Articles: Graphics
 

Bookmark and Share

(22) 
Pages: [ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 ]

OVERDRIVE 3: Feature-Rich, but Lacking Reliability

At one time with the announcement of the new graphics processors ATI unveiled the new version of its dynamic overclocking technology called OVERDRIVE 3, which can now vary the frequency of the memory as well as of the GPU. Besides that, the user can now manually adjust the frequencies, and there’s also an auto-overclock feature similar to the one implemented in NVIDIA’s ForceWare.

Unfortunately, not all cards in ATI’s GPUs support OVERDRIVE. At least, this technology didn’t work with our sample of the RADEON X800 XL and Catalyst 5.2 – the appropriate tab was simply missing in the Catalyst Control Center. We are not sure about the reason –some necessary logics was perhaps missing on the card, or its BIOS didn’t support OVERDRIVE, or maybe the support of OVERDRIVE for the RADEON X800 XL is disabled in the current version of the Catalyst driver.

The auto-overclock feature worked with the RADEON X850 XT Platinum Edition, but selected so high clock rated that the card would show artifacts even in 2D modes. When this feature was turned on with the PowerColor X850 XT, the monitor would shut down and the system would hang up. Alas, ATI’s auto-overclock feature is yet far from perfect and is subject to blame.

Testbed and Methods

We performed our tests on a testbed configured like follows:

  • AMD Athlon 64 4000+ CPU (2.40GHz, 1MB L2 cache);
  • ASUS A8N-SLI Deluxe mainboard;
  • 2 x 512MB OCZ PC-3200 Platinum EB DDR SDRAM (CL2.5-3-2-8);
  • Samsung SpinPoint SP1213C hard disk drive (Serial ATA-150, 8MB buffer);
  • Creative SoundBlaster Audigy 2 sound card.

Since a GeForce 6800 for PCI Express was not available, we tested it on another testbed, which is marked with an asterisk (*) in the diagrams:

  • AMD Athlon 64 4000+ CPU (2.40GHz, 1MB L2 cache);
  • ABIT KV8 Pro mainboard;
  • 2x 512MB OCZ PC-3200 Platinum EB DDR SDRAM (CL2.5-3-2-8);
  • Samsung SpinPoint SP1213C hard disk drive (Serial ATA-150, ????? 8MB);
  • Creative SoundBlaster Audigy 2 sound card.

Software:

  • Microsoft Windows XP Pro SP2, DirectX 9.0c;
  • ATI Catalyst 5.2;
  • NVIDIA ForceWare 66.93.

For the comparison’s sake we included the following cards into this review:

PCI Express hardware

AGP hardware

  • NVIDIA GeForce 6800 128MB (325/700MHz).

The Catalyst A.I. option was set to “Standard”, and the Mipmap Detail Level option to “Quality”. We also enabled the ForceWare optimizations save for the Anisotropic mip filter optimization. The image settings were set to the Quality mode. We disabled VSync in the drivers for all the participating cards.

We turned on full-screen antialiasing and anisotropic filtering from the game’s own menu. Otherwise we forced the necessary mode from the driver. The maximum graphics quality settings were selected in each game, the same for graphics cards on ATI’s and NVIDIA’s GPUs. We used the GeForce 6600 GT SLI configuration in the Multi-GPU Rendering mode which enables the multi-GPU mode in games for which this mode is not officially supported by ForceWare.

We reshuffled our games and benchmarks for this test session, throwing away old titles and adding new ones:

First Person 3D Shooters:

  • Doom III;
  • Unreal Tournament 2004;
  • The Chronicles of Riddick;
  • Far Cry;
  • Painkiller: Battle Out of Hell;
  • Half-Life 2;

Third Person 3D Shooters:

  • Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow;
  • Prince of Persia: Warrior Within;

Simulators:

  • IL-2 Sturmovik: Aces in the Sky;
  • Lock On: Modern Air Combat;
  • Colin McRae Rally 05;

Strategies:

  • Warhammer 40.000: Dawn of War;
  • Perimeter;

Semi-Synthetic Benchmarks:

  • Aquamark3;
  • Final Fantasy;

Synthetic Benchmarks:

  • Futuremark 3DMark03 build 360;
  • Futuremark 3DMark05 build 120.
 
Pages: [ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 ]

Discussion

Comments currently: 22
Discussion started: 03/22/05 03:21:18 PM
Latest comment: 08/25/06 12:40:44 PM

View comments

Add your Comment