Our testing methods
As ever, we did our best to deliver clean benchmark numbers. Tests were run three times, and the results were averaged.
Our test system was configured like so:
|Processor||Athlon XP 'Thoroughbred' 2600+ 2.083GHz|
|Front-side bus||333MHz (166MHz DDR)|
|Motherboard||DFI LANParty NFII Ultra|
|Chipset||NVIDIA nForce2 Ultra 400|
|North bridge||nForce2 Ultra 400 SPP|
|South bridge||nForce2 MCP-T|
|Chipset drivers||NVIDIA 2.45|
|Memory size||512MB (2 DIMMs)|
|Memory type||Corsair XMS3200 PC2700 DDR SDRAM (333MHz)|
|Graphics card||GeForce FX 5600 Ultra 128MB||Radeon 9600 Pro 128MB|
Radeon 9600 XT 128MB
|Graphics driver||Detonator FX 45.23||CATALYST 3.8|
|Storage||Maxtor DiamondMax Plus D740X 7200RPM ATA/100 hard drive|
|OS||Microsoft Windows XP Professional|
|OS updates||Service Pack 1, DirectX 9.0b|
We're comparing the Radeon 9600 XT to its most direct competitors, the Radeon 9600 Pro, and NVIDIA's GeForce FX 5600 Ultra. I've elected to use only publicly available and supported drivers for this review, which means you won't find any results using the various beta versions of NVIDIA's "Release 50" drivers. We'll be exploring the performance and image quality of NVIDIA's next official driver release when the driver is finalized, WHQL-certified, and available to the general public.
The test system's Windows desktop was set at 1024x768 in 32-bit color at a 75Hz screen refresh rate. Vertical refresh sync (vsync) was disabled for all tests.
We used the following versions of our test applications:
All the tests and methods we employed are publicly available and reproducible. If you have questions about our methods, hit our forums to talk with us about them.
|Friday night topic: Light bulbs? Yep, light bulbs||198|
|International Women's Day Shortbread||38|
|Newest Thermaltake Urban case has dual doors||20|
|Deal of the week: Discounted Windows and cheap storage||11|
|MSI gaming barebones has Mini-ITX mobo, external overclocking button||32|
|Fan-made Morrowind remake looks amazing||34|
|Thursday Night Shortbread||41|
|Razer unveils homebrewed mechanical keyboard switches||54|