EVGA e-GeForce 7800 GS CO Superclock AGP 8X Review - Page 3 of 3
Review By Mike Chambers - March 2, 2006
PERFORMANCE - CONTINUED
OpenGL performance is measured with Quake 4, which may provide us with a glimpse of the performance we can expect from Enemy Territory Quake Wars, which gamers have been eagerly awaiting since the Doom 3 engine was finalized.
Unfortunately, a fix for the Quake 4 timedemo feature, which is not indicative of gameplay performance, continues to be neglected. In that case, we will turn to a gameplay walkthrough, which can be seen in the following video clips - full (~22MB) and partial (~3MB).
Click Image to Enlarge
The above scene depicts the intense gameplay that the Quake series of games has provided over the years. As the capabilities of graphics hardware advance, extensions that expose new hardware features to developers are continuously being added to the OpenGL language. The advancements in graphics technology can be seen in each subsequent version of Quake.
Quake 4 Settings
Resolution and antialiasing settings similar to F.E.A.R. were used for Quake 4 gameplay performance as its graphics engine is also demanding.
Quake 4 Gameplay Performance
A resolution of 1024x768 with 2X antialiasing offered excellent playability in Quake 4. Playable results were also delivered by the e-GeForce 7800 GS CO AGP at 1280x1024 with 2X antialiasing and at 1600x1200 without antialiasing. Impressive results indeed from an AGP graphics card.
Splinter Cell Chaos Theory
Splinter Cell Chaos Theory finalizes the games used to measure the performance of the e-GeForce 7800 GS CO AGP. Chaos Theory is loaded with Shader Model 3.0 features including High Dynamic Range (HDR) rendering.
HDR On vs. HDR Off
Although hardware-assisted HDR rendering techniques are relatively new to gaming, complex special effects will increase as the technology matures. One advantage of HDR is shown in the above comparison from Chaos Theory as floating point precision helps to eliminate the banding from rendering fog.
Splinter Cell Settings
Again, the highest quality in-game graphics effects are being utilized.
Splinter Cell Chaos Theory Performance
At stock frequencies, the EVGA e-GeForce 7800 GS CO AGP registered a GPU core temperature of 43C during standard 2D mode with the case closed. Running the rthdribl (Real-Time High Dynamic Range Image-Based Lighting) demo caused the temperature to increase to 58C.
Clock speeds of the EVGA e-GeForce 7800 GS CO Superclock AGP out of the box are a 460MHz core and 1.35GHz memory. I achieved a modest and artifact-free overclock to a 505MHz core and 1.50MHz memory. In the F.E.A.R. and Quake 4 gameplay scenarios, the overclocked speeds provided an increase in the average frame rate of 4% to 7%.
As NVIDIA was establishing itself during the transition to the PCI-Express standard, they examined the high-end AGP market and concluded that it remained a profitable venture. In two years, the AGP crowd finally gets a high-end graphics part that outperforms the GeForce 6800 Ultra and features a significantly improved Shader Model 3.0 engine.
DVI and VGA Connections
Click Image to Enlarge
The EVGA e-GeForce 7800 GS CO AGP was tested using two of the most graphically demanding games on the market and it delivered a smooth and satisfying experience. Being limited to 16 pixel pipelines will make it difficult for the GeForce 7800 GS AGP to reach the holy grail of gaming at 1600x1200 with 4X antialiasing.
However, the main benefit of the e-GeForce 7800 GS AGP is that it provides a new choice. A new choice that allows existing AGP users with a fast CPU to upgrade their mid-range graphics card and extend the life of their system.