Monday, June 13, 2016

The super benchmark: WinRAR 5.31 VS 7-Zip 16.02

Hello! I am back with another amazing article.. wait.. it is a comparison. A first on earth like the previous time. So, before I start showing you the details, let me give a self-link to my previous comparison between these two titans of the compression world:

winrar vs 7zip benchmark

WinRAR has had many improvements since its 5.20 version, mostly being graphical fixes and archive bits-and-pieces feature fixes.

Interestingly, 7-Zip 16.02 has had a major feature addition since the 9.34 alpha: multivolume ZIP and RAR5 extraction support. Other fixes are hardly noticeable to be honest. And this is a stable version (yay!).

My comprehensive benchmark results will be shown. But before that, few more things I want to tell you all.

One, the best archiver on the basis of feature set, supported by SqueezeChart 2014 and my own benchmark was concluded by me for major OSes in this article:

Two, WinRAR with 512 MB dictionary size usage requires only 3 GB RAM. But 7-Zip requires 11 GB RAM for 512 MB dictionary size, which is not common in PCs or laptops. So WinRAR is better for common PCs.

My benchmark is here, below this line.


System Specs

Windows 7 Home Premium (OS also makes some difference in terms of optimisation of system resources)
Core i3-2120 3.3 GHz
1 GB AMD Radeon HD 6450 gfx card
Seagate 1 TB HDD @ 7200 rpm

Software used

WinRAR 5.31
7-Zip 16.02
PeaZip 6.02 (for the only GZip result)


MVSC (contains Cadillacs n Dinosaurs, Marvel Superheroes VS Street Fighter,
Marvel VS Capcom, Street Fighter Alpha 2, X-Men VS Street Fighter ROMs
and Final Burn Alpha emulator) 119 MB

NFS MW -- NFS Most Wanted installed game folder 2.83 GB

Oni -- Bungie's Oni installed game folder 1.01 GB

DBZ BT3 -- Dragon Ball Z Budokai Tenkaichi 3 PS2 ISO ROM 2.81 GB

Format Dict size used

RAR5 128 MB
7Z 64 MB (Best)
7Z 32 MB (Max)
7Z 16 MB (Normal)
7Z 1 MB (Fast)

Throughout, for 7Z, LZMA2 algorithm was used.
In each case Solid compression was used.

Note: In RAR and RAR5, Best and good were almost equivalent in size and time and
hardly made difference in memory usage,
which was doubling time to benchmark so to avoid time wastage, “good” was excluded.

Note: no test was done twice, as others say to remove HDD bottleneck.
This is a real-world performance test, and as expected, no one would compress a file
twice to ensure removal of bottlenecks as it will take nearly double the time to do such a task practically.


Time is in seconds throughout.


Folder Format Mode CompressTime ArchiveSize ExtractTime

MVSC 7Z Ultra 34 110 MB 2
MVSC 7Z Max 23 110 MB 2
MVSC 7Z Normal 17 110 MB 2
MVSC 7Z Fast 13 111 MB 1.8
MVSC 7Z Fastest 7 112 MB 2

MVSC RAR Best 12 111 MB 1.7
MVSC RAR Normal 13 111 MB 1.5
MVSC RAR Fast 12 111 MB 1.3
MVSC RAR Fastest 4.8 112 MB 1.6

MVSC RAR5 Best 20 111 MB 1.4
MVSC RAR5 Normal 20 111 MB 1.4
MVSC RAR5 Fast 20 111 MB 1.5
MVSC RAR5 Fastest 4 111 MB 1.5

NFS MW 7Z Ultra 721 1.83 GB 161
NFS MW 7Z Max 534 1.84 GB 171
NFS MW 7Z Normal 473 1.85 GB 125
NFS MW 7Z Fast 278 1.96 GB 127
NFS MW 7Z Fastest 171 2.03 GB 133

NFS MW RAR Best 299 1.94 GB 71
NFS MW RAR Normal 317 1.94 GB 74
NFS MW RAR Fast 589 1.92 GB 76
NFS MW RAR Fastest 132 2.03 GB 78

NFS MW RAR5 Best 619 1.91 GB 70
NFS MW RAR5 Normal 626 1.91 GB 69
NFS MW RAR5 Fast 568 1.92 GB 71
NFS MW RAR5 Fastest 119 2.03 GB 67

NFS MW TAR+GZ Normal 70+239 2.08 GB 101+88 *GZip is superfast? Here is a result.

Oni 7Z Ultra 230 381 MB 26
Oni 7Z Max 197 425 MB 29
Oni 7Z Normal 165 439 MB 30
Oni 7Z Fast 72 503 MB 33
Oni 7Z Fastest 45 522 MB 35

Oni RAR Best 109 487 MB 19
Oni RAR Normal 86 482 MB 22
Oni RAR Fast 75 485 MB 21
Oni RAR Fastest 40 528 MB 23

Oni RAR5 Best 139 291 MB 16
Oni RAR5 Normal 136 291 MB 19
Oni RAR5 Fast 93 293 MB 17
Oni RAR5 Fastest 35 519 MB 17

DBZ BT3 7Z Ultra 529 1.22 GB 83
DBZ BT3 7Z Max 415 1.24 GB 82
DBZ BT3 7Z Normal 341 1.27 GB 83
DBZ BT3 7Z Fast 199 1.57 GB 85
DBZ BT3 7Z Fastest 140 1.70 GB 108

DBZ BT3 RAR Best 239 1.42 GB 56
DBZ BT3 RAR Normal 214 1.42 GB 60
DBZ BT3 RAR Fast 188 1.41 GB 59
DBZ BT3 RAR Fastest 104 1.65 GB 60

DBZ BT3 RAR5 Best 468 1.24 GB 37
DBZ BT3 RAR5 Normal 431 1.24 GB 39
DBZ BT3 RAR5 Fast 405 1.25 GB 38
DBZ BT3 RAR5 Fastest 104 1.63 GB 41



So, the best setting as I can observe is "RAR5 Fast (Solid)". It means the newer RAR5 format used with Fast compression setting and "Solid archiving" option checked.

For even quicker compression, I will simply go with "RAR5 Fastest (Non-Solid)".

Why have I written "Non-Solid"? Even though I used "Solid" setting, non-solid is faster than solid compression as headers for all seperate files are compressed together rather than individually treated so. But compressing these headers makes an archive much smaller at the expense of nearly 1 sec per 700 individual files. It also means the solid setting will not let you extract a file individually out of a solid archive. All files are processed and skipped except for those file(s).

WinRAR is better for daily life usage, even though 7-Zip has better compression (2-3%). But time is money, and 7-Zip wastes that to get smaller archives. WinRAR is efficient enough for daily life usage.

NOTE: FreeARC and NanoZip, the more efficient archivers than WinRAR are projects that have been abandoned.

There is a little chit-chat about FreeARC Next at, but no progress. Moreover, Bulat Ziganshin has posted some code at GitHub, but is unwilling to release some parts as open source. There has been no update since March 2015.

As for NanoZip, there are no updates since April 30, 2014 (website updation only) and there is absolutely no source code available even though it is still in experimental stage. Suffice to say, it looks abandoned to me in 2016.

Let's see what my readers want to say. :)