Date: Wednesday, September 30, 2009
While it might be a bit "overkill," we use the i7 920 at 3.6GHz processor in an attempt to keep from putting our evaluation into a position of being CPU limited. Obviously, we make every effort to not use CPU limited games for video card evaluations, but the i7 920 at 3.6GHz seems to put many peoples’ minds at ease when it comes to that subject.
We have chosen to include the GTX 285 and Radeon HD 5870 as comparison video cards. We are using latest drivers, including 8.66 RC6 as provided by AMD.
A newer version of GPUz was provided by AMD that reveals specifications; you can see that CrossFireX is enabled with two GPUs.
One interesting thing to note, with CrossFireX enabled you have the option to force on 16X MSAA in games that support it. While we did not have time in this evaluation to explore this feature, we will in later evaluations.
We evaluate what each video card configuration can supply us in terms of a playable gaming experience while supplying the best culmination of resolution and "eye candy" graphical settings. We focus on quality and immersion of the gameplay experience rather than how many frames per second the card can get in a canned benchmark or prerecorded timedemo situation that often do not represent real gameplay like you would experience at home. Then we will follow with apples-to-apples testing in with minimum, maximum, and average framerates.