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02 March 2008

Radeon HD 3870X2 vs GeForce 8800 Ultra Benchmark

Battle for the performance crown:
Radeon HD 3870 X2 vs GeForce 8800 Ultra

Since the beginning of the DirectX 10 era, Nvidia has been very successful with it's 8800 series. The much delayed Radeon HD 2900XT could do little about it. Then, with the launch of RV670 based HD 3870 and HD 3850, ATI manage to put up a fight against the 8800GT. In an attempt to regain the performance crown, ATI came up with R680, putting two RV670 cores onto a single PCB, linked via Crossfire. In this extract of the original review (in chinese), we shall see whether this solution can win the performance crown back for AMD.


The prices are in China Yuan
In my opinion, I think the 8800GTS 512 should be included as one of the contestants.

The Cards:

Both PCBs measure 26.7cm.

Power wise, HD 3870 X2 uses a 6pin + 8pin solution;
while the 8800 Ultra opted for a dual 6-pin input.

Since most PSUs are located at the top of the casing, the 8800 Ultra's design would provide better cable management.

The "Golden Fingers" are reserved for multi-GPU/card solution.

The copper + aluminum heatsinks for each of the graphics core.

Test System:

CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad Q6700 @ 3Ghz (333x9)
Motherboard: Asus Maximus Formula X38 0907
Memory: GEIL Plus DDR2-800 @ 4-4-4-10 1T
Storage: WD Caviar WD3200YS
PSU: Zippy GSM-6600P(G1) 600W
Monitor: Dell 2407WFP

O/S: Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate 32bit SP1

  • Intel INF Update Utility
  • ATI Catalyst 8.2
  • Forceware 174.12 Beta

Catalyst 8.2 vs 8.1:

(Click to enlarge)

The only notable difference is with high resolution + 4xAA in Company of Heroes.
The rest falls within the margin of error.

Benchmark Result:

(Click to enlarge)

From the figures, it's pretty clear that the Radeon HD 3870 X2 outperforms the Ultra in 3DMark06, with a lead of almost 50%! Also, it performs very well in QuakeWars, Half-Life 2 and Call of Duty 4.

The card needs better driver optimization for both Crysis and World in Conflict. Also notice that performance drastically decreased with AA switched on.

Power Consumption:

Thanks to the PowerPlay technology, the HD 3870 X2 managed to save around 24W in idle.
But on load, the dual core consumes 16W over the Ultra.

With the help of Rivatuner, we can see PowerPlay @ work.
It manages to save power by automatically lowering the core voltage and clocks during 2D mode.


What others read:


martin raul sosa sanchez said...

i like the capacity of the 3870x2 compaired with a 8800 ultra wicht is more expensive

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