3DMark Vantage is Futuremark’s latest DX10 benchmark exclusively for Windows Vista. This is truly the next generation 3D benchmark.
We used the default ‘Performance’ setting preset, and the usual 1280×1024 resolution. Detailed benchmark settings can be seen below.
3DMark Vantage is comprised of numerous tests including full scale gaming, CPU and card feature tests. For the purposes of this review, we’ll be focusing on the GPU tests and overall score.
As can be seen, the Palit 9600GT Sonic 1GB takes the cake with a 600 point lead over the reference HD3850. To my surprise, the Palit Super+1GB scored almost 1000 points lower than the reference HD3850. The lower memory bandwidth has definitely bottlenecked the card in 3DMark Vantage.
We see a similar trend in the individual GPU tests with the Super+1GB trailing the reference card by a few frames per second.
A few custom tests were run to see if more agressive antialiasing would paint a different picture. Interestingly, the reference 3850 couldn’t complete the test at 8x MSAA and caused constant freezeups. The Super+1GB didn’t have an issue. It could be a memory capacity limitation that caused this issue at 8x MSAA, but without being able to complete the test, a conclusion can’t be drawn. The 9600GT Sonic 1GB did well across the entire range of AA settings, as did the Super+1GB. Each card exhibited a mere 2-3 FPS delta between 8x MSAA and no antialiasing at all.
Futuremark’s 3DMark 2006 is arguably the most popular 3D benchmark of all time. We benchmarked using the default settings, as that is the most widely recognized configuration.
3DMark 2006 provides a pattern similar to what we saw in 3DMark Vantage. The 9600GT Sonic 1GB scores highest at almost 12,000 points, with the reference HD3850 trailing by about 1,500. Again, the reduced memory bandwidth of the Super+1GB has it trailing behind the reference HD3850 by almost 2,500 points.