Is it true, will GeForce put an end to CPU-scaling? Will you be able to run any game with any CPU as long as you've got GeForce? We tried to find the answer by running each of the above benchmarks with a Celeron 400 at 640x480x16 to keep the impact of the fill rate as low as possible. We ran those benchmarks on GeForce w/DDR and TNT2 Ultra.
The following chart shows you the percentage of the Celeron 400-score compared to the Pentium III 550 score. This means that a score of 69% means that with this card a Celeron 400 scored 69% of the Pentium III 550 score. We would obviously expect that with GeForce the scores are as close to 100% as possible. See yourself if it achieves that.
You're probably just as disappointed as I was when I ran the benchmarks. GeForce scales almost identical to TNT2, only in Descent 3 you can find a noticeable difference. The only real exception is the TreeMark. I was impressed to see that Celeron 400 scored the identical result as Pentium III 550 with GeForce, while with TNT2 the score was only 75%. After talking to NVIDIA about this issue I was told that most of the CPU-power is currently lost inside the rather young GeForce-drivers and that the CPU-scaling will get less once the drivers have matured.
The Facts Behind 3D-Games And A Possible Usage Of Geforce256's Integrated T&L-Engine
|The term CPU-scaling in combination with NVIDIA's new GeForce256 GPU is becoming more and more an object of discussions and speculations. NVIDIA's comments to this topic add to the confusion, claiming that GeForce's 3D-performance is rather independent of the CPU-power, regardless if a K6, a Celeron, a Pentium III or a Athlon is being used. Fact is that games will ALWAYS be depending on CPU-performance, especially in case of complex or multiplayer games, where the CPU has a lot more to do than computing transform and lighting. The bandwidth of the system buses, like memory bandwidth, PCI-bandwidth and AGP-bandwidth are another factor that impacts GeForce just as much as any other 3D-chip without integrated T&L. Nevertheless, GeForce256 can reduce CPU-scaling. Games with complex graphics and rather simple AI and physics benefit greatly from GeForce's T&L-engine and even the other games should at least show a difference in CPU-scaling. Having said that, we should be aware that games have to fulfill some requirements to make usage of an integrated T&L.
- Cube Environment Mapping
- Before We Look At The Benchmarks
- The Benchmark Results - Descent III 640x480
- The Benchmark Results - Descent III 1024x768
- The Benchmark Results - Descent III 1600x1200
- The Benchmark Results - Expendable Demo 640x480
- The Benchmark Results - Expendable Demo 1024x768
- The Benchmark Results - Expendable Demo 1600x1200
- The Benchmark Results - Quake 3 Test 640x480
- The Benchmark Results - Quake 3 Test 1024x768
- The Benchmark Results - Quake 3 Test 1600x1200
- The Benchmark Results - Shogo
- The Benchmark Results - TreeMark
- CPU Scaling