Conclusion

September 24, 2012 by NotebookReview Staff Reads (25,638)
Editor's Rating

Ratings Breakdown (1-10)

    • Software & Support
    • 7
    • Upgrade Capabilities
    • 6
    • Usability
    • 10
    • Design
    • 9
    • Performance
    • 7
    • Features
    • 8
    • Total Score:
    • 7.83
    • Rating 1 to 10, top score 10

From a performance standpoint, the (as configured) Z220 SFF offered some pretty impressive numbers. I used PassMark 7.0 (64 Bit) to put the Z220 through its paces, I also benchmarked two previous generation HP workstations, a XW6600 and a Z600, both equipped with Xeon Processors and NVIDIA graphics cards. The Z220 SFF was able to best both of those early workstation iterations, despite only having a single 3.4Ghz Xeon Processor. The Z220 SFF garnered an overall Passmark rating of 2440.5.

HP Z220 Workstation

For comparison against other systems reviewed here in the past, I also ran benchmarks using PCMark 7 and the system mustered an overall score of 4427 PCMarks. (Ed. note – PCM is often heavily influenced by drive speed, especially with SSDs). Heat and power consumption were two other areas that I explored while testing the Z220 SFF. Using a digital laser thermometer, I measured the air temperature exiting the power supply while running a burn-in application from PassMark Software. The Burn-In application taxes the CPU and Video subsystems on the WorkStation, generating as much heat and power draw as possible. After 20 minutes of running the Burn-In test, air exit temperatures measured 168 degrees. I measured power consumption using a Kill-a-Watt Pro plug-in meter; the Z220 SFF peaked at 175 watts during bootup. The system consumed 215 watts during full load testing.

Conclusion

On the plus side, the Z220 SFF offers excellent performance, especially for a machine that will fit on most any desk. Other pros include a plethora of build options, including a variety of processors and storage subsystems. HP allows you to build what amounts to a custom system, without the normal hassles of sourcing parts. On the con side, the Z220 SFF has limited expansion options, a result of the unit’s small desktop form factor, which means that the Z220 SFF may not be a good choice for high end CAD/CAM, which requires add on cards for connectivity to proprietary devices.

All things considered, the Z220 SFF proves to be a good workstation for those looking for entry level workstation performance, without the high cost of a traditional workstation. What’s more, the unit’s low entry price means that it may be a suitable replacement for traditional desktops, espeiaclly where higher performance levels are needed. 


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