ATI RADEON X700 XT vs. NVIDIA GeForce 6600 GT: Real Fight is Still Ahead
So, the RADEON X700 XT delivers a good performance overall. Despite its 128-bit memory bus, it is faster than the RADEON 9800 XT in most of the tests. The texturing problems, most likely caused by the too cruel reduction of the texture caches, hindered the X700 XT in its competition with the GeForce 6600 GT, which won a number of tests.
Take a look at the summarizing diagrams:
The RADEON X700 XT has roughly the same speed as the GeForce 6600 GT, but fails completely in several games like Doom 3, Halo and Far Cry. It is all clear with Doom 3, but the failure in the other two games is strange as they have always been ATI’s territory due to the use of numerous complex pixel shaders. And it is exactly in these two games that the RADEON X700 XT is much slower not only than the GeForce 6600 GT, but also than the RADEON 9800 XT with its older architecture. Clearly we deal with certain defects in the chip and/or the driver.
Thanks to the HyperZ HD technology, the RADEON X700 XT is either faster than the GeForce 6600 GT in the eye candy mode (when full-screen antialiasing and anisotropic filtering are enabled) or equals it.
Thus, the last word is not spoken yet in the battle for the mainstream. NVIDIA takes a pause, threatening to release a GeForce 6600 Ultra with 600/1200MHz frequencies, while ATI Technologies is yet to release the final version of the RADEON X700 XT accompanied with a sturdier driver into the market.