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Futuremark 3DMark06 build 1.0.2

The latest version of 3DMark makes full use of the capabilities of today’s graphics cards, so it shows quite clearly that the Radeon X1650 XT and the GeForce 7900 GS belong to different product classes. However, the Radeon scores 131 points more than the GeForce 7600 GT.

The Radeon X1650 XT is a mere 59 points ahead of the GeForce 7600 GT in the SM2.0 tests. That’s right as these tests are limited to the Shader Model 2.0 framework. The smaller number of texture-mapping units in the AMD card is not a limiting factor here.

In the tests that make use of Shader Model 3.0 and FP HDR the difference is 130 points, or 10%, in favor of the Radeon X1650 XT. This is not a twofold advantage, yet it’s clear that ATI’s 3-to-1 concept is more relevant today than the 1 pixel processor per 1 TMU concept implemented in the GeForce 7 series.

The results of the first test aren’t good for the Radeon X1650 XT in the FSAA-less mode. That’s the only situation when the GeForce 7600 GT enjoys a big advantage due to its 12 TMUs. In the 4x FSAA + 16x Aniso mode this advantage is negated by the memory subsystem bandwidth and the number of ROPs (to remind you, the two cards have the same number of ROPs).

In the second test the “pure speed” of filling the scene is not a decisive parameter. Like in the similar test from 3DMark05, the Radeon X1650 XT wins here, but by a small margin, especially when there’s no FSAA.

The Radeon X1650 XT gains the upper hand again in the first of the SM3.0/HDR tests, although the gap is a mere 0.5fps.

Strangely enough, it is the GeForce 7600 GT that wins in the second SM3.0/HDR test, although the Radeon X1650 XT supports the Fetch4 feature that accelerates the rendering of shadows with Cascaded Shadow Maps. Judging by the separate tests, the overall scores of the two graphics cards – the Radeon X1650 XT has just a little higher score than the GeForce 7600 GT – are correct.

 
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