BAPCo SYSmark 2018

The Intel NUC9i9QNX (Ghost Canyon) was evaluated using our Fall 2018 test suite for small-form factor PCs. In the first section, we will be looking at SYSmark 2018.

BAPCo's SYSmark 2018 is an application-based benchmark that uses real-world applications to replay usage patterns of business users in the areas of productivity, creativity, and responsiveness. The 'Productivity Scenario' covers office-centric activities including word processing, spreadsheet usage, financial analysis, software development, application installation, file compression, and e-mail management. The 'Creativity Scenario' represents media-centric activities such as digital photo processing, AI and ML for face recognition in photos and videos for the purpose of content creation, etc. The 'Responsiveness Scenario' evaluates the ability of the system to react in a quick manner to user inputs in areas such as application and file launches, web browsing, and multi-tasking.

Scores are meant to be compared against a reference desktop (the SYSmark 2018 calibration system, a Dell Optiplex 5050 tower with a Core i3-7100 and 4GB of DDR4-2133 memory to go with a 128GB M.2 SATA III SSD). The calibration system scores 1000 in each of the scenarios. A score of, say, 2000, would imply that the system under test is twice as fast as the reference system.

SYSmark 2018 - Productivity

SYSmark 2018 - Creativity

SYSmark 2018 - Responsiveness

SYSmark 2018 - Overall

Systems equipped with 65W+ TDP desktop processors get higher scores in most workloads, though only the DeskMini Z370 manages an higher overall rating compared to the NUC9i9QNX. The surprising result is the responsiveness score for the two Ghost Canyon configurations - having the Optane drive talk directly to the CPU without the DMI bottleneck makes the system significantly more responsive.

SYSmark 2018 also adds energy measurement to the mix. A high score in the SYSmark benchmarks might be nice to have, but, potential customers also need to determine the balance between power consumption and the efficiency of the system. For example, in the average office scenario, it might not be worth purchasing a noisy and power-hungry PC just because it ends up with a 2000 score in the SYSmark 2014 SE benchmarks. In order to provide a balanced perspective, SYSmark 2018 also allows vendors and decision makers to track the energy consumption during each workload. In the graphs below, we find the total energy consumed by the PC under test for a single iteration of each SYSmark 2018 workload. For reference, the calibration system consumes 5.36 Wh for productivity, 7.71 Wh for creativity, 5.61 Wh for responsiveness, and 18.68 Wh overall.

SYSmark 2018 - Productivity Energy Consumption

SYSmark 2018 - Creativity Energy Consumption

SYSmark 2018 - Responsiveness Energy Consumption

SYSmark 2018 - Overall Energy Consumption

The NUC9i9QNX is hobbled slightly by the power-hungry Optane drive and high-TDP discrete GPU, making it approach the other desktop CPU-based systems in the list when the overall energy consumption is considered. Compared to a x16 configuration, operating the GPU at x8 results in lowered energy consumption for the SYSmark 2018 workloads.

Setup Notes and Platform Analysis UL Benchmarks - PCMark, 3DMark, and VRMark


View All Comments

  • ganeshts - Friday, April 17, 2020 - link

    Let me indulge you. Where are the positives exaggerated? In the concluding remarks section, number of pros = number of cons. The last paragraph even mentions the pricing aspect that is not touched upon in the pros and cons. Where are the negatives that I have not dwelt upon? Reply
  • Deicidium369 - Friday, April 17, 2020 - link

    You did fine Ganesh -

    The kiddies won't be happy unless you totally crap on Intel and exalt the wonderfulness that is AMD.
    I am a huge NUC fan - the 4.5"x4.5" NUCs - the reviewed unit is NUC in name only - and I have no clue what the use case is.
  • Korguz - Friday, April 17, 2020 - link

    and a huge intel fan, obviously, in your posts on tom's show this. thats why you exalt the wonderfulness that is intel Reply
  • Deicidium369 - Sunday, April 19, 2020 - link

    Admins - can you have a talk with Jimmy, he is becoming unhinged, and is stalking me. Reply
  • Korguz - Sunday, April 19, 2020 - link

    its just funny, you get called out on your BS there, so you come here, and try to spread your bs here as well. Reply
  • GreenReaper - Sunday, May 10, 2020 - link

    Come now. His name is clearly Korguz, not Jimmy. Reply
  • Reflex - Thursday, April 16, 2020 - link

    I have one of these:

    Full mITX in only 7.2L. It's fantastic, and I was able to build a Ryzen with full length GTX1080 no problem last year.
  • 1_rick - Thursday, April 16, 2020 - link

    The Dan A4 is $220. What a ripoff, when I can buy a Rosewill case AND get a PSU for $50!

    (Not really, but that's the same thing a lot of people are saying.)
  • jtd871 - Friday, April 17, 2020 - link

    That's what they will say until they own one.

    I was a KS backer of the DAN A4 v1 (silver). The KS price ended up very close to USD$280 after conversion from EUR, which did give me some pause at the time, but I really wanted it (and IIRC the initial KS run met goal in like 10 minutes after it opened). Still totally worth it IMO.

    I dare Rosewill to ever produce anything this classy.

    The DAN A4 KS cases shipped about this time *4 years ago*. So Intel really dropped the ball with their thermal design on this one, as far as I am concerned as the "sandwich" design has been in the wild for a long time. Keep up the mediocrity, Intel.
  • Reflex - Friday, April 17, 2020 - link

    Going to second this. The Dan case is incredibly high quality, can accomodate water cooling (not my thing), is well thought out internally with lots of places to stash SSD's and so on, has great airflow/heat characteristics and can be built to be nearly silent even with a powerful CPU/GPU combo.

    I'm incredibly happy with mine. And unless a person upgrades thier case routinely, the price isn't a big deal

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now