Test System Setup
Processor(s): Intel i7 920 @ 3.8GHz (190MHz x 20)
Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P (Supplied by Noctua)
Motherboard(s): GIGABYTE EX58-UD5 (Supplied by GIGABYTE)
Memory: 3 X 2GB OCZ Technology PC-12800 DDR-3 8-8-8-24 (OCZ3G1600LV6GK)
Hard Disk(s): Western Digital 300GB Velicorapter (Supplied by Western Digital)
Operating System: Windows XP Professional SP2, Windows Vista SP1 64-Bit
Drivers: Catalyst 8.12, Forceware 180.47, Forceware 180.48, Forceware 181.20, Forceware 185.20
We were fortunate to have the GTX 295 with us for a little while. With no official driver from NVIDIA, we thought we would take the time to test the card with the driver that came on the CD which was the ForceWare 180.48 driver. A few days later NVIDIA let us know that an updated driver was coming. While I was sitting around twiddling my thumbs waiting for it, word of the leaked 185.20 driver came out; figuring that was probably the driver we were going to get later in the day, we tested that one.
Later that afternoon when three quarters of the testing was done, NVIDIA finally emailed us letting us know that the 181.20 driver was available to download, clearly different to the 185.20 we tried.
So what we've done today is test the GTX 295 on all three driver sets. The results are quite interesting and when reading other reviews around the web, make sure you take note of the driver that is being used. With that said, we've also compared the card to the previous NVIDIA top dog, the GTX 280 along with the top two ATI cards, the HD 4870 and the card that currently holds the performance crown (or does it?), the HD 4870 X2.
Version and / or Patch Used: 1.0.1
Developer Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com
Product Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com/products/3dmarkvantage/
3DMark Vantage is the new industry standard PC gaming performance benchmark from Futuremark, newly designed for Windows Vista and DirectX10. It includes two new graphics tests, two new CPU tests, several new feature tests, and support for the latest hardware.
3DMark Vantage is based on a completely new rendering engine, developed specifically to take full advantage of DirectX10, the new graphics API from Microsoft.
Straight away we can see the GTX 295 offers some serious power. We can also see that between the drivers there isn't a whole lot of difference.