Half Life 2

Half Life 2 Performance Summary
  at_canals_08 at_coast_05 at_coast_12 at_prison_05 at_c17_12
ATI Radeon X850 XT PE 116.1 134.2 111.3 114 84.6
ATI Radeon X850 XT 112.6 133.6 109.4 109.6 84.4
ATI Radeon X800 XT 104.9 129.2 104 106.6 83
ATI Radeon X800 XL 92.3 121.1 97 90.8 80.2
NVIDIA GeForce 6800 Ultra 95.6 116.4 96.4 91.6 79.7
NVIDIA GeForce 6800GT 85.5 108.8 89.3 80.3 76.2
NVIDIA GeForce 6600GT 58.3 79.4 65.1 55.8 62.1
ATI Radeon X800 66.8 98.1 73.6 65.9 72.3
ATI Radeon X850 Pro 91.1 118.7 93.6 87.7 80.4
ATI Radeon X800 Pro 84.1 113.1 87.7 82 78.3


For our performance graph, we took our five performance tests and averaged the scores. The results here show the top of the line NVIDIA GeForce 6800 Ultra performing on par with the new Radeon X850 Pro and X800 XL parts. The DirectX based, shader heavy game by Valve clearly runs faster on ATI's hardware.

Halflife 2 Performance

These numbers are in contrast to Doom 3 performance, as should be expected by now. The adoption of the Doom 3 and Source engines in other projects will continue to be of major interest over the next few months. One engine gaining broader acceptance among game developers could help tip the field in either ATI or NVIDIA's direction.

ATI Radeon X800 XL Doom 3


View All Comments

  • WSquared - Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - link

    The article says: "Unfortunately, we haven't located any 12-pipe NVIDIA GeForce 6800 PCI Express solutions...

    There's one in the UK here:
    Look for the "OcUK GeForce 6800 GTo 256MB"
    It's a strange 12 pipe card clocked at 350/900. I'm sure it could be down-clocked if required for benchmarks.
  • archcommus87 - Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - link

    Yeah, if frickin' nForce 4 boards with PCI-E would finally come out...

    Man it's taking so long.
  • Avalon - Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - link

    Keep an eye on the x800 XL. That's the interesting card of the bunch. At a $349 suggested MSRP (you know we'll shortly see deals for $300 for the card), this is a great card. It outperforms the x800 and x850 pro, costs less, and runs on a 16 pipeline architecture. If it has room to overclock, some noticeable performance gains should be there. It sounds like an awesome alternative to the 6800GT for those that are $50 short. Reply
  • skunkbuster - Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - link

    why can't ati makde -decent- openGL drivers? they ~still~ suck when it comes to open gl games/software

  • MadAd - Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - link

    Anand, will you or someone at AT sometime soon please either include 1920x1200 in normal reviews, or, could you do a one off set of benchmarks with all the dx9 cards at your disposal, at 1920x1200 please?
  • LoneWolf15 - Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - link

    #6, the Video Processing Unit is for encode AND decode. This is well documented. From NVidia's website:

    "Adaptable Programmable Video Processor

    Video Decoding
    A key element of modern-day video processing, MPEG-2 is the basis for such functions as DVD playback. Through advanced technology functions such as motion compensation and inverse discrete cosine transformation (IDCT), the GeForce 6 Series GPUs handle MPEG-2 decoding very efficiently, offloading the CPU of the heavy lifting involved in video playback. The result is smooth, high-quality video and reduced power usage.

    Another important factor is that the GeForce 6 Series GPUs are completely programmable and can handle formats such as WMV9 and MPEG-4. The NVIDIA motion compensation engine can provide decompression acceleration for a variety of video formats including WMV9, MPEG-4, H.264, and DiVX. As with motion compensation for MPEG-2, the NVIDIA video engine can perform most of the computation-intensive work, leaving the easiest work to the CPU.

    Video Encoding
    The GeForce 6 Series GPUs are also capable of hardware video encode acceleration. Traditionally, video encoding is a difficult and time consuming process. The GeForce 6 Series GPUs include a motion estimation engine. Using state-of-the-art technologies, the motion estimation engine delivers higher-quality video at the same or lower bit rate, as well as lower CPU utilization for improved system performance."
  • Momental - Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - link

    Part of me sees this as a brilliant marketing and test strategy for ATi. Yup. The availability of their high-end cards have been all but non-existent and who's to say this wasn't intentional? Maybe they wanted to throw out some product to see how well it sold and in which flavor (AGP or PCI-e)?

    Now they know and this is why we'll have no problem getting our hands on these "refreshed" cards in the next 6 to 10 weeks, if not sooner.

    I'm suggesting that they merely offered cards like the X800XT PE as a "test drive" to see how well it performed and how quickly it left shelves. My hope is that they don't cripple the X800XL card, which looks to be the "sweet spot" here, because they know it performs better and costs less than the X850Pro!!

    In a short while, we'll all see how their new naming convention makes perfect sense as they cull out the "older" cards and make the newer refreshed ones their "top shelf" vodkas. ;)
  • Noli - Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - link

    The X800 XL gives you 16 pipes for $350 on a 0.11 micron chip. With such a small fan (must be cool?) and low core/mem, *if* it overclocks well it could be a blinder and out-do 6800GT for value just below the top of the range cards. I'll be keen to see how it does. Big if though for the moment... Reply
  • archcommus87 - Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - link

    I couldn't agree more about naming the products! How can they make something so simple so difficult? Maybe someone more in touch with them like Anand themselves could give them a piece of their mind.

    Here's how it should be done. Each new type of card can be a new hundreds series, i.e. 100s, 200s, 300s, etc. Then the specific products can be within there. For example, low end 110, middle 150, high 190. And then if they marginally increase the clocks of the best card, make it the 195. Simple!

    And I couldn't agree more on prices, too. I remember when the top of the line was $300 (never remember it being less than that). Now if you want the best you're talking almost $600. And for the best CPU? Over $1,000. Absurd. I'd never more than:

    $200 for a CPU
    $150 for a motherboard
    $300, MAYBE $350 for a video card
    $150-$200 for memory
    $150 for hard drive
  • bigpow - Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - link

    I'd like to see the 6800 in the comparison Reply

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