Performance in Comanche 4 Demo
The gaming Comanche 4 Demo test loads the system really heavily, consuming almost all the computing resources of the CPU. We know that graphics cards without their own DSP usually make the system CPU do part of their job. Therefore, we should be able to clearly see the system performance drop on the graphs below:
Performance in 3DMark03
3DMark03 test package includes the whole bunch of various tests helping to estimate the performance of various computer components. Especially for sound cards tests the software package developers included a number of audio tests as well. Starting from the very beginning and until the window with the results pops up, the system plays the same air fight scene in three different modes: No Sounds, 24 Sounds and 60 Sounds. Of course, of we draw a graph basing on these three values, we will be able to evaluate the system performance drop caused by enabled sound. For Sound Blaster MP3+ this performance drop appeared pretty tangible:
It is interesting that Sound Blaster MP3+ supports 60 DS3D sounds playback in 3DMark03, while most contemporary sound cards that I have recently tested do not work in this mode at all.
The gaming benchmark results of our today’s hero indicated that Sound Blaster MP3+ would really show what it is capable of only in case of a more powerful system. As for the minimum system requirements set by the manufacturer, only the Windows default sounds will be able to play without any bad impediments. Well, maybe I am exaggerating a little bit but you will definitely agree that the manufacturers usually set lower system requirements than they should actually be. Of course, the gaming benchmarks will never give you a complete idea of the sound card performance. So, I suppose we should try playing some games to add to the picture.
I decided to check how well will Sound Blaster MP3+ work in Need for Speed Hot Pursuit 2 (when I ran this game with Audigy2 on the same system, I didn’t notice and slow-downs or the like). Having played for while I have to admit that in the heaviest scenes, where a lot of visible objects had to be calculated and drawn, I could notice sharp jumps, when the car couldn’t be controlled any more. In fact, you can eliminate this problem if you slightly reduce the level of detail in the game.