Originally posted by: Rand
according to the roundup at aces hardware, the plain geforce beats the firegl and even some older wildcat boards do.
the firegl is just a radeon 8500 with different drivers just like the quadro 4 is just a geforce 4 . hopefully the firegl's based on the 9700 are good. now the firegl 2 is not a radeon based board but a true 3d llabs product.
While I have nothing but the utmost respect for AcesHardware their last Pro3D roundup left MUCH to be desired. We've seen for nearly 6 months in tests from many sites that the FireGL 8700/8800 performs relatively poorly in the Spec ViewPerf synthetic subtests that made up the bulk of AcesHardware's testing suite, it's not exctly unknown that Spec ViewPerf tends to equate poorly to real world application performance however.... even the subtests drawn from the actual applications don't reflect very well upon the real applications performance.
In all Aces results they've totalled wireframe, shading, texture + shading, and shading + vertex coloring results together, and give us little indication of relative performance in each individual field. They make little differentiation between tests that use smooth or flat gourad shading versus those that use more complicated forms of shading such as smooth blinn shading or phong shading.
I could go on but one needs only look through Ace's archives to see the multitudes of people that were less then impressed with Ace's last Professional rendering review.
I should state I mean no disrespect towards Aces, indeed I put Johan De Gelas (the author of the piece) on a level only slightly below Hans de Vries.
In real world application performance the FireGL 8800 tends to often outperform the Quadro 4 900XGL in most applications.
It is certainly faster in complex shading tests, and performs extremely well in rendering 5+ light sources, as a result it performs very well in 3D-animation apps and holds its own in most CAD tests.
It's weaker in both raw fillrate and basic texturing, and wireframe performance leaves a bit to be desired.
The Quadro4 series lacks a bit in pure polygon throughput, but otherwise holds up well. It's sub-pixel accuracy is also a string point in it's price range, comparing well with 3DLabs high end WildCat III series.
It's texturing fillrate is extremely impressive and is bar none the best cards available if you want textured previews of 3D scenes in a window, this fact has always made the Quadro4 a popular board for 3DSM due to it's easily coping with rendering textured scenes in real time in a window, while allowing the artist to continue adjusting the scene in the main application view area.
The traditional flaw with the Quadro series has been driver support, and relatively lagging period of time before attaining ISV certified drivers.
now the firegl 2 is not a radeon based board but a true 3d llabs product.
The FireGL 2-4 are not 3DLabs products, the FireGL 2 was originally released by SonicBlue and based upon gomery and raster engines powered by IBM hardware.