New to this system since the last review is the Asus A8N32-SLI Deluxe Motherboard and Seagate Barracuda 300GB hard drive, which contained a fresh install of Windows XP. The EVGA and XFX GeForce 7900 GTX graphics cards were used to form an SLI configuration.
EVGA and XFX GeForce 7900 GTX - 650MHz Core/800MHz Memory
ForceWare Beta Driver 91.29
3DMark05 - v1.2.0
Doom 3 - v1.0.1
Far Cry - v1.33 Build 1395
F.E.A.R. - v1.05
Oblivion - v1.0.228
Quake 4 - v1.2
All benchmarks were run at the widescreen resolution of 1920x1200 using the best quality image setting, unless otherwise noted. In-game graphics settings were configured to their highest quality as documented in this review. Each benchmark contains results from the GeForce 7900 GTX running in a single configuration (white bar) and SLI configuration (blue bar), and the GeForce 7950 GX2 (light blue bar).
With 3DMark05, an overall score based on the performance of the three synthetic game tests is shown with no, 2X, and 4X antialiasing enabled. The last result shows 4X AA performance with texture filtering optimizations disabled, which is accomplished by changing the driver image setting to best quality.
The quality and best quality image settings as well as supersampling antialiasing were tested using Far Cry's Regulator demo.
Far Cry Results
Results from the F.E.A.R. in-game performance test with 2X and 4X AA and with soft shadows only, where AA is not used.
High Dynamic Range (HDR) comes into play with Oblivion, although the results are from a static outdoor scene.
Doom 3 and Quake 4
Leaving out OpenGL game performance in an NVIDIA graphics card preview is like committing blasphemy. Ever since the introduction of the hardware accelerated version of Quake, or GLQuake, there has been something special about the smoothness, performance, stability, and look and feel of id Software's game engines running on NVIDIA graphics hardware.
I discovered that in-game antialiasing was not being applied when I tested Doom 3 and Quake 4 on the GeForce 7900 GTX. But here are results from the GeForce 7950 GX2, which appear to be correct, although I had no way to confirm the results.
Doom 3 Results
Quake 4 performance is based on a gameplay scenario. The 4X AA results appear to be consistent with the 4X AA results from the GeForce 7900 GTX in that review.
Quake 4 Results
Fans of the genre are no doubt awaiting the debut of Enemy Territory: Quake Wars.
Based on what I've experienced over the past three days, the GeForce 7950 GX2 is yet another top quality product from NVIDIA. The drivers and new driver control panel may need some fine tuning, but that didn't prevent me from using the product, which I am giving our highest award.