ATI Radeon X1600 XT Review
By Gabriel Torres on October 7, 2005


Introduction

Radeon X1600 XT, formerly known as RV530, is ATI's latest mid-range graphics. We’ve got a reference sample for this model from ATI, so we will compare its performance to other members of the Radeon X1000 series, to previous ATI chips and also with competing products from NVIDIA. The main issue with this video card is that it will reach the market only in December!

ATI Radeon X1600 XT
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Figure 1: Radeon X1600 XT reference board.

We’ve posted a complete article explaining what’s new on Radeon X1000 series, so we won’t be repeating here everything we have already explained there. The big news is that all chips from this series are finally supporting Shader 3.0 model (DirectX 9.0c).

So far ATI announced two chips on Radeon X1600 family: X1600 XT and X1600 Pro. X1600 XT runs at 590 MHz and accesses its memory at 1.38 GHz (22.08 GB/s) and it will reach the market only on November 30th, 2005 at a suggested price of USD 199 for the 128 MB version and USD 249 for the 256 MB version. X1600 Pro runs at 500 MHz, accesses its memory at 780 MHz (12.48 GB/s) and will also arrive at the market on on November 30th, 2005, at a suggested price of USD 149 for the 128 MB version and USD 199 for the 256 MB version.

Our review will help us to say what are exactly the competitors to Radeon X1600 XT because we can’t figure this out by simply observing the price ranges. Actually, pricing for this series is a little bit confusing: Radeon X1600 Pro 256 MB will cost the same thing as Radeon X1600 XT 128 MB. This can be really misleading to the average user.

You can see in our tutorial “ATI Chips Comparison table” the difference between this new chip and the other chips from ATI, while on our tutorial “NVIDIA Chips Comparison Table” you can compare it to its competitors from NVIDIA.

You can see the Radeon X1600 XT reference board on Figures 2 and 3.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT
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Figure 2: ATI Radeon X1600 XT reference board.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT
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Figure 3: ATI Radeon X1600 XT reference board, back view.

Let’s now take a closer look at the Radeon X1600 XT reference board from ATI.

The Radeon X1600 XT Reference Board from ATI

We disassembled the video card heatsink to take a look, see Figure 4. As you can see, the entire heatsink is made of copper.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT
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Figure 4: Video card with its heatsink detached.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT
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Figure 5: The entire heatsink is made of copper.

This video card uses four GDDR3 512-Mbit 1.2 ns chips from Samsung (K4J52324QC-BJ12)to give it 256 MB of video memory (512 Mbits x 4 = 256 MB). These chips can run up to 1.6 GHz. Since this video card accesses the memory at 1.38 GHz, there is almost 16% headroom for memory overclocking inside the memory’s specifications. But of course you can try overclock it over its specs. So, in theory this video card has good overclockable memories. Keep in mind that we are talking about a pre-production sample; the final model from ATI partners can use a different memory chip model.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT
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Figure 6: 1.2 ns GDDR3 memory chip used by ATI Radeon X1600 XT reference board.

The reference board doesn’t have video capture function (VIVO). However, as you can see on the left hand side in Figure 4, there is a place on the board to have an ATI Rage Theater chip soldered in the future, if an ATI partner wants to release a model with VIVO function.

Main Specifications

How We Tested

During our benchmarking sessions, we used the configuration listed below. Between our benchmarking sessions the only variable was the video card being tested.

Hardware Configuration

Software Configuration

Used Software

We adopted a 3% error margin; thus, differences below 3% cannot be considered relevant. In other words, products with a performance difference below 3% should be considered as having similar performance.

3DMark2001 SE

3DMark2001 SE measures video card performance simulating DirectX 8.1 games. It is very effective software for evaluating the performance from previous-generation games, programmed using DirectX 8. In this software we run six tests. We run the software in three resolutions, 1024x768x32, 1280x1024x32 and 1600x1200x32, first without antialising and with no frame buffer, then we put the antialising at 4 samples and the frame buffer at triple-buffering. This improves the video quality but lowers the performance. We were willing to see how much performance we lost by putting the VGA to run at the maximum possible image quality. It is important to note that ATI chips can run at 6x antialising. Since NVIDIA chips cannot run at this configuration, we had to use 4x antialising to use a configuration that is valid to all video cards included in our bechmarks, allowing direct comparison between them.

You may be asking yourself why we added an old program in a review of a latest generation  video card. To us, it is as important to know the performance of a video card with the latest games as it is to know its performance in an older game. That’s why we kept this software in our methodology.

Radeon X1000 Series


At a resolution of 1024x768 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 6.63% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 11.10% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 14.74% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 37.45% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT, 40.57% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600 and 58.35% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to HIS Radeon X800 GT and NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which  was 15.80% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which  was 14.43% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which  was 10.03% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which  was 8.17% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which  was 5.95% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which  was 5.93% faster, and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which  was 3.82% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1280x1024 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 6.87% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 8.17% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 9.97% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 49.13% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 50.83% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 79.53% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 23.72% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 22.72% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 18.18% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 17.94% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 16.25% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 14.47% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 8.42% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 8.40% faster, and HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 6.35% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1600x1200 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 5.75% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 13.66% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 59.85% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 78.14% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 115.20% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to PowerColor Radeon X800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 38.02% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 33.84% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 31.12% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 30.52% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 26.99% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 25.27% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 15.90% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 13.88% faster and HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 7.02% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1024x768 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 6.92% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 8.94% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 23.46% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 73.22% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT, 88.55%  faster than Albatron GeForce 6600 and 105.04% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT and HIS Radeon X800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 23.46% faster than, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 21.20% faster than, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 17.75% faster than, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 16.85% faster than, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 14.10% faster than, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 8.92% faster than and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 3.63% faster than.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1280x1024 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 11.88% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 31.91% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 100.04% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT, 128.68% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600 and 140.36% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to HIS Radeon X800 GT and PowerColor Radeon X800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 39.91% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 33.36% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 30.33% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 26.17% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 23.76% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 17.85% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 9.28% faster and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 6.48% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1600x1200 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 27.33% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 136.90% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 163.00% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 223.45% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 114.62% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 93.37% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 92.35% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 85.82% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 82.25% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 71.05% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 44.42% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 40.34% faster, PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, which was 28.92% faster, HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 26.46% faster and Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, which was 12.17% faster.

3DMark03

3DMark03 measures performance by simulating games written to DirectX 9, which are contemporary games. We run this program in three resolutions, 1024x768x32, 1280x1024x32 and 1600x1200x32, first without antialising and anisotropic filtering, and then configuring antialising at 4x and anisotropic filtering also at 4x. This improves the video quality but lowers the performance. We were willing to see how much performance we lost by putting the VGA to run at the maximum possible image quality. It is important to note that ATI chips can run at 6x antialising. Since NVIDIA chips cannot run at this configuration, we had to use 4x antialising to use a configuration that is valid to all video cards included in our bechmarks, allowing direct comparison between them.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1024x768 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 10.11% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 16.09% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 28.20% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 92.94% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 126.55% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 169.67% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to HIS Radeon X800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 67.14% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX,  which was 65.46% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX,  which was 60.44% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT,  which was 47.13% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL,  which was 40.55% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E.,  which was 36.68% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT,  which was 20.01% faster and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked),  which was 14.04% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1280x1024 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 14.93% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 29.75% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 96.24% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 132.21% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 176.94% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to HIS Radeon X800 GT and PowerColor Radeon X800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT,  which was 87.89% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX,  which was 82.03% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX,  which was 76.28% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT,  which was 58.39% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL,  which was 53.69% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E.,  which was 48.55% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT,  which was 27.26% faster and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked),  which was 20.45% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1600x1200 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 4.15% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 14.12% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 34.46% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 97.72% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 148.47% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 194.66% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to HIS Radeon X800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT,  which was 103.04% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX,  which was 98.62% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX,  which was 91.26% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT,  which was 85.50% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL,  which was 65.12% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E.,  which was 58.85% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT,  which was 34.92% faster and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked),  which was 27.33% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1024x768 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 4.49% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 6.07% faster than HIS Radeon X800 GT, 19.18% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 45.94% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 109.34% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 153.20% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 197.37% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 120.75% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 106.91% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 99.46% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 87.32% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 80.78% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 62.88% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 38.99% faster and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 23.58% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1280x1024 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 6.97% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 7.83% faster than HIS Radeon X800 GT, 47.11% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 52.69% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 150.30% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 177.35% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 209.16% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 141.53% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 114.04% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 106.38% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 93.46% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 82.57% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 67.55% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 38.03% faster and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 19.64% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1600x1200 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 3.63% faster than HIS Radeon X800 GT, 47.15% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 54.69% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 158.62% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 262.84% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 288.30% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to PowerColor Radeon X800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 177.26% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 143.03% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 131.48% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 121.12% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 118.64% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 89.16% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 51.28% faster and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 32.19% faster.

3DMark05

3DMark05 measures performance by simulating DirectX 9.0c games, i.e., using the new Shader 3.0 model. This programming model is used by Far Cry game and other games to be launched in the future. This new programming model is used by GeForce 6 and 7 series from NVIDIA and Radeon X1000 series from ATI.

We run this program in three resolutions, 1024x768x32, 1280x1024x32 and 1600x1200x32, first without antialising and anisotropic filtering, and then configuring antialising at 4x and anisotropic filtering also at 4x. This improves the video quality but lowers the performance. We were willing to see how much performance we lost by putting the VGA to run at the maximum possible image quality. It is important to note that ATI chips can run at 6x antialising. Since NVIDIA chips cannot run at this configuration, we had to use 4x antialising to use a configuration that is valid to all video cards included in our benchmark, allowing direct comparison between them.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1024x768 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 10.01% faster than NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, 24.99% faster than HIS Radeon X800 GT, 31.97% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 72.94% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 73.78% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 193.42% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 248.29% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 265.64% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked).

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 44.70% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 39.39% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 36.02% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 29.65% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 27.09% faster and ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 14.85% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1280x1024 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 9.08% faster than NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, 27.98% faster than HIS Radeon X800 GT, 34.46% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 81.31% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 108.74% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 224.46% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 292.79% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro and 311.79% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked).

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 59.95% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 53.68% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 48.52% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 35.96% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 34.74% faster and ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 16.03% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1600x1200 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 9.22% faster than NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, 38.93% faster than HIS Radeon X800 GT, 39.27% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 88.71% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 167.09% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 257.63% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 314.74% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro and 376.84% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked).

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT which was 73.64% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 65.58% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 59.09% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 41.77% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 41.74% faster and ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 16.44% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1024x768 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 10.05% faster than NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, 15.58% faster than HIS Radeon X800 GT, 27.09% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 82.44% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 216.39% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 292.29% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro, 335.51% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600 and 350.94% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked).

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT which was 66.70% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 54.15% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 48.62% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 44.25% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 36.52% faster and ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 22.08% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

To run at 1280x1024 enabling image quality enhancements on 3DMark05 the video card must have at least 256 MB of memory, because of that some video cards couldn’t run this test. Here ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 10.98% faster than NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, 31.27% faster than HIS Radeon X800 GT, 32.49% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 91.35% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 310.34% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro and 467.13% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT.

 ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked).

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 83.31% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 64.16% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 57.39% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 49.17% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 41.55% faster and ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 22.25% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

To run at 1600x1200 enabling image quality enhancements on 3DMark05 the video card must have at least 256 MB of memory, because of that some video cards couldn’t run this test. Here ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 18.41% faster than NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, 35.73% faster than HIS Radeon X800 GT, 35.94% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 92.43% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 348.90% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro and 675.37% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked).

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 100.00% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 63.77% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 59.04% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 57.64% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 41.68% faster and ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 25.76% faster.

Doom 3

Doom 3 is one of the heaviest games available today. As we’ve done on other programs, we ran this game at three resolutions: 1024x768x32, 1280x1024x32 and 1600x1200x32. This game allows several image quality levels and we’ve done our benchmarking on two levels, low and high. We ran demo1 four times and wrote the obtained number of frames per second. The first result we discarded at once, since it is far inferior than the other results. This happens because at the first time we run the demo the game must load all textures to video memory, fact that doesn’t happen from the second time we run the demo on. From the three results left, we consider as our official result the middle result, i.e., we discard the highest and the lowest values. Curiously almost all times the values obtained at the second round on were the same.

A very important detail that we must mention is that Doom 3 has an internal FPS lock: it is only capable of generating 60 frames per second, even if your board is able to produce more frames per second than that. This is done in order to make the game to have the same "playability" sensation independently from the video card installed on the PC. This lock, however, is disabled in the game benchmarking mode.

For further details on how to measure 3D performance with Doom 3, read our tutorial on this subject.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1024x768 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 19.78% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 23.11% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 115.53% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 164.29% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 43.99% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 41.89% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 41.29% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 41.29% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 40.24% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 26.88% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 25.83% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 24.17% faster, XFX GeForce 6600 GT, which was 13.96% faster, PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, which was 4.65% faster and HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 4.65% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1280x1024 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 19.84% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 22.13% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 128.06% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 179.38% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 104.47% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 102.46% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 102.24% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 95.75% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 80.76% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 71.36% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 69.57% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 39.82% faster, XFX GeForce 6600 GT, which was 34.00% faster, PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, which was 6.26% faster and HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 4.70% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1600x1200 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 19.62% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 24.31% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 141.98% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 199.06% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to PowerColor Radeon X800 GT and HIS Radeon X800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 158.99% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 154.89% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 144.48% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 140.38% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 103.15% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 99.05% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 96.85% faster, XFX GeForce 6600 GT, which was 44.79% faster and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 41.64% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1024x768 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 21.03% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 25.26% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 119.42% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 166.38% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.
 
ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 56.23% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 54.75% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 53.77% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 53.44% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 51.15% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 37.05% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 33.93% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 31.48% faster, XFX GeForce 6600 GT, which was 16.07% faster, PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, which was 8.36% faster and HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 7.38% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1280x1024 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 21.22% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 24.85% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 126.63% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 178.00% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 116.31% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 114.63% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 112.71% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 107.91% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 87.53% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 78.42% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 73.62% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 43.88% faster, XFX GeForce 6600 GT, which was 33.09% faster, PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, which was 8.15% faster and HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 6.47% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1600x1200 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 21.60% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 26.14% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 162.07% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 195.15% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to PowerColor Radeon X800 GT and HIS Radeon X800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 165.79% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 162.83% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 149.34% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 147.37% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 101.97% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 100.99% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 98.36% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 43.09% faster and XFX GeForce 6600 GT, which was 42.76% faster.

Far Cry

Far Cry is a game based on the new Shader 3.0 (DirectX 9.0c) programming model available on series 6 and 7 from NVIDIA and series X1000 from ATI graphics chips. We’ve updated the game to version 1.3.
 
As we’ve done on other programs, we ran this game at three resolutions, 1024x768x32, 1280x1024x32 and 1600x1200x32. This game allows several image quality levels and we’ve done our benchmarking on two levels, low and very high. To measure the performance we used the demo created by German magazine PC Games Hardware (PCGH), available at http://www.3dcenter.org/downloads/farcry-pcgh-vga.php. We run this demo four times and made an arithmetical average with the results. This average is the result presented in our graphs.

This game has a very important detail in its image quality configuration. Antialising, instead of being configured by numbers (1x, 2x, 4x or 6x) is configured as low, medium or high. The problem is that on NVIDIA chips both medium and high mean 4x, while on ATI chips medium means 2x and high means 6x, making the comparison between ATI and NVIDIA chips completely unfair. Because of that we configured antialising at 4x and anisotropic filtering at 8x manually at the video driver control panel.

For further details on how to measure 3D performance with Far Cry, read our tutorial on this subject.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1024x768 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 5.68% faster than MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, 6.26% faster than XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, 7.04% faster than NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, 8.80% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT, 10.62% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 10.74% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 16.86% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 19.81% faster than NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT and 28.37% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to HIS Radeon X800 GT, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., ATI Radeon X1800 XT, Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, ATI Radeon X1800 XL and GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked).

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1280x1024 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 5.42% faster than MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, 5.68% faster than XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, 6.61% faster than NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, 10.01% faster than NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, 10.06% faster than PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, 10.41% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 57.57% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT, 59.96% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600 and 92.56% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., HIS Radeon X800 GT, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), ATI Radeon X1800 XL, ATI Radeon X1800 XT and Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1600x1200 without any image quality enhancement, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 10.71% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 15.01% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 90.96% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 102.29% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT and 147.72% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT achieved a performance similar to PowerColor Radeon X800 GT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 18.66% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 17.59% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 17.20% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 17.17% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 10.68% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 10.24% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 10.06% faster, HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 6.04% faster and NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 5.48% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1024x768 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 17.66% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 25.16% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 102.41% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 134.74% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro and 155.66% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 59.90% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 59.78% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 59.01% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 58.26% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 57.34% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 57.34% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 44.77% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 41.79% faster, PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, which was 16.49% faster and HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 14.42% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1280x1024 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 26.21% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 37.84% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 136.16% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 151.52% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro and 161.31% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 111.52% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 104.10% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 99.86% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 96.68% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 90.87% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 88.51% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 45.80% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 44.79% faster, PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, which was 12.08% faster and HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 7.98% faster.

Radeon X1000 Series

At a resolution of 1600x1200 enabling image quality enhancements, ATI Radeon X1600 XT was 22.49% faster than Sapphire Radeon X700 Pro, 25.50% faster than XFX GeForce 6600 GT, 117.29% faster than Albatron GeForce 6600, 204.85% faster than Sapphire Radeon X600 Pro and 249.64% faster than ATI Radeon X600 XT.

ATI Radeon X1600 XT was beaten by ATI Radeon X1800 XT, which was 193.27% faster, XFX GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 147.04% faster, ATI Radeon X1800 XL, which was 142.19% faster, MSI GeForce 7800 GTX, which was 137.05% faster, ATI Radeon X850 XT P.E., which was 121.26% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT, which was 113.59% faster, GeCube Radeon X800 GTO (which is factory-overclocked), which was 59.93% faster, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT, which was 39.90% faster, PowerColor Radeon X800 GT, which was 14.69% faster and HIS Radeon X800 GT, which was 13.18% faster.

Conclusions

It is hard to describe Radeon X1600 XT since from our results it looks like a completely schizophrenic graphics chip. Let’s see.

It is faster than mid-range chips like GeForce 6600 GT, Radeon X600 XT and Radeon X700 Pro, but when compared to GeForce 6800 GT, Radeon X800 GT and Radeon X800 GTO it is a mess.

On 3DMark03, which is based on Shader 2.0 (DirectX 9.0), GeForce 6800 GT was between 20.01% and 51.28% faster and Radeon X800 GTO was up to 16.38% faster than Radeon X1600 XT. Radeon X1600 XT was up to 7.83% faster than Radeon X800 GT under this software.

On 3DMark05, which is based on Shader 3.0 (DirectX 9.0c), Radeon X1600 XT was between 10.01% and 18.41% faster than GeForce 6800 GT, between 15.58% and 35.73% faster than Radeon X800 GT and between 11.41% and 18.21% faster than Radeon X800 GTO.

On Far Cry, Radeon X1600 XT was faster at 1024x768 and 1280x1024 with no image quality settings enabled than GeForce 6800 GT, but GeForce 6800 GT was between 5.48% and 44.79% faster on other resolutions. On this same game, Radeon X800 GT achieve a similar performance at 1024x768 and 1280x1024 with no image quality settings enabled, and was 10% faster at 1600x1200, but when image quality settings were enabled, Radeon X1600 XT become between 7.98% and 14.42% faster. And Radeon X800 GTO was up to 38.96% faster than Radeon X1600 XT on this game!

Doom3 continues to be NVIDIA’s arena, as GeForce 6800 GT was between 24.17% and 103.15% faster than Radeon X1600 XT. Radeon X800 GT and Radeon X800 GTO were also faster than Radeon X1600 XT on this game.

So, excluding 3DMark05, Radeon X800 GTO is faster than this forthcoming chip from ATI! You may think that’s because 3DMark05 is Shader 3.0. Can be, but how to explain the better performance of Radeon X800 GTO on Far Cry, a Shader 3.0 game?

O.k., let’s assume that Radeon X1600 XT is really the best Shader 3.0 mid-range graphics chip, but how about the other kind of games? What is the point of having a terrific Shader 3.0 performance while its performance on all other kind of games is lower than its competitors?

If you compare pricing, it is even more insane: Radeon X1600 XT with 256 MB will have a suggested price of USD 249 and will reach the market only in December, while we can find Radeon X800 GTO with 256 MB being sold today on the USD 180 range.

Oh, yeah. It’s suggested price is below GeForce 6800 GT price range, of USD 290 today. But who knows how prices will be in December?

This can be a driver issue, since we were running a beta version. We can only say that for sure when the first final products arrive on the market.
 
A side note: as you can see on our graphs, we included two Radeon X800 GTOs in our comparisons, one from HIS and another from GeCube. GeCube model runs overclocked, so our comparisons above refer to HIS model.

Originally at http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/ATI-Radeon-X1600-XT-Review/230


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