Abit SLI Motherboard Showcase
UT 2004 & Doom 3
To start our in-game testing, we did some low-resolution benchmarking with Unreal Tournament 2004. When testing with UT 2004, we use a specific set of game engine initialization settings that ensure all of the systems are being benchmarked with the exact same in-game settings and graphical options. Like the other in-game tests in this review, we used a "Low-Quality" graphical settings and low screen resolution which isolates CPU and memory performance.
By now you've all heard that the Athlon 64 is an excellent gaming CPU, and we concur. Both of the Athlon 64 powered systems outpaced the NI8 SLI here, but their margins of victory weren't terribly large. Nonetheless, the Abit Fatal1ty AN8 SLI came out on top here, followed by the Sapphire board and then the NI8 SLI.
For our next game test, we benchmarked all of the test systems using a custom multi-player Doom 3 timedemo. We cranked the resolution down to 640 x 480, and configured the game to run at its "Low-Quality" graphics setting. Although Doom 3 typically taxes today's high-end GPUs, when it's configured at these minimal settings it too is more CPU and memory-bound than anything else.
Our custom Doom 3 benchmark results mirror what we saw with Unreal Tournament 2004, although the deltas separating the Intel powered Abit NI8 SLI from the AMD based systems was a bit smaller. Regardless, the story is pretty much the same, with the Fatal1ty AN8 SLI taking the top spot, trailed by the PI-A9RX480 and then the NI8 SLI.