Comanche 4 Benchmark is about as CPU limited, as we've ever
seen, while testing here in the labs at HotHardware.
The game engine tends to rely heavily on the CPU for its
Flight Model Physics calculations, even though the Graphics
eye-candy in this Sim is very lush and beautiful. To
alleviate the graphics bottleneck even more so however, we
also set the game engine down to 640X480 resolution, which
allows the CPU/Motherboard combination to run a little more
Novalogic Comanche 4 and Quake 3 Arena Timedemos
and OpenGL Gaming Performance
Once again, as
you can see, the spread isn't all that wide, until we
begin to overclock. The IC7-G and P4C800 were within
3% of each other and even with respect to the Intel board.
The Asus P4C800 does show a slight edge again however and
one can't help think that Asus really went the distance in
tuning this board. At overclocked speeds, things
tighten up quite a bit between the Abit and Asus board,
pointing to the strong possibility that this benchmark is
weighted more on the system bus bandwidth, than raw CPU
speed per se.
And lastly we
have our Quake 3 Time Demo runs for you here. Until
the arrival of Doom3 (and even then who knows), we'll most
likely continue to include this benchmark, since it is
such a widely recognized performance metric.
In this test,
we used the "Fastest" setting, which sets the resolution
to 512X384 and most all color, texture and lighting
features to their lowest levels. This test is
basically a CPU/Motherboard Drag Race, since the Radeon
9700Pro isn't even close to breaking a sweat at these
settings. At default speeds we see some pretty wide
variances, due largely to CPU and Memory bandwidth
differences of the boards, at stock speeds and while
overclocked. At stock speed, the P4C800 bests the
Abit IC7-G by over 5%. However, the tables turn
significantly at overclocked speeds and Abit's 3.38GHz
speed beats out the Asus 3.45GHz overclock, oddly enough.
Again, the margin is slight however but this does suggest,
that while overclocked the Asus board relaxes timings
slightly, to maintain stability. This could account
for the P4C800's slightly better "overclockability"
factor. However, a BIOS revision of two from now,
Abit can easily close this gap. As a matter of fact,
during testing of the IC7-G, Abit sent us a new BIOS rev,
that increased performance and overclocked stability with
Well people, I
think it is safe to say we're looking at two very fine new
motherboards here from Abit and Asus. Intel's new
i875P Canterwood chipset is really where the P4 needed to
go, in order to compete head to head with the AMD
platforms out there, from a price/performance standpoint.
We've been able to find the IC7-G (note the "G" denotes
Gigabit LAN on board) for around $225 on various online
search engines. The P4C800 Deluxe seems to be
weighing in at around $190 or so. The difference in
cost can most likely be attributed to the fact that the
IC7-G bundle is much better than the P4C800 kit.
Abit gives you the additional USB 2.0 backplate, SATA data
and power cables, as well as their "Serillel" converter,
in their bundle, which drives the cost up a bit but gives
you everything you'll need to build up a new system from
scratch and then some. What's more impressive
perhaps, is that you can also get an
Abit IC7 (note no "G" on the end here), which doesn't
have Gigabit Ethernet on board, nor the extra Silicon
Image SATA controller but lists for around $150 at several
online resellers. We haven't seen a "non-Deluxe"
version of the Asus P4C800 yet but that may or may not be
coming, down the road.
completely torn between these two new Canterwood
Motherboard actually. On one hand, you have Abit's
great SoftMenu Award driven BIOS, with its fantastic
bundle, Intel GigE and Silicon Image SATA RAID
controllers. For sure, the IC7-G performed admirably
and it overclocked with grace, in typical Abit fashion.
On the other hand, you have the P4C800, which displayed a
slight performance edge over all, had fantastic
overclocking capabilities, despite its lower CPU voltage
range, and comes in at a lower price point but with a
lesser pack-in bundle. If it weren't for the use of
the AMI BIOS on the P4C800 (sorry, it's just not the same
for us, without Award under the hood and boy did it play
havoc with our flat panel), the scales would have tipped
in Asus' favor. For now, it's a dead-heat in
the Abit IC7-G
a HotHardware Heat Meter rating of:
Asus P4C800 also scores a Heat Meter rating