New benchmark brings testing standards to OpenCL

Rightware says Basemark CL will improve all applications using GPUs for general purpose computation.

Last year the Khronos Group introduced OpenCL (Open Computing Language) an open, royalty-free standard for parallel programming of modern processors, aimed specifically at using the new generation of Graphic Processing Units (GPUs) for general purpose computation. Now Rightware has introduced a new benchmark program to provide objective test data for OpenCL implementations.

A Julia Fractal animation, one of several generated by the Basemark CL benchmark. A short video is at the end of this article. (Source: Rightware)

Basemark CL is designed to provide a variety of performance measurement capabilities for device manufacturers, semiconductor companies and others to test and optimize OpenCL implementations. The current release features tests targeted for desktop computers. An embedded profile version of the benchmark will be published at a later stage.

Rightware, based in Espoo, Finland, envisions OpenCL becoming the foundation layer of a parallel computing ecosystem of platform-independent tools, middleware and applications, and has fashioned Basemark CL to match the vision. Basemark CL features workloads that stress the OpenCL implementation “in a realistic way, therefore yielding performance measurement data that is objective and relevant,” says Rightware. “With the help of OpenCL, it is possible to improve games, applications, and user interfaces by including physics-based animations and game-like elements.”

Rightware has grown to become a leader in creating 3D User Interface technology, serving mobile, automotive and other embedded industries with its Kanzi solution for rapid 3D user interface design and deployment. From its roots in Finland, it has grown to have offices in Shanghai, Beijing, and Palo Alto. Basemark CL joins an existing family of testing products for OpenGL ES, OpenVG, Android, Linux, Symbian, and Windows Mobile.

Why it matters

The ability to perform compute-intensive tasks in parallel, using virtually any processor present in the device, opens the door for significant performance and functionality improvements, something we have reported often in GraphicSpeak. Rightware CEO Tero Sarkkinen claims Basemark CL will provide “an outstanding test platform for applications, games and user interfaces utilizing OpenCL, as it will greatly improve the flow of getting things done, much faster and better.”