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NVIDIA vs. 3Dfx - TNT vs. the Voodoos

Expendable Benchmark Results

Expendable is one of the new games Rage will launch by the end of this year. It is a DirectX 6 game, which means that it's taking advantage of the new features of DirectX 6, one of them is e.g. multi-texturing. Expendable is still at a pretty early stage, but it's running wonderfully. You will see that Expendable is requiring a whole lot of CPU power, so that the CPU and not the graphics card is the delimiter of the frame rate. You will see that the 3Dfx products don't look as shiny when playing in the same ballpark as TNT, which is Direct3D.

You can see that it's currently still quite tough running Expendable on a K6-2 300, even at a resolution of only 640x480. TNT seems to have the least performance loss in the driver, making it the fastest chip in this comparison.

At 1024x768 there is a strange occurrence with TNT. It seems to hit its fill rate maximum when driven by a Pentium II 400. This is the only explanation why it's suddenly slower than Voodoo2 or Banshee, since it's faster with the other two CPUs. We shouldn't forget that TNT has got the lowest pixel fill rate of the three, 90 Mpixels/s, Voodoo2 SLI has got 180 Mpixels/s and Banshee has got 100 Mpixels/s, which could be the reason for the lower performance.

Now lets have a look at the lowest frame rates as well.

Again, TNT seems to have the least driver overhead and is thus scoring best at 640x480.

The lowest frame rate shows a different picture than the average frame rate. TNT is here better than Banshee. However, I'm not quite clear why Voodoo2 SLI is faster than TNT, in case of the lowest frame rate it cannot be the fill rate.

  • Pure nostalgia. Tom's Hardware is awesome for keeping 14 year old articles around, I read the whole thing and it brought back memories.
  • xkm1948
    Ahh now this brings back some old memories.