Hope you enjoyed the internet's most accurately categorized list of top ranked video cards with relative performance ratings, for newcomers and enthusiasts alike!
Somewhere between 500 to 1,000 online video card review articles were studied for the culmination of this data, whew.
For the beginners, keep in mind that all the Radeon 7/6/5xxx and Geforce 6/5/4xx cards can play DX11 games. All of the Radeon 2xxx to 4xxx and Geforce 8xxx to 2xx cards can play DX10 games, but not DX11. As to the Radeons with numbers X19xx or below and the Geforces with numbers 7xxx or below, these cards are limited to DX9.0c.
The overall average performance
of multi-GPU cards from review site benchmarks receive a somewhat modest 15% penalty for having two major impediments: microstuttering that is still not yet fully resolved with the current generation, and multi-GPU scaling that does not work for at least 15% of games out there - actually performing worse than a single-GPU configuration in many cases. Another impediment is that triple buffering cannot be forced as true triple buffering with Alternate Frame Rendering, so if one wishes to play with Vsync enabled, one would experience the fractioning of the frame rates whenever it drops below the monitor refresh rate; however, the lack of true triple buffering does not count as a penalty. (For multi-GPU setups, generally multiply the single card score by 1.55 to 1.6, depending on how new the cards are - it scales a little better with each new generation for newer games, with better driver support.)
The percentages are for comparing cards within the same class (they could be multiplied with the next class by using 1.23 for 23% for example.. anyways), while the patented (just kidding) trademark, GPUpower[sup]TM[/sup] is a linear overall performance scale of a card in an average out of several dozen popular modern PC games released in the last few years that scales normally well without being CPU-bound or dependent on unusual or exclusive features like PhysX or CUDA for example.
EDIT: GPUpower is changed to Voodoopower
[sup]TM[/sup] (just kidding on the TM part again) for the following reason:
That way, homage is paid to the last Voodoo card ever made, the mythical Voodoo 5 6000
, since it has approximately ONE Voodoopower
(GPUpower) unit rating. Actually, it's the closest card to exactly 1 GPUpower that I could think of.
There! We have a unit similar to the horsepower rating for cars, yet much more comprehensive, like how a car would perform on many different racing tracks, put together for an average! A Geforce GTX 580 has 180 Voodoopower--180 times as much power as 3Dfx's last GPU. Also, it has 18 times as much power as a 6800 Ultra, the first DX9.0c flagship card. A Radeon 9700 Pro, the first DX9 card, would have nearly 5 Voodoopower. Radeon 8500, the first DX8.1 card would have just over 2 Voodoopower. Geforce 2 GTS would have about 1.3 Voodoopower, while Geforce 2 Ultra, the last mighty DX7 card, possesses 1.6 of these mysterious units.
is a magical unit captured from the last incarnation of 3DFx's glory--it was the mightiest unit that 3dfx could barely impose on us gamers before taking its Voodoo5 6000 with it to the grave. Word has it that only 150 engineering samples escaped this horrendous fate and that only 30 of them actually worked with slightly tweaked drivers (although with a workable PCI hardware bug yet literally suicidal incompatibility with many motherboards). (L) Loving tribute--for more on the 6000, see: http://www.x86-secret.com/articles/d...0/v56kgb-6.htm
(whoa, yes, there's a serious, eerie disclaimer lurking in the dark corner)-- The ranking list tries to take into account the overall performance in as many games as possible, not just a selected handful of games. The performance under consideration does not include PhsyX. It is just to let you know where your video card would rank in overall performance using a 1080p monitor with at least 8x AF forced from the control panel as the de-facto standard of today. By the way, AA is sometimes automatically enabled if the game pre-configures the settings according to the video card, and is highly recommended even if it means upgrading your video card.
With anything lower than the lowest-ranked card, forget about playing even Bioshock from 5 years ago at 1680x1050 the way the developer intended the game to be played! (The 6800 Ultra that cost $500 7 years ago cannot even handle critical areas of Bioshock on default settings at over 15fps average on today's low-end resolution of 1680x1050)!
Out of nostalgia, here are some of the historical notables: --(Approximated for now - just my own quick guesses):
Radeon X850XT 256MB (DX9) -- 10.9 VP
Radeon X800XT 256MB (DX9) -- 10.4 VP
Radeon X800XT All-In-Wonder 256MB (DX9) -- 10.4 VP
Geforce 6800GT 256MB (DX9.0c) -- 8.8 VP
Geforce 6800 (DX9.0c) -- 7.2 VP
Radeon X800 (DX9) -- 7.2 VP
Geforce 6600GT (DX9.0c) -- 6.3 VP
Radeon 9800 XT (DX9) -- 5.8 VP
Geforce FX 5950 Ultra (DX9) -- 5.5 VP
Radeon 9800 Pro (DX9) -- 5.4 VP
Geforce FX 5900 Ultra (DX9) -- 5.1 VP
Radeon 9700 Pro (DX9) -- 4.9 VP
Geforce FX 5800 Ultra (DX9) -- 4.6 VP
Geforce 4 Ti 4600 (DX8.1) -- 2.9 VP
Geforce 3 Ti 500 (DX 8.0) -- 2.2 VP
Radeon 8500 (DX8.1) -- 2.1 VP
Geforce 3 (DX 8.0) -- 2.0 VP
Geforce 2 Ultra (DX 7.1) -- 1.6 VP
Geforce 2 GTS (DX 7.1) -- 1.3 VP
~~~Voodoo 5 6000 (DX 7.0) -- 1 VP~~~