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    Sapphire Radeon 9800 Pro Atlantis 256-MB Review
    By Vince Freeman :  July 29, 2003

    Performance

    The Sapphire Radeon 9800 Pro 256-MB card is the top-rated model in the ATI line, and as such, needs a high-end platform to make real-world comparisons. Our reference system fits the bill, and with a Pentium 4-3.0C processor, an i875P AGP 8X motherboard and 2x256-MB of DDR400, we've assembled a pretty hot machine. This is kind of power is not only useful for relative benchmarking, but it gives the high-end video cards some serious headroom and ensures that the platform is not the limiting factor.

    We have finally managed to allocate a few GeForce FX 5900 Ultra cards, but comparison testing will have to wait for the full product review. For now, we're still presenting an ATI-line of competition for the Sapphire Radeon 9800 Pro 256-MB, including Radeon 9800 Pro (128-MB), Radeon 9700 Pro, Radeon 9500 Pro and Radeon 9600 Pro boards. Our operating system is Windows XP Pro SP1 with DirectX 9a, and all video cards have been tested with AGP 8X and Fast Writes enabled.

    Our game benchmark selection includes standard tests like Quake 3: Arena, 3DMark 2001SE Pro, Jedi Knight II and Return to Castle Wolfenstein, as well as some newer benchmarks such as 3DMark 2003 and Unreal Tournament 2003. All benchmark testing has been performed using standard 32-bit settings, along with some more rigorous anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering modes later on.

    * Please note that unless otherwise stated, all performance graph results equate to the standard "higher is better" format.

    Test System

    General Settings:
    Desktop Resolution: 1024x768
    Color Depth: 32-bit
    V-Sync: Disabled

    Intel 875PE Test Platform
    Processors: Pentium 4-3.0C
    Memory: 2 x 256-MB Kingmax DDR400 DIMM
    Motherboard: ASUS P4C800 Deluxe
    Motherboard chip set: Intel 875P
    ATI reference drivers: Catalyst 3.5
    Hard-Drive: Western Digital 40-GB 7200 RPM
    CD/DVD: LG 16X DVD-ROM
    Power Supply: Sparkle 400 Watt
    Operating System: Windows XP Pro SP1

    Video Cards:
    Sapphire Radeon 9800 Pro 256-MB
    ATI Radeon 9800 Pro 128-MB
    ATI Radeon 9700 Pro
    ATI Radeon 9600 Pro
    Sapphire Radeon 9500 Atlantis Pro 128-MB

    Quake III Arena Test Specifics
    Version: 1.30 (retail)
    V-Sync: Disabled
    Sound Disabled
    High Quality Defaults

    Return to Castle Wolfenstein Specifics:
    Version 1.0
    High Quality Defaults
    Checkpoint MP demo

    Serious Sam: The Second Encounter Specifics:
    Version 1.05
    Elephant Atrium demo

    Jedi Knight II Specifics:
    Version 1.04
    jk2ffa demo

    3DMark 2001SE Pro Specifics:
    Version 1.0 patched

    3DMark 2003 Specifics:
    Version 1.0


    Page 1 The Sapphire Radeon 9800 Pro Atlantis 256-MB Card
  • Page 2 Performance and Test System
    Page 3 Quake 3, Serious Sam 2 & RtCW Performance
    Page 4 Jedi Knight II, Comanche 4 & UT 2003 Performance
    Page 5 Code Creatures and 3DMark 2001SE/2003 Performance
    Page 6 Anti-aliasing, Anisotropic Filtering and Overclocking
    Page 7 Benchmark Analysis, Value and Conclusion

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