February 16, 2007

Zune CPU usage

Gizmodo recently posted an entry noting that Zune seemed to be "using abnormally high amounts of CPU on Vista" compared to iTunes.

The entry reads:

Is it just our machine, or does the Zune software use a hell of a lot more CPU on Windows Vista than iTunes? They were pretty equal back on Windows XP SP2. Readers?

I have no idea what they were doing when they saw this (music playback? video playback? sync? finding the 19381837184627364th digit of Pi?), but, hey, I can try.

On my home Vista machine (Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4 GHz), here's the report from Process Explorer on CPU usage for Zune 1.2 vs iTunes 7.0.2 while playing a 128kbit stereo AAC file (Idiot Wind off Bob Dylan's Blood on the Tracks album). Obviously, CPU usage varies during playback, but I set the refresh rate on Process Explorer to 10 seconds to try to smooth out the bumps, and didn't grab the screen shot until the song had been playing for a while (so the startup effects aren't measured).

Sitting in the library view, no visualizer running:

With the visualizer (default options, roughly same window size, unclipped window):


Posted by Mike at February 16, 2007 05:09 PM

Attempting to show apple fanboys what valid numbers are will only result in failure if the result is not somehow pro apple.

For example, with the whole iPhone fiasco, apple fanboys cried out horror about cisco's valid trademark. However when Apple decided to attempt to trademark the word podcast (it was not even coined by them) the very same people lauded Apple for trying to protect its IP.

Posted by: Pramod on February 21, 2007 11:44 PM