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Reviewed by: Carl Nelson [10.01.02]
Manufactured by: ATI

MSRP: $399.00

 

The Test

We're testing this card against a TI4200 based video card, just for a reference. Here's a breakdown on how these video cards compare: 

Card

GF4TI4200

ATI Radeon 9700 PRO

GPU Speed

225 MHz

325 MHz

RAM Technology

64 MB DDR
(128 bit, Crossbar)

128 MB DDR (256 bit, Crossbar, HyperZ III compression)

RAM Speed (actual)

250 MHz

310 MHz

Bandwidth

8 GB/sec

19.84 GB/sec

Pixel Pipes

4 (64 bit)

8 (96 bit)

Texture Units

2 per pipe

1 per pipe

Textures per pass (not per clock)

8

16

Pixel Shaders

Yes

Yes (Floating point)

Vertex Shaders

Hardware (2 units)

Hardware (4 units)

Multi-Monitor

Yes

Yes

AntiAliasing

4XS

SMOOTHVISION (6X)

Z-Culling

Yes

HyperZ III

DirectX

8

9

MSRP (US$)

$199

$399

Even by the specifications, this should not be a terribly close contest. The Radeon 9700 PRO card out-specs the TI4200 in every way (including price of course).  Of course as we've seen with many video cards, if you're just looking at specs on paper, you can't really be sure WHAT will happen.

Test system:
Pentium 2.2 GHz Northwood
512 MB PC2100 Crucial RAM
Abit BD7 motherboard
Maxtor 40GB 7200 RPM ATA133 HDD

TI4200 - Detonator driver version 30.82
ATI RADEON 9700 Pro - CATALYST Driver version 2.2

DirectX8 - 3DMark2001

As always, we like to kick things off with 3DMark2001. We're going to use it to give us an overall idea of DirectX8 performance, and have a look at fill rates and DX8 shader performance.  All tests were run at default settings, using 1024x768x32 resolution.

 

As you can see, the RADEON leads this test comfortably, especially when it comes to shaders.

Also note the results form the fillrate test though.  Obviously the RADEON wins both, but you can see the results of it's 8x1 pipeline architecture.  The TI4200 has a 4 pipeline architecture with 2 texture units per pipe, and therefore has an advantage in multitexturing, bringing it closer to the RADEON in that test. However in single texturing modes, the RADEON's 8 pixel pipelines give it a supreme advantage over cards with fewer pixel pipelines, whose extra texture units on each pipe sit useless.

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