High pixel shader performance is important for the Pier demo in which there’s a lot of water rendered by means of such shaders. Performance of graphics cards faster than the Radeon X1800 XL is usually limited in this scene by the speed of the central processor, but the CPU doesn’t interfere in the competition between the PowerColor X1800 GTO and the GeForce 7600 GT: the ATI solution is in the lead beginning from 1024x768 resolution.
The advantage of the PowerColor X1800 GTO over its opponent is bigger when we turn on 4x FSAA – it amounts to 20% in 1600x1200. This is enough for the card to provide a comfortable average speed of 55fps and higher. The GeForce 7600 GT with its 128-bit memory and 8 ROPs cannot contend here.
The requirements to the graphics subsystem are different on the Research map: it’s important to have SM3.0 support to render the lighting of the scene in one pass. Nvidia’s cards have always been better at that due to the specifics of the game unless you turn full-screen antialiasing on. Here, the PowerColor X1800 GTO is 10-17% slower than the GeForce 7600 GT depending on the resolution, yet it anyway provides an average frame rate of at least 70fps.
ATI’s solution easily overtakes its opponent after we turn on 4x FSAA. Both the cards deliver a good performance because Far Cry isn’t a very demanding application, although it is as beautiful as the most recent first-person 3D shooters are and even better!
HDR support for Radeon X1000 is implemented poorly in the current version of Far Cry . This is why the PowerColor X1800 GTO cannot contend with the GeForce 7600 GT here.
This is especially clear on the Research map where high pixel shader performance is important while the advantages of the 256-bit memory bus aren’t called for. Anyway, the resolution of 1024x768 is available on the PowerColor X1800 GTO in both cases.