Far Cry benchmark numbers are generated by repeated playings of the Research map, which consists of an good mix of beach, jungle, and interior settings found throughout the game’s various levels. Fraps is used to record performance as the same path is taken through the map during each test and all in-game options were configured for their highest settings (water at ultra high).
The X700 XT hung tough again, keeping the frame rate at a playable number throughout testing. While the X800 XT scores considerably higher its greater fill-rate and bandwidth doesn’t allow it to outperform the slower card as much as one might expect.
Call of Duty is the second title SimHQ uses testing OpenGL rather than the D3D API. Scores were derived from the Dawnville demo using the in-game timedemo utility to capture performance. The “com_maxfps” console command was also used to lift the default frame rate cap of 85.
Games built upon the aging Quake 3 engine aren’t much of a challenge to new hardware these days, even for mainstream budget cards, and the X700 pulls triple digit frame rates even at 1600×1200. It obviously begins hitting its fill-rate limits at the higher resolution as the frame rate drops considerably lower than the X800’s score.
NASCAR Racing 2003 Season was tested using SimHQ’s in-house replay, which consists of a crowded Daytona track with the camera view set to Earnhardt’s cockpit. All graphics options were placed at their highest settings.
This particular title proves once again that its performance is entirely dependent upon the speed of the CPU it’s running on. SimHQ is looking to retire NR2003 from its benchmark suite in the near future and replace it with SimBin’s GTR.
Valve’s Video Stress Test is a utility now included with the new Source engine-based version of Counter-Strike. The Video Stress test itself is a fly-by of a relatively small custom level and is designed to show off numerous graphical effects rendered through the heavy use of various shaders.
While the X800 loses roughly a third of its frame rate as the resolutions were increased, the X700 drops by more than half. One has to wonder if the 128 MB of on-board RAM was inadequate for the frame buffer size and textures the test requires. Regardless, the card still managed a solid frame rate of 57 at 1600×1200.