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Futuremark 3DMark06 build 1.0.2

Unlike 3DMark05, the overclocked XFX GeForce 7600 GT proved highly efficient in 3DMark06 and this solution gained additional 491 points and reached the performance level of Radeon X1800 XL. How did this happen? Let’s find out now.

In the SM2.0 tests the performance gain made 139 points. It is not too much, but quite enough for XFX GeForce 7600 GT XXX Edition to compete successfully with Radeon X1800 XL. The performance boost was relatively moderate because the second test in this group is similar to the Game 2 test in 3DMark05, so the GPU frequency increase can hardly make up for the fewer vertex processors.

The XFX solution manages to get much farther ahead of the reference card in SM3.0/HDR test set. The difference here makes 271 points. However, it hardly affects the overall picture: overclocked GeForce 7600 GT runs close to Radeon X1800 XL, just like we’ve seen before.

The mainstream graphics cards performance in 3DMark06 with enabled FSAA is extremely low and doesn’t reach even 10fps rate. As a result, the discrepancy is too high to fairly evaluate the performance of the testing participants. So, we decided that it would be better if we tested these cards only with enabled anisotropic filtering.

The effect from higher clock speeds of XFX GeForce 7600 GT XXX Edition is hardly seen in SM2.0 graphics test. We can notice it only in 1280x1024 resolution, where our hero catches up with Radeon X1900 GT.

The second SM2.0 test reveals a totally different picture. XFX GeForce 7600 GT XXX Edition outperforms Radeon X1800 GTO only in 1024x768. In 1280x1024 and up the performance of these graphics cards levels out. Since this test doesn’t really require 24 TMUs unlike the first one, Radeon X1900 GT with only 8 vertex processors but 1/3 more pixel shader execution units takes the first prize from GeForce 7900 GT.

The first SM3.0/HDR test loads the pixel processors even more, so XFX GeForce 7600 GT XXX Edition fails to withstand the power of Radeon X1800 XL with 16 pixel shader processing units. Not to mention Radeon X1900 GT, that manages to outperform even GeForce 7900 GT here.

The performance in the second SM3.0/HDR test depends mostly on the efficient implementation of Cascaded Shadow Maps (CSM). XFX GeForce 7600 GT XXX Edition performs slightly better here: it even manages to get ahead of Radeon X1800 XL in resolutions below 1600x1200.

It is really hard to explain where the significant performance advantage of our XFX GeForce 7600 GT XXX Edition over the reference solution comes from. Our hero didn’t reveal any extraordinary results in any of the benchmarks from both testing suites. Moreover, the difference between them never exceeded 1fps.

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