We don’t get any useful information in our standard “eye candy” mode on the Pier map: all the multi-GPU solutions have the same performance across all the resolutions, meeting the barrier set by the system’s CPU. You may note, however, that this barrier goes somewhat lower for the GeForce 7950 GX2 than for the others due to its design or driver.
There is a surprise as we switch to 8x FSAA: the GeForce 7950 GX2 refuses to be slower than the GeForce 7900 GTX SLI subsystem that boasts better technical characteristics. Meanwhile, the GeForce 7900 GT SLI configuration, with frequencies similar to those of the GeForce 7950 GX2, has much worse results due to its smaller amount of graphics memory or to the older ForceWare driver it uses.
It’s all normal again as we switch to 16x SLI AA: the GeForce 7950 GX2 is not competing with the GeForce 7900 GTX SLI, but is only a little better than the GeForce 7900 GT SLI. The new graphics card doesn’t behave strangely as it did in 8x SLI AA mode, although 16x SLI AA should depend more on the parameters of the graphics subsystem than any other antialiasing mode.
Note that you again can only play normally on Nvidia’s cards in 1024x768 although Far Cry isn’t anything terrible for a modern graphics card of a high enough class, especially for a SLI tandem build on two top-end devices.
The participating graphics cards differ more on the Research map; the GeForce 7950 GX2 is considerably faster than the Radeon X1900 XTX in 1600x1200.
The odd behavior of the GeForce 7950 GX2 we saw on the Pier map can be observed on the Research level, too. It’s even more conspicuous: the new card leaves the GeForce 7900 GTX SLI behind by over 10%! The GeForce 7900 GT SLI configuration is far behind again, confirming our suspicions of that the new ForceWare driver is quite an improvement over the older version.
The graphics cards are generally higher here than on the Pier map, so all the multi-GPU solutions included in this review make all the display resolutions playable.
Being limited by its slow memory, the GeForce 7950 GX2 cannot surprise us anymore in 16x SLI AA mode. It still manages to be within 8-10% from the GeForce 7900 GTX SLI. You can play this game on the new Nvidia card in 1280x1024 at such settings (but this is only true for Far Cry ’s closed scenes).
All the participating graphics cards are roughly similar in the lowest resolution, but the GeForce 7950 GX2 takes the lead in 1280x1024. Unfortunately, the GeForce 7 architecture doesn’t support FSAA and HDR simultaneously, so you have to choose between getting an anti-aliased picture and better color representation.
The same goes for the Research map where the GeForce 7950 GX2 has an average speed of 85fps and higher in HDR mode. It beats the Radeon X1900 XTX here.