The scene recorded on the Metallurgy level is less complex; it contains some fighting indoors or in small open spaces. The CPU’s influence weakens here and the mainstream cards perform differently in the “pure speed” mode already, starting from 1280x1024 resolution. The GeForce 6600 GT AGP lost the low resolution to the RADEON 9800 XT – its architectural advantages are not called for here, while the ATI card has a twice wider memory bus. The difference is about 12-18 percent, but in 1600x1200 the GeForce 6600 GT AGP suddenly scores even or better, but only by 2 fps. As for the mainstream PCI Express cards, the GeForce 6600 GT is somewhat slower than the RADEON X700 XT in the first two resolutions, but has an insignificant advantage in 1600x1200.
With FSAA and anisotropic filtering enabled, the top-end cards from ATI have overall better speeds than the top models from NVIDIA, and this is already clear in 1280x1024. ATI is also superior among the 8-pipelined solutions, especially in the local fight “RADEON X700 XT against GeForce 6600 GT”. The bigger the resolution, the bigger the advantage of the former card is.
The SLI technology doesn’t yet work correctly with Unreal Tournament 2004: the game often freezes during benchmarking and when you try to exit it. Moreover, the SLI doesn’t bring any speed bonus in UT 2004, as this shooter heavily depends on the speed of the central processor.