And to celebrate, I've opened an account on Amazon Web Services and have started some render speed tests using Blender. The first of which is just a quick one (well after getting a windows server instance set up along with blender and ftp)
This first (CPU only) speed test is a simple *Aiko with clothes and Hair in Blender Cycles. The "lighting" is just a sky texture (preetham) in world settings, Render Sampling at just 100. I used mCasual's mcjTeleBlender3 script to get Aiko into Blender, saved as as .blend and ftp'd it to my aws windows instance (I'll talk more on setting up AWS another time)
Rendering test at 2000X2000 resolution, 100 quality setting in Blender -output shown below scaled down for web.
Core2Quad Q6600 @ 2.4Ghz with 8GB Ram (my own pc) - 6 minutes 33 seconds
AWS C4.8xlarge (Intel Xeon E5-2666 v3 -36 vCPU with 60Gb Ram) - 25 seconds
*Note that the server instance is not accessible to the public , files are only uploaded for rendering and deleted afterwards to comply with Daz T&C.