Our testing methods
All tests were run three times, and their results were averaged, using the following test system.
|Processor||Athlon 64 FX-53 2.4GHz|
|System bus||HT 16-bit/1GHz downstream|
|Motherboard||DFI LANParty NF4 Ultra-D||Abit AV8|
|BIOS revision||NF4LD209||VIA K8T800 Pro|
|North bridge||NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra||VIA K8T800 Pro|
|South bridge||VIA VT8237|
|Chipset drivers||ForceWare 6.53||Hyperion 4.56|
|Memory size||1GB (2 DIMMs)||1GB (2 DIMMs)|
|Memory type||OCZ PC3200 EL Platinum Rev 2 DDR SDRAM at 400MHz|
|CAS latency (CL)||2||2|
|RAS to CAS delay (tRCD)||2||2|
|RAS precharge (tRP)||2||2|
|Cycle time (tRAS)||5||5|
|Hard drives||Seagate Barracuda 7200.7 NCQ 120GB SATA|
|Audio drivers||Realtek 3.71||Realtek 3.71|
|Graphics 1||ATI Radeon X800 XL 256MB with CATALYST 5.4 drivers||ATI Radeon X800 XL 256MB with CATALYST 5.4 drivers|
|Graphics 2||ATI Radeon X800 XL 512MB with CATALYST 5.4 drivers||ATI All-in-Wonder X800 XT 256MB with CATALYST 5.4 drivers|
|Graphics 3||NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT 256MB with ForceWare 7.89 drivers||ATI Radeon X850 XT PE 256MB with CATALYST 5.4 drivers|
|Graphics 4||NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT 256MB with ForceWare 7.89 drivers|
|Graphics 5||NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT 256MB with ForceWare 7.89 drivers|
|OS||Microsoft Windows XP Professional|
|OS updates||Service Pack 2, DirectX 9.0c|
Today we're looking at the performance of ATI's Radeon X800 XL, X850 XT Platinum Edition, and All-in-Wonder X800 XT graphics cards against that of several competitors. On the AGP front, the cards will go toe-to-toe with NVIDIA's GeForce 6800 GT and Ultra. We've also included a handful of PCI Express cards, including a GeForce 6800 GT, and 256 and 512MB flavors of the Radeon X800 XL. If ATI's bridge chip is doing its job properly, there should be little difference between the performance of AGP and PCI Express versions of the Radeon X800 XL.
Thanks to OCZ for providing us with memory for our testing. If you're looking to tweak out your system to the max and maybe overclock it a little, OCZ's RAM is definitely worth considering.
We used the following versions of our test applications:
- DOOM 3 1.1 with trdelta1 and trhaze demos
- Far Cry 1.3 with tr1-volcano and tr3-pier demos
- Half-Life 2 with trboat and trtown demos
- Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory 1.02
- FutureMark 3DMark05 Build 120
The test systems' Windows desktop was set at 1280x1024 in 32-bit color at an 85Hz screen refresh rate. Vertical refresh sync (vsync) was disabled for all tests. All of the 3D gaming tests used the highest possible detail image quality settings except where otherwise noted.
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.