resources free for other tasks. It would be hard to tell the two systems apart if they were side by side.

YouTube HD


Results

In our second playback test we look at 1080p video on YouTube and it is clear that viewing of these demanding clips will be no problem for the XPS 8300 which once again shows the same performance as a build we put together ourselves.

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