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ATi Rage Fury MAXX Videocard Review

ATi Rage Fury MAXX Videocard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: Less than top notch performance in the 3D gaming arena is what caused many gaming enthusiasts to shy away from ATi. Though ATi had the potential for becoming the 3D market leader, delays plagued the path of the Rage 128 chip on the way to market shelves. And in this industry, time is as valuable as money. So rather than being recognized as a leader in the graphics industry, OEM sales for low priced PC's and laptop's were their bread and butter.
 70% Rating:   
Filed under: Video Cards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: ATI May 26 2000   P. Masrani  
Home > Reviews > Video Cards > ATI Rage Fury MAXX

Fillrate and Memory Bandwidth



By itself, the Rage 128 Pro chip is capable of pumping out data at a rate of 125MHz for a total fill rate of 250 Mpixels/sec. Teamed with yet another similar chip, and you have a product that is theoretically capable of outperforming Nvidia's Geforce256 GPU which is rated at a lower 480 Mpixels/sec.

With the SDRAM running at 143MHz and pushing data through a 128-bit pipeline, you have a total memory bandwidth of nearly 2.3GB/sec.... for each processor! Thus, our total available memory bandwidth available on the Rage Fury MAXX is a brute 4.6GB/sec! So what does all this mean? When using 3D applications at high resolutions and colour depth, you then require a lot more memory per frame.

If your card can push that data at a fast enough rate, you should not experience any significant slowdowns. If your total memory bandwidth is low, it is your FPS rate which will begin to suffer. Something especially noticeable at resolutions of 1280x1024 and beyond...

Performance

Here we finally come down to the fundamental question. With all the sheer theoretical power and the huge amount of texture space, how does the Rage Fury MAXX stand up against competition of its time? We are going to compare the MAXX with the Asus V6800 Deluxe as well as the 3dfx Voodoo3 3000 AGP. Here is the summary of the test bed.

Test Bed Hardware

- Pentium III 500 Slot 1 O/C'ed to 560MHz (112x5)
- Celeron 400 with Soltek SL-02A++ Converter Card
- Soltek SL-67KV Mainboard
- 128MB PC-100 SDRAM
- Viewsonic E653 Monitor
- ATi Rage Fury MAXX
- Asus V6800 Deluxe
- 3dfx Voodoo3 3000 AGP

For each graphics card tested, the latest drivers were used. In case of the Rage Fury MAXX, the newest "unsupported" drivers were downloaded from the ATi website. Under Quake 3, all default settings in Normal and High Quality were used with the exception of a change in resolution. For the Direct3D (Unreal Tournament) aspect of testing, our own "bloodlust.dem" was used to simulate an extremely taxing scenario on any video card.

3DMark 2000

First up on the tests comes in the most recent addition from Mad Onion. Though purely a synthetic benchmark and does not represent real world performance to much extent. But because of the wide array of tests that it does perform, 3DMark 2000 should give a good indication of the overall performance of the card when compared to others.

By looking at the scores, it is quite evident that the Rage Fury MAXX requires pretty strong hardware in order to keep it performing well. The Celeron 400 CPUs will not do any justice here. However, also keep in mind that 3DMark 2000 does provide support for hardware T&L, something which is not exhibited in the Rage Fury MAXX but is present in the Asus V6800 Deluxe. This is another reason you see such a wide gap at 400MHz.

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Contents of Article: ATI Rage Fury MAXX
 Pg 1.  ATi Rage Fury MAXX Videocard Review
 Pg 2.  AFR, SLI, huh?
 Pg 3.  — Fillrate and Memory Bandwidth
 Pg 4.  Quake III Arena
 Pg 5.  Unreal Tournament
 Pg 6.  DVD and Conclusion

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