Asus A8N SLI Premium - NF4 SLI For AMD Refined
UT2004 and Doom 3 CPU Tests
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 some of 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.
Here the two Asus A8N SLI boards show themselves to be just a few frames behind the MSI K8N Neo Platinum SLI. We would attribute small difference to the on-board sound solutions that are on each of the motherboards. The MSI board actually has a full-fledged Creative SoundBlaster Live! 24 chip powering its sound processing, so even though the A8N SLI boards may be timed a bit more aggressively at the CPU level, the K8N Neo4's dedicated sound chip, gives it a slight edge. Regardless, with a similar sound card installed in one of the A8N SLI Premium's PCI slots, we're fairly certain the net result would be another too-close-to-call finish.
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 / Memory-bound than anything else.
This time the Asus boards show a slight advantage over the MSI nForce 4 SLI board, but again this benchmark essentially shows comparable performance all around. Turn up the resolution and graphics settings and the numbers would map out even tighter. We'll do just that for you, along with some SLI dual GPU driven testing, next.