Next, we turned on more eye candy and ran the Time-demo at the following
We see the performance advantage the extra graphics memory offers more
clearly at this setting. 2 to 5% better performance with the 512Mb card is
visible from the charts but not quite visible through the gaming experience.
This said, we found the game very playable even at thus high a settings at 1280
x 1024, with either cards.
Finally, an all out eye candy test was carried out with these settings:
With this maximum quality setting, we see that the advantage of the 512Mb
card only truly shining at 1920 x 1440. At this resolution, the performance
difference suddenly jumps from 1% to 40%. The 256Mb card is clearly running out
of memory space to store the highly detailed textures. Even though the 512Mb is
clearly much faster than the 256Mb at 1920 x 1440, the difference isn’t enough
to turn a slide show into a smooth running game. At an average of 23.5fps, the
time-demo still runs at a crawling speed.
- From these tests, the 512Mb card is not much better than the 256Mb. The
difference between the 2 cards even with all the eye candy turned on is barely
visible save for the one most intensive setting.
- I would consider the 2 cards to be similarly performing in Half Life 2.
- With our 19″ monitor, we could feel the image quality improve up till
1600 x 1200, 6xAA and 16xAF. The 6xAA helps to eliminate the
texture-shimmering effect most visible in bright environments and the 16xAF
puts so much clarity that the game looks superb.
- Above 1600 x 1200 though, we cannot feel a distinctive difference on
our 19″ monitor.