Windows 7 Experience Index

Posted by Minnaar Pieters 21 Jan 2009

While using the Windows Experience Index score as a benchmarking tool has never been quite as powerful as using something such as PCMark, it is handy nonetheless. I appreciate the "bottleneck" aspect of it in that it tends to give a official rating in the form of lowest subsystem score. For example, if all your hardware components score 5.0 but your 3D card is only 3.5, your final score will be 3.5. This give people who like to upgrade their hardware a good idea where to focus on when they get their next upgrade.

Yesterday I installed the Windows 7 Beta on my unibody Mac and so far I am very impressed. Its fast, stable, and a definate step in the right direction. (Not to crazy about the new taskbar though, it has the same problems as Mac OSX's dock). I fired up the system rating tool to see if there are any changes from Vista.

First thing I noticed is that the ratings have been upgraded to a maximum of 7.9 (up from 5.9 in Vista). Now I do not know why they have such obscure numbers - why not make it a 10? But anyway, here is the ratings my base model late 2008 Macbook got when in Vista:

Processor: 5.0
Memory: 5.7
Graphics: 5.6
Gaming Graphics: 5.4
Primary Hard Drive: 5.9
(Base Score: 5.0)

And here is the scores in Windows 7:
Processor: 5.4
Memory: 5.5
Graphics: 5.2
Gaming Graphics: 4.4
Primary Hard Drive: 5.9
(Base Score: 4.4)

For some reason my processor rating went up (Intel Core 2 Duo P7350 2.0GHz (which is a low voltage part btw)), and my gaming graphics score went down(Nvidia 9400m)? In a way this carries more truth than the Vista score, seeing as the macbook doesnt really focus all too much on having gaming ability graphics.

I would like to see how high end desktop machines do on these tests, seeing as the 5.9 "barrier" was hit pretty quickly when Vista came out. Having a "5.9" level computer (even a laptop) is not really all that impressive anymore, hopefully the new 7.9 rating will be a real ultra performance PC...

Any feedback on what your Windows 7 score is?
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I am a R&D Analyst in Stellenbosch South Africa who has a immense passion for all things tech related. I embrace technology, open source and web standards, and I participate and contribute to the social web.