7950GX2 vs 8800 Series Showdown - Test Setup, Info and 3DMark

Article Index
7950GX2 vs 8800 Series Showdown
The Cards: eVGA 7950GX2 - XFX 8800GTS
The Cards: eVGA 8800GTX
Side by Side by Side
Test Setup, Info and 3DMark
Game Performance and Conclusion
 

Test Setup & Info:

It's no big secret that the 8800 Series needs a fast system in order to perform.  We used an overclocked Core 2 Duo system to feed these cards so that it would eliminate the system bottleneck.  I'm sure that down the road, a Quad Core QX6700 or better will do a better job, but for now we'll use an E6600 clocked up from 2.4GHz to 3.2GHz.  Below is a chart that outlines the system and the settings at which we ran our benchmarks.

Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 CPU
MSI 975X Platinum v.2 PowerUp Edition

2GB kit (2x1GB) Crucial Ballistix PC2-8000 - Crucial
Plextor PX-750A DVDRW - Plextor
Seagate 250GB 7200.10 SATA HDD
eVGA 7950GX2 1024MB Graphics Card - MemoryExpress
Windows XP Pro. with SP2
ForceWare 93.71 - GeForce 7
ForceWare 97.44 - GeForce 8

BCCHardware Testing Information
   
CPU: Intel E6600 Core 2 Duo @ 3.2GHz
   
Motherboard:

MSI 975X Platinum v.2 PowerUp Edition
Stock Clock - 9x 266MHz - Memory DDR2-800 @ 4-4-4-12
OverClock - 9x 356MHz = 3.20GHz - Memory DDR2-892 @ 5-5-5-15

   
Graphics Cards :

eVGA 7950GX2 - Clocked at 500MHz Core - 1200MHz Memory
XFX 8800GTS - Clocked at 500MHz Core - 1200MHz Shader - 1600MHz Memory
eVGA 8800GTX - Clocked at 575MHz Core - 1350MHz Shader - 1800MHz Memory

   
3DMark 2003:

Low Quality - Default 3DMark 2003 Benchmark - No AA or AF
Med. Quality - 1280x1024 - 4x AA - 8x AF
High Quality - 1600x1200 - 4x AA - 16x AF

   
3DMark 2005: Low Quality - Default 3DMark 2005 Benchmark - No AA or AF
Med. Quality - 1280x1024 - 4x AA - 8x AF
High Quality - 1600x1200 - 4x AA - 16x AF
   
3DMark 2006:

Low Quality - Default 3DMark 2006 Benchmark - No AA or AF
Med. Quality - 1280x1024 - 4x AA - 8x AF
High Quality - 1600x1200 - 4x AA - 16x AF**
**7950GX2 Cannot run AA with 3DMark06 HDR test

   
F.E.A.R.

Low Quality - 1024x768, No AA, Medium Settings, Trilinear Filtering, Medium Effects, No Soft Shadows.
Medium Quality - 1280x960 - 4x AA, High Settings, 8x AF, Max Effects, No Soft Shadows.
HighQuality - 1600x1200 - 8x AA, Max Settings, Max Effects, Soft Shadows

   
G.R.A.W: Low Quality - 1024x768, No AA, Low/Medium Settings, Trilinear Filtering.
Medium Quality - 1280x960 - 4x AA, Medium/High Settings, 8x AF
HighQuality - 1600x1200 - 8x AA, Max Settings.
   
Oblivion: Low Quality - 1024x768, No Screen Effects, No Distant Trees - All Medium.
Medium Quality - 1280x960 - Bloom, All Distant - All High.
HighQuality - 1600x1200 - HDR, All Distant - All Ultra.
   
NFS:Carbon: Low Quality - 1024x768, Medium Detail, Bilinear Filtering.
Medium Quality - 1280x960 - High Detail, Trilinear Filtering.
HighQuality - 1600x1200 - Max Detail, Ansiotrophic Filtering.

Due to time restrictions we weren't able to overclock the graphics cards and retest with these scores.  Once Vista launches, we may be able to revisit this article with DX10 data and we will cover overclocking performance at that time.  All results below are with stock graphics clocks and with our CPU overclocked to eliminate system bottlenecks.


3DMark Series:

We start things off with the classic 3DMark Series of benchmarks to see how 3DMark stacks up on these cards.  We don't have any DX10 benchmarks available so we thought we'd get old school and go back and start with 3DMark 2003.  It is interesting to see that the 7950GX2 actually beats the 8800 Series of graphics card at Default Settings.  We've included three graphs below that show how they perform at default settings, high quality and maximum quality.

3DMark Standard
Click Chart for Full-Sized Image

3DMark High
Click Chart for Full-Sized Image 

 

3DMark Max
Click Chart for Full-Sized Image

On the last page, we'll take a look at some actual game play results.