Test System Setup
Processor(s): Intel Core 2 Duo E6700 @ 2.66GHz
Motherboard(s): Gigabyte P965-DQ6 (Supplied by Gigabyte)
Memory: 2 X 1GB Kingston PC8000 (Supplied by Kingston)
Hard Disk(s): Seagate 320GB 7200.10 SATA 2
Operating System: Windows XP Professional SP2
Drivers: Modified Catalyst 6.10 for Gemini 2 / Catalyst 6.11 for X1950PRO and DX9c
Our test system was pretty standard and configured without any overclocking. The Gemini 2 was running at its default clock speeds (574MHz core and 689MHz memory) and the X1950PRO was running at its default, too.
It's interesting to note that even though we are using an Intel P965 chipset based motherboard, we won't see any drop in Crossfire performance compared to the more expensive 975X chipset, since we are only working with a single graphics card.
If you were running a couple regular X1650XT cards in Crossfire mode on P965 chipset, you are said to see anywhere up to a 10% drop in performance in 3D performance over 975X since P965 has fewer PCI Express lanes available. The advantage of the GeCube Gemini 2 is that you won't see any degrade in performance since your first PCI-E slot has 16 lanes, which is the same as 975X.
We were going to compare against a regular Radeon X1650XT but we thought we would up the ante and see how the Gemini 2 performs against the higher-end Radeon X1950PRO. In a perfect world, we would have liked to compare against a whole bunch of cards but our testing time was limited and we did the best we could. We didn't have time for overclocking tests or our usual and full range of benchmarks but we managed to run quite a few of our usual tests including some AA and AF testing.
IMPORTANT NOTE - Do keep in mind that although the Gemini 2 which we tested is almost ready, it is NOT a final product and it's still being tweaked along with the drivers for extra performance. Hence, treat the benchmark tests as a preview rather than a normal full review.
Version and / or Patch Used: Build 130
Developer Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com
Product Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com/products/3dmark05/
Buy It Here
3DMark05 is now the second latest version in the popular 3DMark "Gamers Benchmark" series. It includes a complete set of DX9 benchmarks which tests Shader Model 2.0 and above.
For more information on the 3DMark05 benchmark, we recommend you read our preview here.
Here we see the Gemini 2 attaining about a 25% performance lead over the X1950PRO which is a good sign that GeCube's implementation of dual GPU is working effectively. Gemini 2 is about 20% more expensive than X1950PRO - looking good so far!