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Old Sep 26, 2006, 10:03 AM   #1
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Ratchet
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Videocard Rage3D PNY Verto GeForce 7900 GS Review

We've just published our review of PNY Technologies Verto GeForce 7900 GS graphics card. Here's a snip:
The card has 256MB of Hynix GDDR3 memory (HY5RS573225AFP-14) rated for 1.4ns or 700MHz (1.4GHz). Compared to the reference 7900 GS from NVIDIA the memory modules are rotated 90 degrees, but are the same make/model and remain in the same position arrayed around the G71 GPU in pairs of two. Like the reference 7900 GS, all the modules are on the front-side of the card leaving the back of the card relatively bare.

Rage3D PNY Verto GeForce 7900 GS Review
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 10:24 AM   #2
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If you disable optimizations on one vendors product you should do the same thing with other vendors product too. Other than that it was a great review!
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 10:27 AM   #3
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NVIDIA's High Quality mode is about equal to ATI's default mode, IQ wise.
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 10:37 AM   #4
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ATI Technologies

Quote:
Originally Posted by aop View Post
If you disable optimizations on one vendors product you should do the same thing with other vendors product too. Other than that it was a great review!
Bro. Like Ratchet said (and he was not the first or the last), nVidia MUST be put on HQ mode to remove the Texture Filter sacrafices to reduce the Shimmer and moire in most games. And that is the setting that is generally equal to ATI.

RAGE3D is not the only site. Firing Squad also tests thier cards in HQ mode because they recognise that as well.

That being said though. Looks to be a very good part.

C.
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 10:54 AM   #5
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This was a fantastic review as usual so I won't go into that.

Compared to the right cards which is nice.

I only take a very minor exception to one thing...

Where it is stated as beating it's "competitor" (the X1800GTO). This is kind of a grey area IMO. While I understand that pricing has been all over the place last few months so I really cannot blame you...

X1900GT is $199 for Sapphire and HIS and it out performs the 7900GS. The price DID climb to $220 give or take for a few weeks but over the last 8 weeks or so it has been $199. Even the higher priced ones are in the $220 range
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...ATT=14-102-022

I see that the X1800GTO is the same price in many places in the US as the X1900GT. I just don't get it. It is and has been overpriced since it's release (x1800GTO) as far as I can tell. It should go away.

Even here in Canada in my own city, the X1900GT ($269) is only $20 more than the X1800GTO ($249). The 1800GTO are CLEARLY not the same catagory. The X1800GTO sits in the 7600GT performance braket I thought. Quite over priced IMO. The 7900GS ($269) is the same price as the X1900GT.
http://www.memoryexpress.com/index.p..._menu=216&SID=

More accurately I would have to say the $200 7900GS is a decent card but is beaten by the $200 X1900GT. But it does beat the overpriced $200 X1800GTO which should really be $175 or less to even be considered a good value.

Otherwise. Great review!

C.
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Last edited by cvearl : Sep 26, 2006 at 10:58 AM.
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 11:52 AM   #6
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Much better review than before, I like the way this was set up.
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 12:19 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cvearl View Post
Bro. Like Ratchet said (and he was not the first or the last), nVidia MUST be put on HQ mode to remove the Texture Filter sacrafices to reduce the Shimmer and moire in most games. And that is the setting that is generally equal to ATI.

RAGE3D is not the only site. Firing Squad also tests thier cards in HQ mode because they recognise that as well.

That being said though. Looks to be a very good part.

C.
If you look at the FiringSquad IQ article they say that NVIDIAs AF actually renders textures sharp further away than ATIs and they have screenies of that on their site too. Shimmering is problem in some games but not in all so why disable optimizations in all games? Why not disable ATIs AF and Trilinear filtering optimizations too?

I think that reviewers should either leave IQ settings default or disable optimizations on both vendors products to make the review fair.

To this day Rage3D articles have been my among my favourites in terms of how they review their products but now it's kinda hard to understand why disable only one vendors optimizations.

Oh and X1800GTO is a product that won't be around much longer. At least here in Finland X1900GT and GF7900GS are cheaper than X1800GTO and the avaibility of X1800GTO is poor (or non-existant).

And what comes to the card reviewed:
I wouldn't buy it. Why? Because it's not reference design (seems to cause SLI problems with reference cards). One of the strong points of reference GF7900GS is that it's short and fits easily to almost all cases. PNY 7900GS is longer. It doesn't seem to work well in SLI with reference design cards (over 90% of 7900GS cards on market) and it's a big minus for the product. I wouldn't be too surprised if it wouldn't be as relieable as reference design.

Anyways, very nice review except the one sided optimization disabling! Lot's of good pictures, the results were easy to read and the final verdict was pretty good! I like the Rage3D review layout, it makes reading reviews much easier.
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 12:51 PM   #8
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It renders sharp further away because the blending is less between mipmap levels on NVIDIA cards. It's the same way bilinear renders sharper up to a point but then abruptly blurs as the mipmap changes. It does not mean it's better, it means there is simply less blending which is bad. You want smooth nicely blended transitions so you don't see the mipmap boundary as you play a game. Screenshots are not a good way to demonstrate AF quality because it's difficult to tell where this boundary transition is in still shots. When you are in-game, you can clearly see the boundary with NVIDIA's default Quality setting. FS dropped the ball in that section of their IQ article.

Check out this app I made for the Multi-GPU World Tour: http://www.rage3d.com/articles/mgpuw...ur_p8/demi.php
If you compare NVIDIA's default 16x AF filtering to their 16x HQ filtering, you can see that the transition between colors is very short with the default mode and smooth with the HQ mode, which is also very similar to ATI's default. This is what you want, and serves to demonstrate why we now use HQ for all our NVIDIA tests.

ATI's optimizations are not as sever as NVIDIA's and certainly not as noticeable. With NVIDIA's set to High Quality it is my opinion that both cards then render very similar scenes, therefore it is a fair comparison. It's pretty much as simple as that. Even NVIDIA agrees that comparing cards this way is fair.

X1900 GT won't be around much longer either, at least not in the form it was reviewed in this article. But you work with what you have at the time.
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 12:53 PM   #9
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Those Quake 4 results might be a bit off. Here's an example from Vr-Zone:
http://sg.vr-zone.com/?i=3946&s=5

They have also optimizations disabled and have same driver version as you but get about 2 times the fps you get.

Last edited by aop : Sep 26, 2006 at 12:55 PM.
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 12:53 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AluminumHaste View Post
Much better review than before, I like the way this was set up.
before what?
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 01:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aop View Post
Those Quake 4 results might be a bit off. Here's an example from Vr-Zone:
http://sg.vr-zone.com/?i=3946&s=5

They have also optimizations disabled and have same driver version as you but get about 2 times the fps you get.
My results caused concern for me too, they seem much lower than what they should have. However, I ran the tests over and over again, verifying my results and settings each time. Frankly I got sick of trying to get the results I expected out of the benchmark and went with the results it gave me.

And VR-Zone didn't use "High Quality" in the drivers, they used High-Quality in Quake 4. Their results also can't be compared to mine simply because we used different timedemos.
Quote:
Tests ran on the NVIDIA Cards were left at default settings except when AF was used, and that was set at 16xAF:
http://sg.vr-zone.com/?i=3946&s=3
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 01:00 PM   #12
cvearl
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ATI Technologies

Quote:
Originally Posted by aop View Post
If you look at the FiringSquad IQ article they say that NVIDIAs AF actually renders textures sharp further away than ATIs and they have screenies of that on their site too. Shimmering is problem in some games but not in all so why disable optimizations in all games? Why not disable ATIs AF and Trilinear filtering optimizations too?
I totally agree with what you are saying here. I have read that and I have no quams about thier findings. But using HQ mode in the forceware drivers to compare performance with ATI or another nVidia card is a separate issue.

As outlined in the article you meantion, when pushed to thier MAXIMUM multiplied AF settings like 16xAF Ultra Filtering Quality, Firingsquad felt that nVidia forceware was CAPABLE of slightly higher AF in the distance when you ENABLE those ULTRA HIGH QUALITY and high multiplier modes in both products and compare them.

However, that article has nothing to do with benchmarking in the context of "WHY or WHY NOT" enable High Quality Mode in the Forceware driver for performance testing versus ATI. This is about the "default texture filtering quality settings" when you benchmark ANY cards on an even playing field.

The best I can do to explain it is this...

The two "optimizations" the default Quality mode of the Forceware driver it enables (Trilinear and Ansio Filtering quality in exchange for higher framerates) are not bad. However, when comparing two products, you must enable HQ mode in forceware so both the ATI product and nVidia product are displaying nearly identical quality renders in the textures during benchmarking so that both cards are doing more or less an equal ammount of work. With just the default Quality mode, nVidias card is doing LESS work than the ATI card in the filtering. Hell even comparing 2 nVidia cards. You would not leave one in Q mode and the other in HQ mode for the test. The board parter that was tested in HQ mode would be pissed. Why do it when comparing to ATI? Firingsquad, HardOCP and RAGE understand this issue and can explain it much better than I.

http://enthusiast.hardocp.com/articl...VudGh1c2lhc3Q=
Scroll down the page to nearly the end to "SHIMMERING OH MY!"
http://www.firingsquad.com/news/news...?searchid=9402
They basically reference and agree with the above article.
http://episteme.arstechnica.com/grou...m/999005329731
I always found this one interresting.
http://www.3dcenter.org/artikel/g70_...n/index2_e.php
A german article traslated to English pointed out the same thing. If you ask me, the shimmering that was in HQ mode was a fast one that did not get by people so nVidia ramped up the quality in HQ mode after much protest and then said it was a bug in the current driver for the G7's Hahahaha. Whatever

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Last edited by cvearl : Sep 26, 2006 at 01:25 PM.
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 01:40 PM   #13
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ATI Technologies

Quote:
Originally Posted by aop View Post
Those Quake 4 results might be a bit off. Here's an example from Vr-Zone:
http://sg.vr-zone.com/?i=3946&s=5

They have also optimizations disabled and have same driver version as you but get about 2 times the fps you get.
Um wow. Worst review ever. ***EDIT*** ----> Ok not the worst. Just think they are a little misguided on the whole ATI Mipmap slider thing versus upping the Filter Quality on Forceware. But thier heart was in the right place.

QUOTE...

""To pit the ATi cards on a fairer ground, settings were left at default as well except the MipMap Detail, which was tuned down one notch to Quality settings to match the image quality setting with the NVIDIA Cards.""

Uh ya. I own ATI and nVidia and can tell you they would have to drop more than that to produce the type of shimmer I get in my games with nVidias quality mode. Far Cry, Richard Burns Rally, GUN, the list goes on and on. Even in HQ mode. Shimmer. I still have not met ANYONE that plays in the default Quality mode on thier nVidia card. Well perhaps you are the first I have known. But VR-ZONE just lost ALL credability with me now. Sheesh. Dopr ATI's sliders down to match quality with nVidia? That does not work that way. Hahahaha. I don't get the same level of degradation just simply dropping the MipMap detail slider one notch on my ATI. Period.

Damn dood. If I could drop to that Q mode on nVidia and still enjoy the IQ I and everyone else deserve, don't you think I would??? I WOULD! Do you not think so? But alas. I cannot. Not unless I want shimmer.

C.
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Last edited by cvearl : Sep 26, 2006 at 06:42 PM.
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 01:54 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cvearl View Post
Um wow. Worst review ever.

QUOTE...

""To pit the ATi cards on a fairer ground, settings were left at default as well except the MipMap Detail, which was tuned down one notch to Quality settings to match the image quality setting with the NVIDIA Cards.""

Uh ya. I own ATI and nVidia and can tell you they would have to drop more than that to produce the type of shimmer I get in my games with nVidias quality mode. Far Cry, Richard Burns Rally, GUN, the list goes on and on. Even in HQ mode. Shimmer. I still have not met ANYONE that plays in the default Quality mode on thier nVidia card. Well perhaps you are the first I have known. But VR-ZONE just lost ALL credability with me now. Sheesh. Dopr ATI's sliders down to match quality with nVidia? That does not work that way. Hahahaha. I don't get the same level of degradation just simply dropping the MipMap detail slider one notch on my ATI. Period.

Damn dood. If I could drop to that Q mode on nVidia and still enjoy the IQ I and everyone else deserve, don't you think I would??? I WOULD! Do you not think so? But alas. I cannot. Not unless I want shimmer.

C.
The screenshot from drivers in that review shows optimizations disabled and they actually lowered ATIs IQ settings...
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 02:33 PM   #15
cvearl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aop View Post
The screenshot from drivers in that review shows optimizations disabled and they actually lowered ATIs IQ settings...
Ya I know. I said I have lowerd that MipMap on my own ATI cards in the past and never get Shimmering to the degree I have it on nVidia in Quality mode.

I understand what they are trying to do. But they would be wrong as far as I can tell visually.

ATI's MipMap slider does not effect the same things as the default forcewares Quality Mode's sacrafices to Texture Filtering to the best of my knowledge. **EDIT** as far as my eyes tell me that is. I am not a driver engineer or have personal secret knowledge of that data.

But whatever. I only know what my eyes tell me. I have an ATI X800XL and 7800GT side by side and used to look at different settings when I first got my 7800GT. I saw shimmering and did not understand why as I was new to using forceware. I referenced back to my X800XL (like I can do today) to make sure I was not out to lunch. I was not.

Thankfully some helpful people explained what I needed to do to get the IQ (remove the shimmer as best as you can) I was used to seeing on my ATI cards. It was unanamous... Enable HQ mode. This was the opinion of nVidia and ATI fans alike. Buddy. I'm not makin this **** up.

I love my 7800GT. In HQ mode, it appears to literrally match my 800XL's default mode.

Ratchets and Firingsquads methods areas accurate as you can get IMO.

C.
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Last edited by cvearl : Sep 26, 2006 at 06:44 PM.
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Old Sep 26, 2006, 06:35 PM   #16
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ATI Technologies

Quote:
Originally Posted by aop View Post
Those Quake 4 results might be a bit off. Here's an example from Vr-Zone:
http://sg.vr-zone.com/?i=3946&s=5

have same driver version as you but get about 2 times the fps you get.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ratchet View Post
My results caused concern for me too, they seem much lower than what they should have. However, I ran the tests over and over again, verifying my results and settings each time. Frankly I got sick of trying to get the results I expected out of the benchmark and went with the results it gave me.

And VR-Zone didn't use "High Quality" in the drivers, they used High-Quality in Quake 4. Their results also can't be compared to mine simply because we used different timedemos.
http://sg.vr-zone.com/?i=3946&s=3
I agree on the Timedemo thing but at the same time, there seems to have been a problem with the 7900GS numbers. aop is right there. Not sure what woulda caused that. I woulda expected the 7900GS to go just a touch faster than the 1900GT in Q4. Of course that is how DOOM3 engines are with these cards.





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Last edited by cvearl : Sep 26, 2006 at 06:46 PM.
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