Windows Vista 3D graphics performance: Part 3 - ATI (DirectX 10)
It seems like an eternity ago that we investigated performance under Windows Vista for both ATI and NVIDIA's last generation of DirectX 9 boards, with a promise to move straight on to examine both graphics IHVs DirectX 10 parts in a similar fashion. Of course, as with all of the best laid plans, that didn't quite go to schedule, with a flood of other hardware arriving in the Elite Bastards review dungeon washing away any chance to spend the requisite time with the boards that we needed.
So, nearly four months later, here we are at last, refreshed and reinvigorated, ready to see how ATI's high-end Radeon HD 2900 XT graphics board performs comparitively under Windows Vista and Windows XP Professional. Our DirectX 9 board testing in this fashion gave us some rather mixed results, and although there wasn't a great deal to tell between the two Operating Systems in a number of titles, a handful of bugs and performance issues meant that driver performance under Microsoft's latest OS very much gained a 'still room for improvement' tag.
So, will we see similar results from ATI's DirectX 10 parts? Several extra months of driver development and a part more specifically designed around Windows Vista's 3D graphics API would lead us to hope not. However, the proof is, as they say, in the pudding, so let's grab a handful of real-world game titles and see just how that pudding tastes with regard to ATI's Catalyst 7.8 driver on both Operating Systems.