ATI RADEON 8500LE Review
By Vince Freeman :
March 11, 2002
Quake 3 Performance
Quake 3 remains the de facto 3D game benchmark here at SE, and due to its highly repeatable results, it is still one of the best methods of comparing different video cards. In this test suite we match up the ATI Radeon 8550LE and 8500 against the two NVIDIA GeForce3 cards using version 1.30 and the included demo Four. These were run with the default Normal (16-bit) and High Quality settings, as well as ramping up the detail levels to maximum in our special MAX setting.
In Quake 3 Normal testing, both the Radeon cards fall behind the GeForce3 in the lower resolutions, and while both ATI cards make up ground at 1024x768 and above, the GeForce3 Ti 500 is still the fastest board. These results are mirrored in both High Quality and MAX settings as well, as the Radeon 8500LE surpasses the GeForce3 Ti 200, but can't match the faster Ti 500. In terms of an ATI comparison, both the Radeon 8500LE and 8500 post eerily similar benchmark scores, with only slight differences between resolutions and detail levels.
Serious Sam: Second Encounter Performance
Serious Sam: The Second Encounter is a great sequel in the popular franchise and the benchmark portion is even better than the original. This new game not only puts the pressure on new 3D cards (especially at higher resolutions) but provides some excellent in-game demos in wide open spaces with tons of enemies. For our specific tests, we have used the in-game Elephant demo to determine potential framerates, using both 16 and 32-bit modes.
The initial testing starts looking like the previous Quake3 scores, with both GeForce3 boards taking a big lead at the lower resolutions. ATI starts to eat into the margin at 1024x768, and then surprisingly takes a slight lead at 1600x1200. The framerate difference between the two ATI cards and the GeForce3 Ti 200 become quite apparent at 1600x1200 as well. Both Radeon 8500SE and 8500 cards post similar scores once again, with only minute differences present between the two.