Paradigm SHIFT: MainGear's Unique Gaming Rig Tested

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3DMark Vantage

Futuremark 3DMark Vantage
Synthetic DirectX Gaming

3DMark Vantage

The latest version of Futuremark's synthetic 3D gaming benchmark, 3DMark Vantage, is specifically bound to Windows Vista-based systems because it uses some advanced visual technologies that are only available with DirectX 10, which isn't available on previous versions of Windows.  3DMark Vantage isn't simply a port of 3DMark06 to DirectX 10 though.  With this latest version of the benchmark, Futuremark has incorporated two new graphics tests, two new CPU tests, several new feature tests, in addition to support for the latest PC hardware.  We tested the graphics cards here with 3DMark Vantage's "High" and "Extreme" preset options which use increasing levels of detail (and higher resolutions). As always, tests were looped 3x.

Origin Genesis: 2 x Radeon HD 5970, Maingear Shift: 2 x GeForce GTX 480

The Shift's massive advantage in 3DMark Vantage's CPU score is thanks to the presence of an NVIDIA GPU, making this one of the worst "CPU" benchmarks in history. What it does represent (and the reason we've kept it) is the performance difference between running PhysX on a GPU and running it on a CPU. Since we're not specifically benchmarking PhysX performance in any games, we've given a nod to it here. 

The GTX 480s keep pace with the twin 5970s here; ATI's quad GPU configuration is just seven percent faster than a pair of NV's high-end Fermis.


Origin Genesis: 2 x Radeon HD 5970, Maingear Shift: 2 x GeForce GTX 480

The performance delta between the two systems rises once we move to "Extreme" detail settings. The Origin is over 30 percent faster than the Shift at this level. Keep an eye on this gap as we continue—3DV isn't a DX11 test, and SLI/Crossfire configurations have often scaled more effectively in Futuremark benchmarks than they ever managed in real-world titles. 

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