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Performance: Quake3 Arena

In Quake3 Arena I used the maximum graphics quality settings. For our tests I used a standard four.dm_66 demo:

And also my own demo, which I will mention a little later. So, first let’s consider the graphics cards performance in a standard demo:

NVIDIA GeForce FX 5900 outperforms ATI RADEON 9800 Pro not to mention ATI RADEON 9800. In fact I can’t tell you for sure what helped the leader to be so successful here: the graphics chip, the graphics card or ATI and NVIDIA software developers. There is only one thing we can say with all certainty: Quake3 Arena is definitely among the first on the list of applications, which receive optimizations in the gaming graphics cards drivers.

Judging by the results in 1024x768 where the graphics cards receive the minimal workload and the difference between the “fast” and the “slow” modification of the card is not that great, we can say that NVIDIA’s OpenGL part of the driver boasts better optimizations.

As the resolution grows, graphics cards on NVIDIA GeForce FX 5900/5900 Ultra get farther ahead of the rivals: Quake3 Arena is a very “convenient” application for them. First, most surfaces in the scenes feature two texturing layers (this is optimal for GeForce FX 5900/5900 Ultra, which features four pixel pipelines with two texturing units on each). Second, GeForce FX 5900/5900 Ultra work at higher core and memory clock frequencies and the results in the selected testing modes are primarily determined by the fillrate and memory bus bandwidth.

When we enable full-screen anti-aliasing, graphics cards on ATI chips start falling even farther behind their competitors. For example, in 1600x1200 NVIDIA GeForce FX 5900 is almost 1.5 times faster than ATI RADEON 9800.

 
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