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Old 06-19-08, 06:03 PM   #1
Maverickman
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Default What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

I've always believed that you have to take benchmarks with a grain of salt. They give you some idea about how a card will perform, but they don't give you a complete evaluation of the gameplay experience. A case in point is the GeForce GTX 280. Many reviewers have stated that Nvidia's newest card is little faster than a 9800 GX2 or 8800/9800 SLI setup in games like Crysis, COD4 and even in synthetic benchmarks like 3DMark 2006. However, these benchmarks reveal little about what a GTX 280 owner will experience while playing these games. He will experience gameplay that is much smoother than with a 9800 GX2. My 9800 GX2 would stutter all over the place in Crysis at 1920X1200 with everything set on High. Now I can play this game with my GTX 280 with three settings on Very High and everything else on High, and the game hardly stutters at all. The same is true for COD4 which suffered from microstutters with the 9800 GX2. Even the Medusa demo which stuttered all over the place with the 9800 GX2 is smooth as silk with the GTX 280. I think the 1GB of onboard memory and that 512-bit memory interface are the best features of the card.

In sum, beware of focusing on benchmarks. Get the card and judge for yourself. The GTX 280 is not wallet friendly, but it affords the ABSOLUTE BEST gaming experience that can be had today.
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Old 06-19-08, 06:11 PM   #2
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maverickman View Post
I've always believed that you have to take benchmarks with a grain of salt. They give you some idea about how a card will perform, but they don't give you a complete evaluation of the gameplay experience. A case in point is the GeForce GTX 280. Many reviewers have stated that Nvidia's newest card is little faster than a 9800 GX2 or 8800/9800 SLI setup in games like Crysis, COD4 and even in synthetic benchmarks like 3DMark 2006. However, these benchmarks reveal little about what a GTX 280 owner will experience while playing these games. He will experience gameplay that is much smoother than with a 9800 GX2. My 9800 GX2 would stutter all over the place in Crysis at 1920X1200 with everything set on High. Now I can play this game with my GTX 280 with three settings on Very High and everything else on High, and the game hardly stutters at all. The same is true for COD4 which suffered from microstutters with the 9800 GX2. Even the Medusa demo which stuttered all over the place with the 9800 GX2 is smooth as silk with the GTX 280. I think the 1GB of onboard memory and that 512-bit memory interface are the best features of the card.

In sum, beware of focusing on benchmarks. Get the card and judge for yourself. The GTX 280 is not wallet friendly, but it affords the ABSOLUTE BEST gaming experience that can be had today.


Yea. I was briefly a 9800GX2 owner and hated it. Returned it due to the choppiness. Unfortunately, most people that owned the 9800GX2 never noticed this, reviewers NEVER mentioned it. It didn't take me spending $650 to realize it was there though. Went to a 8800GTX and its butter smooth for me.
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Old 06-19-08, 06:23 PM   #3
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

Most early reviewers get payed by the relevant manufacturers (ATI/Nvidia) to do their articles, so obviously anything too negative is left out or ignored
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Old 06-19-08, 06:27 PM   #4
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

I don't have a problem at all with SLI. GT's are superb for SLI, very good performance for <300 and no noticeable stuttering. I'm still holding out to see what ATI can do. These two GT's are faster than GTX280 for far less money, and i'm not buying two 280's (although two 260's might be nice ).
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Old 06-19-08, 06:33 PM   #5
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

I'm glad I didn't jump on the GX2 train. I stayed with my 8800 GTX, and there are no microstutters to report.... ever.

This is a very good reason to get a GTX 280 though.
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Old 06-19-08, 06:39 PM   #6
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

Yes exactly. The 512 bit bus and 1gb of ram is just siiick.

The 280 has some serious potential.

You thought your 8800's were a good investment a few years ago ??

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Old 06-19-08, 06:51 PM   #7
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

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Yea. I was briefly a 9800GX2 owner and hated it. Returned it due to the choppiness. Unfortunately, most people that owned the 9800GX2 never noticed this, reviewers NEVER mentioned it. It didn't take me spending $650 to realize it was there though. Went to a 8800GTX and its butter smooth for me.
I did elude to the minimum frame rate in our review, which happens to be one of the reasons I only gave it a base hit award.

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Even more important than the average frame rate is the minimum frame rate. Based on the number of relative changes that are negative (in red) when compared to the GeForce 8800 Ultra, there is a slight cause for concern with the minimum frame rate provided by the GeForce 9800 GX2. Hopefully, these deficiencies are driver related.
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Old 06-19-08, 06:55 PM   #8
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

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I did elude to the minimum frame rate in our review, which happens to be one of the reasons I only gave it a base hit award.
Well that still downplayed how much it affected the overall playability with the card. RS Vegas 2 would actually stop to load textures, the pause was a few seconds. GOW was very bad with stutter. Even Assassin's Creed would stutter for the first 10 - 15 seconds when loading up a savegame, after that it was smooth most the time. Since swapping out for the 8800GTX I experience none of this any longer.

I was really bothered with the stuttering and ended up RMA'ing and washing my hands of it. Driver Heaven mentioned it, as did your review, but in the end had I known how bad this was I would've never even picked up a 9800GX2. It wasnt just a minimum frame rate issue, GOW, Vegas 2, AC and others would actually pause breifly while loading textures. Thats inexcusable.

I know a few others like Newsl1 that also returned their cards believing this problem was too much to ignore.
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Old 06-19-08, 07:40 PM   #9
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

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I don't have a problem at all with SLI. GT's are superb for SLI, very good performance for <300 and no noticeable stuttering. I'm still holding out to see what ATI can do. These two GT's are faster than GTX280 for far less money, and i'm not buying two 280's (although two 260's might be nice ).
What, is Rev the elephant in the room? Answer the question: why should people get the 280 when two 8800gts sell for so cheap? Do they really stutter as bad as the GX2??
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Old 06-19-08, 09:22 PM   #10
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

It is scary smooth in every game I've tested so far; Assassin's Creed, TRL, Jericho, Oblivion, Crysis, and AoC. I'm getting ready to try DiRT in a bit.
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Old 06-20-08, 04:21 AM   #11
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

Indeed. people should understand that SLI has its issues for the extra performance it delivers.
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Old 06-20-08, 04:41 AM   #12
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Default Re: What the benchmarks DON'T Tell you about the GTX 280!!!

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I completely agree, super smooth gameplay with the GTX 280!
hmm..must not bite....already paid for 7 day trip......must not add extra $$$$$ to the credit card.....
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