|ATI Radeon HD5450 HTPC Video Card|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Video Cards|
|Written by Bruce Normann|
|Thursday, 04 February 2010|
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3DMark Vantage Benchmark Results
3DMark Vantage is a computer benchmark by Futuremark (formerly named Mad Onion) to determine the DirectX 10 performance of 3D game performance with graphics cards. A 3DMark score is an overall measure of your system's 3D gaming capabilities, based on comprehensive real-time 3D graphics and processor tests. By comparing your score with those submitted by millions of other gamers you can see how your gaming rig performs, making it easier to choose the most effective upgrades or finding other ways to optimize your system.
There are two graphics tests in 3DMark Vantage: Jane Nash (Graphics Test 1) and New Calico (Graphics Test 2). The Jane Nash test scene represents a large indoor game scene with complex character rigs, physical GPU simulations, multiple dynamic lights, and complex surface lighting models. It uses several hierarchical rendering steps, including for water reflection and refraction, and physics simulation collision map rendering. The New Calico test scene represents a vast space scene with lots of moving but rigid objects and special content like a huge planet and a dense asteroid belt.
At Benchmark Reviews, we believe that synthetic benchmark tools are just as valuable as video games, but only so long as you're comparing apples to apples. Since the same test is applied in the same controlled method with each test run, 3DMark is a reliable tool for comparing graphic cards against one-another.
1680x1050 is rapidly becoming the new 1280x1024. More and more widescreen are being sold with new systems or as upgrades to existing ones. Even in tough economic times, the tide cannot be turned back; screen resolution and size will continue to creep up. These two, relatively low, resolutions are the most appropriate for a review of mainstream hardware, and we'll also be using the following reduced settings for 3DMark Vantage: No Anti-Aliasing, 2x Anisotropic Filtering, all quality levels at Entry, and Post Processing Scale set at 1:2.
Test one, all about the exploits of our fictional espionage heroine Jane Nash, has some wonderful graphics when quality levels are cranked up. The water modeling is exceptionally accurate and detailed. This is only a synthetic benchmark, so the results we get, in terms of frames-per-second are not always typical of real world gaming performance, but still.....I was hoping for somewhat better performance from the reduced specification hardware. Just for the record, the HD5450 slots in between the GeForce 8400GS and 8600GT for raw 3D graphics performance, but I have serious doubts if any of these cards will be able to hack it when we start up the actual gaming applications.
Test two is a little more challenging for most video cards, due to the large number of irregularly shaped asteroids that need to be rendered in New Calico. Once again, the HD5450 just barely gets out of the gate, with average FPS numbers in the low single digits. Dropping down to 1280x1024 doesn't really help. We really need to look at actual gaming performance to verify these results, so let's take a look in the next section, at how these cards stack up in the traditional standard bearer for gaming benchmarks, Crysis.