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Reviewed by: Bryan Pizzuti, Carl Nelson [02.24.03]
Card Manufacturer: Powercolor
GPU Manufacturer: SiS
MSRP: $125

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As mentioned, this is a new benchmark at HCW.  We are using this to replace the (rather aged) Villagemark benchmark to measure Z-Culling performance.  GL_EXT_reme also measures fillrate, and T&L Performance, which is very helpful.

Ok, once again the TI4200 has a clear advantage here.  From these result, we can see that there is no effective change to the framerate on the Xabre600.  That means there is no HSR support, at least in this OpenGL application.

So the Xabre600 really CAN beat up on the TI4200 sometimes.  The megapixel fillrate is closer, but the Xabre beats the TI4200 by nearly 200.  And when it comes to pushing texels in this test, the Xabre holds a huge 700 megatexel/sec advantage!  It apparently DOES have the possibility and capability for some good performance; the question is, why hasn't it shown up in actual FPS game performance?  Maybe the T&L unit holds the answer: 

Yes, it does; It just can't hold up against the TI4200 T&L unit all the time. Though it wins out in pure transform operations, once you start adding lighting, it begins to slips behind.  This also explains the weakness of the vertex shaders, since the T&L unit is supposed to boost that as well. Now, another thing that might be affecting the Xabre's real world performance is memory bus efficiency, so we'll have a look at that too:

This result has nothing to do with speed, and everything to do with bus architecture.  The TI4200 uses a 4 channel memory controller, and therefore simply won't care if there's one texture or 4 pumping through; it's got a channel for each one.

The drop in the Xabre600's performance in this test results from having only two channels to work with; sending only 2 textures at a time and literally halving performance. Even though the Xabre carries faster RAM than the TI4200, the advanced NVIDIA controller more than makes up for the speed difference.  Between the T&L unit and the memory controller, these parts are testing out substandard to the TI4200 class of cards, and this is what's limiting the performance of the card.

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