With Unreal Tournament 2003
Epic's Unreal Tournament series has consistently been
one of the most popular first person shooters, and by no
coincidence is it also one of the most commonly used
video card benchmarks. We continued our DirectX
benchmarking with a completely patched, retail version
Unreal Tournament 2003. When benchmarking with UT2003,
we use a utility that ensures all of the cards are being
tested with the exact same in-game settings and
"High-Quality" graphical options. We ran the UT2003
benchmarks at resolutions of 1024x768 and 1600x1200
without anti-aliasing, and then again with 2X AA
enabled. We kept Anisotropic filtering disabled in
UT2003 because NVIDIA and ATi aren't doing the same
level of trilinear filtering when aniso and trilinear
are enabled together.
anti-aliasing, the DeltaChrome S8 and S8 Nitro performed
admirably in the Unreal Tournament 2003 benchmark.
Once again, they were the lowest performing cards coming in
about 20% behind the nearest competition, but at frame rates
hovering around 100 FPS at 1024x768, we won't really
complain. At 1600x1200, the DeltaChromes couldn't
quite break the magical 60FPS mark, but in general, anyone
in the market for a card in this price range can't expect
playable frame rates at resolutions this high anyway.
Enabling anti-aliasing with the DeltaChromes in this test
caused a massive hit in frame rate, nearly halving their
performance at 1024x768. At 1600x1200 with AA enabled
though, the S8 Nitro nearly caught the 9600 XT.
Perhaps with some further driver optimizations and a bump in
clock speed, the DeltaChromes may be able to climb out of
the basement in the high-res UT2003 test. Time will
Stealth Pixel Shading
Splinter Cell's version 1.2 patch includes three
pre-recorded demos and incorporates a previously
unavailable benchmarking tool. The demos included
with the patch are somewhat limited by CPU performance,
however, so we used the custom Oil Rig demo created by
the folks at Beyond 3D to test with this game.
Beyond 3D's demo removes two CPU intensive routines
while increasing dependence on Pixel Shader performance.
Shaders are used to render the realistic looking ocean
water surrounding the Oil Rig in the demo, as well as
simulating a night vision effect.
As we've mentioned in the past,
anti-aliasing doesn't work with Splinter cell (at least
with the current version). Due to this fact, we do
not have any AA scores listed in the graphs below.
The put it
mildly, the S3 DeltaChrome S8 and S8 Nitro got annihilated
at both resolutions in the Splinter Cell benchmark. At
1024x768, the faster of the DeltaChrome cards - the S8 Nitro
- was about 45% slower than the GeForce FX 5700 Ultra, which
came in slightly behind the Radon 9600 XT. With the
resolution cranked up to 1600x1200, the GeForce FX 5700
Ultra couldn't quite catch the Radeon 9600 XT, but it was
still about 65% faster than either of the DeltaChromes.
Like with Halo, the S3 cards also had a slight rendering
problem in this test. At one point late in the demo,
the DeltaChromes did not render a shadow cast by a large
grate just above the water properly. Other than this minor
problem, however, the rest of the demo looked great on the DeltaChromes.
Final Fantasy & Gun Metal Tests