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Benchmarks - Level: Magellan, Continued

Aquanox - Bringing 3D To Its Knees
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FSAA 1024x768-32 : The cards take another performance hit when anti aliasing is enabled. Even the likes of a Ti500 or a RADEON 8500 are barely able to offer playable frame rates at this resolution.

Conclusion

While current video cards have no trouble with older games like Quake 3, running them at record speeds of around 150fps even at high resolutions, the new crop of DirectX 8 games can bring even these performance monsters to their knees. The CPU is really only of secondary importance, as the scores of the Athlon 1333 system show.

The scores shown here are average frame rates. Performance may be even lower in the game, depending on the complexity of the scene, the number of enemies on screen, etc. Activating FSAA is the final blow, bringing the frame counter lower still. Yet the trend is pointing towards ever more complex 3D engines (due in large part to the Xbox). If you're planning on buying a GF2 or R7500 now, you may find yourself lowering the detail level or the resolution in the near future, just to make upcoming games playable. Even a GF3 Ti200 reaches its limits rather quickly. Nonetheless, don't panic just yet - games that make extensive use of pixel or vertex shaders are still a bit further off on the horizon. In today's games, you'd need a magnifying glass to even find any of these new effects (as in Comanche 4).

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