ASUS EAH3850 TOP Graphics Card

Test System and 3DMark06 Test Results

For testing the ASUS EAH3850 TOP, we used an Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 (2.13GHz) on an Abit Fatal1ty FP-IN9 SLI motherboard. We also used 2GB of Corsair DDR2 (TWIN2X1024A-5400UL) RAM and a 120GB Maxtor SATA hard drive. The ASUS EAH3850 TOP was compared to an NVIDIA GeForce 8600 GT, NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT 256MB and an ATI Radeon X1950 Pro. Note: Because we are using both DirectX 9 and DirectX 10 capable cards, we will not be enabling DX10 effects in the DX10 games in order to provide an apples to apples comparison.

HotHardware Test System
Intel C2D Powered

Processor -

Motherboard -

Video Cards -

Memory -

Audio -

Hard Drive -


Hardware Used:
Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 (2.13GHz)

Abit Fatal1ty FP-IN9 SLI
nForce 650i SLI chipset

ATI Radeon HD 3850
NVIDIA GeForce 8600 GT
NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT 256MB
ATI Radeon X1950 Pro

2048MB Corsair XMS2 DDR2-675MHz

Integrated on board

Maxtor DiamondMax Plus 9

120GB - 7200RPM - SATA

Operating System -
Chipset Drivers -
DirectX -

Video Drivers

Synthetic (DX) -
DirectX -
DirectX -
DirectX -
OpenGL -
Relevant Software:
Windows Vista
nForce Drivers v8.43
DirectX 10

NVIDIA Forceware v169.25

ATI Catalyst v7.11

Benchmarks Used:
3DMark06 v1.1.0
Crysis SP Demo
Half-Life 2: Episode 2
Company of Heroes v1.71
Enemy Territory: Quake Wars

Performance Comparisons with 3DMark06

Futuremark recently launched a brand new version of its popular benchmark, 3DMark06. The new version of the benchmark is updated in a number of ways and now includes not only Shader Model 2.0 tests but also Shader Model 3.0 and HDR tests as well. Some of the assets from 3DMark05 have been re-used, but the scenes are now rendered with much more geometric detail, and the shader complexity is vastly increased as well. Max shader length in 3DMark05 was 96 instructions, while 3DMark06 ups the number of instructions to 512. 3DMark06 also employs much more lighting, and there is extensive use of soft shadows. With 3DMark06, Futuremark has also updated how the final score is tabulated. In this latest version of the benchmark, SM 2.0 and HDR / SM3.0 tests are weighted, and the CPU score is factored into the final tally as well.

There are two comparisons that we are going to focus on throughout these test results pages: 1) the ASUS EAH3850 TOP versus the reference Radeon HD 3850, and 2) the ASUS EAH3850 TOP versus the reference GeForce 8800 GT 256MB card.

For the overall score in 3DMark06, the EAH3850 TOP bests all of the cards we tested by a respectable margin. If we look at the individual tests, though, the EAH3850 TOP doesn't quite keep up with the 256MB 8800 GT in the Shader Model 2.0 test, but it wins the Shader Model 3.0 / HDR test by almost 300 points. This is the kind of back and forth we are expecting from the EAH3850 TOP and the 8800 GT 256MB, so let's continue on to see if our expectations are correct.

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