F.E.A.R. Performance

F.E.A.R. has a built in test that we make use of in this performance analysis. This test flies through some action as people shoot each other and things blow up. F.E.A.R. is very heavy on the graphics, and we enable most of the high end settings for our test.

During our testing of F.E.A.R., we noted that the "soft shadows" don't really look soft. They jumped out at us as multiple transparent shadows layered on top of each other and jittered to appear soft. Unfortunately, this costs a lot in performance and not nearly enough shadows are used to make this look realistic. Thus, we disable soft shadows in our test even though it's one of the large performance drains on the system.

Again we tested with anisotropic filtering at 8x, and all options were on their highest quality (with the exception of soft shadows which was disabled). Frame rates for F.E.A.R. can get pretty low for a first person shooter, but the game does a good job of staying playable down to about 25 fps.


The $400 SLI/CrossFire solutions from NVIDIA and ATI essentially tie each other under F.E.A.R. This does mean that SLI once again scales better than CrossFire, but the X1950 Pro maintains its performance advantage.

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View All Comments

  • Spoelie - Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - link

    It might be a good idea to use omega's drivers, they do not include catalyst control center but instead use ati tray tools OR the old control panel slightly updated. The only downside to this is that omega's are sometimes one or two releases behind the official ones.

    if you're not comfortable with omega's drivers (even though they're rock solid :)) you can always download just the driver from ati and install ati tray tools seperatly. it includes every option you need to change driver settings etc but is a sleek minimalist fast 1mb tool :)
  • JarredWalton - Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - link

    Unfortunately, CCC is required to enable CrossFire. I don't know if Omega gets around this requirement somehow, but the standard ATI control panel drivers do not have the CrossFire checkbox anywhere. Reply
  • Aikouka - Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - link

    The awkward drivers is actually the main reason I steer clear of ATi still. Also, I get a bit annoyed at the company as they only seem to care about their graphics sector and ignore all of their other products. My ATi TV Wonder Pro Remote Control Edition had so many problems over the years that it was barely worth owning. The Remote Control software just crashes randomly still.

    Although, I have yet to try the newest version of the software, because I removed the card from my system and it won't let you install the main software without it.

    So... with my experience, it leaves me a bit wary.

    But I do also have to admit how much I also don't like the newer nVidia control panel, but at least I can go back to the original one with one mouse click :).
  • DerekWilson - Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - link

    Right on. Reply
  • Zaitsev - Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - link

    Typo on page 2, third paragraph.

    "It is hard enough for us to sort things out when parts hit the selves at different speeds..."
  • RamarC - Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - link

    suggestion: replace Q4 and B&W2 with Prey and Company of Heroes Reply
  • DerekWilson - Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - link

    We are planning on doing exactly that starting in early November. Reply
  • spe1491 - Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - link

    Possible typo?


    All in all, the X1950 Pro is the performance leader at the $200 mark. We hardily recommend it...
  • Basilisk - Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - link

    Further clue: try "heartily"; "hardily" means "ruggedly", etc.. Reply
  • Spoelie - Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - link

    After browsing through some other reviews, all which seem to use the Catalyst 6.9 drivers, it occured to me that they all have significantly lower performance for the ATi camp then what anandtech is reporting.

    Most reviews place 7900gs performance well above that of the x1950pro in quake 4. Can anyone explain to me why that is, and the supposed opengl/doom3 optimisations are only being seen by AT and not by sites such as bit-tech, hardocp, the tech report, firing squad, etc. ??

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