- does Opera deliver on speed promise with 10.5 pre alpha?
The launch of Opera 10.5 pre alpha prompted me to finally do some browser benchmarking myself. I've often been critical on the way other benchmarks were performed. It wouldn't always be clear which benchmarks were used and under which circumstances. Sometimes I simply wouldn't agree on the environments used, such as browsers running on virtual machines, which could have an unequal influence on some browsers. Besides, as an Opera user, I was keen to immediately find out if the promise of Opera's developers - to deliver speed - was fulfilled.
Author: Rachid Finge
Testing and Methods
The following browsers were tested during this benchmark, listed in alphabetical order:
- Apple Safari 4.0.4
- Google Chrome 126.96.36.199
- Microsoft Internet Explorer 8.0.7600.16385
- Mozilla Firefox 3.5.5
- Opera 10.2 alpha (build 1895)
- Opera 10.5 pre alpha (build 3172)
All tests were conducted on a PC with the following specifications:
- Intel Core i7 920 CPU (2.66 GHz) w/ Intel X58 chipset
- 6 GB of RAM running in triple channel mode
- ATI Radeon HD 4670 graphics card
- OCZ Vertex Turbo Solid State Drive 30 GB
- Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate x64
A browser test was conducted as follows. The browser being tested was start from the Windows 7 Superbar. All tabs were closed and data such as history, cookies and cache were cleared. Then, through Google Search, the Sunspider benchmark was loaded and executed. The total execution time was written down on a piece of paper. The benchmark was conducted twice more to get a total of three samples per benchmark per browser. The median value was used in the final results.
After Sunspider, Peacekeeper was loaded in the same tab and executed. The first browser being tested, Google Chrome, performed a system scan as requested by Peacekeeper. Other browsers didn't need to do the test, as a special url was given by Peacekeeper, transferring the system scan data and previous benchmarking results to other browsers for easy comparisons. As with Sunspider, the Peacekeeper benchmark was run three times, taking the median points score to the final results. The points scored on the Complex Graphics part of the benchmark are not taken into account into the final points calculation of Peacekeeper, as Internet Explorer does not support the required canvas HTML element. Scores of the Complex Graphics section were however also noted for seperate interpretation.
Following are graphs that show the results of the benchmarks per benchmark.
The final test, the Complex Graphics section of the Peacekeeper benchmark, again puts Opera 10.5 pre alpha in the lead by 35% over number two, which again is Google Chrome. Safari is beaten by Mozilla's Firefox only in this test. Internet Explorer did not produce a result as it doesn't support the canvas HTML element, which is required to pass this test.
It should be noted that the results on Windows cannot be directly translated to other operating systems. It is known that Apple's Safari runs quicker in Mac OS X Snow Leopard due to specific optimizations not available in Windows, while Opera has suggested that its optimizations in Opera 10.5 on Mac are "not as far along" as on Windows. Also, while the versions of Google Chrome and Apple Safari used in this test are already in production state, Opera 10.5 is not. The current build should not be used for day to day browsing, Opera has stated.