I agree, from what I see 3D Mark 2003 is very video card dependant.
I like this seeing as we're essentially compairing our video cards. And in all honesty a Pentium IV 2.4Ghz with a TNT2 M64 video card will not be faster then an Athlon 900Mhz with a Radeon 9500 Pro.
It's a synthetic benchmark that actually uses some of the futur options that will be available. The thing is games will never fully be DX9.0, they will always keep some elements of DX8.1 and 7.0a.
Unreal 2 is mostly a DX 7.0a game with some features like Cube mapping etc that are DX8.0. They only raised the polygon levels.
Which is why it's good to see Futuremark keep some DX7.0 level tests in there benchmark suite.
Are nVidia cards at a disadvantage? Yes, because they're technologically inferior on the DirectX features side (not the GeForceFX but all the ones that came before) they have issues running games that are built on Pixel shader 1.4.
It might sound funny but the GeForce4Ti is inferior technology wise to even an R200 (Radeon 8500) when it comes to Pixel Shaders, Anisotropic filtering and overall Image quality. The GeForce4Ti does however possess a stronger Vertex shading engine seeing as it's using 2 of them in parrallel as well as having higher clock speeds and a better memory controller (it's a crossbar memory controller).
So before we go judge the performance of the GeForce4Ti is these tests we have agree that it does not have the technological support to achieve higher scores.
The difference between the GeForceFX and all the older GeForce cards is staggering. It's a completely redesigned architecture that was built to be very ATi-like in respects to making it more futurproof.
The Radeon 9700 Pro is very nvidia-like with respects to being very brute in force. Using a better memory controller(the best in the industry) as well as having a better performance to Mhz ratio (astounding can you imagine an R300 clocked at 500Mhz?).
Take it or leave it 3D Mark 2003 is here to stay. It's now the Dawn of Cinematic rendering thanks to R300.u
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