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Futuremark's 'Vantage'

Graphics Test 1: Jane Nash

This test is supposed to represent a game that’s set indoors. Jane Nash, a female character who’s fairly similar to Ruby (ATI’s demo super starlet), arrives at an enemy base on a jet-ski and leaves in a speedboat that transforms itself into a plane, pursued by guards... While the rendering of this scene is really very close artistically to 3DMark05 and 06 (closer to an animated cartoon with poor animation of the characters and their faces, except for Jane Nash herself), the rendering of the water is emphasized here, and it’s impressive. But despite the times, Futuremark’s demomaker origins are still discernible.

With numerous dynamic lights, complex surface lighting models, and PCF filtering for the shadow maps, it’s very power-hungry. As always, the scenes aren’t fluid, even with the currently available high-end cards. Here are the results we got with our reference system, using the Catalyst 8.4 and ForceWare 175.12 beta drivers - which we’ll talk about more later. Note that our GeForce 9600 GT is a model with a GPU overclocked to 720 MHz instead of the stock 650 MHz.

Not surprisingly, 3DMark was very sensitive to multi-GPU cards - the HD 3870 X2 performed 95% better here than the HD 3870 (despite the latter’s much higher memory frequencies). The rest wasn’t very surprising, though the spread between the 9600 GT (despite it being overclocked) and the 8800 GT was wider than in current games (see these averages as an example).