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SPEC/GPC Retires CDRS Viewset

February 12, 1999 -- SPEC/GPC’s OpenGL Performance Characterization (OPC) project group has retired its CDRS viewset four months ahead of schedule. No new CDRS performance results will be reported on this Web site and the viewset will no longer be available for free downloading.

The OPC group cites a variety of reasons for retiring CDRS early, including the following:

  • a small model size that no longer represents the application.
  • the rapid acceptance of the new ProCDRS viewset.
  • industry perception that the CDRS viewset is too simple and easily optimized.
  • technical concerns about optimizations being performed on the viewset.
  • the recommendation by the SPEC Board of Directors to strongly consider retirement based on the reasons listed above.

Viewsets are datasets that represent the same mix of graphics rendering and functionality found in actual applications. They run under Viewperf, SPEC/GPC’s industry-standard benchmark that measures the 3D rendering performance of systems operating under the OpenGL application programming interface (API).

The OPC project group announced last year that it would retire CDRS six months after the first reporting of results for its replacement, ProCDRS. It became apparent in recent months, however, that the aging viewset – it was introduced in 1994 – did not have the model size or functionality needed to fully exercise the new generation of graphics systems. In early December 1998, ProCDRS made a successful debut – initial results on this Web site include 29 system configurations from 11 vendors. The acceptance of ProCDRS has made CDRS obsolete. Based on industrial design software from Parametric Technology Corporation, ProCDRS uses a much-larger model than CDRS and exercises a higher level of graphics functionality.

"We encourage computer graphics system vendors, users, analysts and the trade press to report performance results based on the latest versions of viewsets running under Viewperf," says John Spitzer of Raycer Graphics, chair of the OPC project group.

In response to issues surrounding the CDRS viewset, the OPC project group is working to update its rules for submitting, running, reviewing and reporting results under Viewperf. These rules will be recommended to the GPC group for use among all project groups. New Viewperf results will not be published on this Web site until updated rules are in place. Estimated time for the next publication of new results is early April.

The retirement announcement is for the CDRS viewset only, not the Viewperf benchmark, a new version of which was introduced in December. Viewperf 6.1 allows the OPC group to work with independent software vendors (ISVs) to update and add to its current viewsets. It includes support for features such as multiple primitive types, multiple textures, texture objects, and explicit texture coordinates. A key feature of Viewperf 6.1 is the ability to capture a portion of the display screen as an image file, which can be used to compare image quality across multiple systems.

All viewsets have been updated to support the new Viewperf functionality and to output image files in PNG format. In addition to ProCDRS-01, current viewsets include AWadvs-02, based on Alias/Wavefront’s 3D animation software; DRV-05, based on Intergraph’s plant layout and visualization program; DX-04, based on IBM’s Data Explorer, a scientific visualization package; and Light-02, based on Discreet Logic’s architectural visualization and lighting effects software.