|Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3P DDR2 P45 Motherboard|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Motherboards|
|Written by Bruce Normann - Edited by Olin Coles|
|Sunday, 25 January 2009|
Page 13 of 16
Lightsmark 2008 Benchmarks
Stepan Hrbek is the mastermind behind Lightsmark 2008, a program that allows you to benchmark real-time global illumination. Natural lighting makes artificial graphics life-like and real. Computers get faster, but rendering more polygons doesn't add value if lighting still looks faked, so insiders know that the next big thing is proper lighting; aka Real-time Global Illumination.
Before Lightsmark, real-time global illumination was limited to small scenes, small resolutions, small speeds, specially crafted scenes with handmade optimizations. Lightsmark breaks all limits at once, running in reasonably sized scene (220000 triangles) in high resolutions at excellent speed. Lightsmark is comparable to lower-demand OpenGL video games, such as: Call of Duty 4, Prey, Quake 4, and Doom 3.
This scene places medium to low demands on a graphics card processor and tests the maximum speed with which the scene can be properly displayed at each resolution. At the lower resolution, the large frame buffer does not offer the same benefits as it would at a higher resolution. Additionally, the larger video memory means a longer round-trip for information, and when the resolution is low that trip doesn't last very long and needs to be completed very quickly.
At this, relatively low resolution, there is more emphasis placed on memory bandwidth than raw GPU processing power. Even so, there is little to choose from the three results. The lowest frame rate is still close to 600 FPS! Once again, heavy duty graphics users are best served by optimizing their video sub-system to the programs they need to run. Benchmark Reviews has run extensive testing on which video cards work best with this particular scene rendering software. Take a look here on Benchmark Reviews for a good sample of modern cards and how they perform with this unique rendering challenge. FWIW, this may also be the only test where the extra bandwidth of the PCI-E 2.0 interface makes a difference.
We're finished with the application performance benchmarking, now let's look at measuring the power consumtion of the GA-EP45-UD3P, both in some normal operating states and some special conditions to highlight and isolate specific components.