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Old May 3, 2004, 06:28 PM   #1
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Futuremark Respond to Driverheavens Geforce 6800 IQ issues.

A week ago we raised some concerns over the quality of images produced by the Geforce 6800 Ultra in 3Dmark03. We forwarded a note of our concerns to Futuremark and Nvidia, Futuremark have today provided us with a response.

Before we look at that response, it may be useful to read the original article which is located here: http://www.hardwareheaven.com/articles/driverIQ/

The short version of our concerns is that the 6800 Ultra was rendering an image that differed considerably from the images produced by 3dmark reference image. We were concerned that these changes were the result of optimisations which may not provide comparable results from the 6800 Ultra.

Here is the response Futuremark have provided:

“ We have studied carefully this issue and contacted NVIDIA and Microsoft regarding this. We re-tested the drivers and the result is the same as before: There are no 3DMark03 specific optimizations in Forceware 60.72 drivers for GeForce 6800 and they indeed fulfill 3DMark03 optimization guidelines with GeForce 6800.
The explanation for the rendering differences is GeForce 6800's new isotropic filtering algorithm: It differs from that of the reference rasterizer. There is an analysis of this available at Digit Life (http://www.digit-life.com/articles2/...0-part1-d.html). Based on all information we have, it seems that this algorithm is applied consistently the same way regardless of the application, i.e. it is not application specific and it is not targeting 3DMark specifically.
We also contacted Microsoft about the difference between the rendering of the reference rasterizer and NV40: "The DX9 reference rasterizer does not produce an ideal result for level-of-detail computation for isotropic filtering, the algorithm used in NV40 produces a higher quality result. Remember, our API is constantly evolving as is graphics hardware, we will continue to improve all aspects of our API including the reference rasterizer."
Now, the most interesting question is the performance effect. As regards 3DMark03, the performance effect due to this generic optimization is insignificant and should not cause incomparability of the results. “


So what does it all mean?

Firstly the news that the rendering differences do not impact performance is good and you can be confident that any 3Dmark03 scores you have seen posted in 6800 Ultra reviews are valid for comparison with cards which are available, or soon to be released.

The other side to the statement is the comment that the filtering method Nvidia are using is not specifically targeting 3Dmark03. To better understand how this filtering method impacts image quality, here is a sample of a 3Dmark frame from game test 2. The image on top is the reference image, the image on the bottom is the Nvidia 6800 image. You will notice the change in image quality from one image to the other in the red circled areas.





This is the type of IQ issue you are likely to see across all applications due to the NV40 rendering method. How significant or insignificant this is should be left up to each individual. You should also take into account the impact of these changes will vasy from game to game.

Thanks for reading, and we hope that our original article and this follow up have better explained the rendering of the NV40.



NOTE: I'd like to thank Tero Sarkkinen at Futuremark for the time and effort put into the investigations and response.
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Old May 3, 2004, 06:45 PM   #2
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Is that what NV calls high quality?
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Old May 3, 2004, 06:49 PM   #3
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If that is "Better IQ" then I do not want to see worse. Seriously, this looks hardware specific optimizations to improve performance.
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Old May 3, 2004, 07:09 PM   #4
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i have always noticed nvida has always tried to make everything speedy not looking great ever since geforce 2. i found my rage to display a better picture at the same settings lets say on CS, everything looked more rounded and smooth although it wasn't at 100 fps constantly. they can pull of some impressive shadows those cards, but image quality ever since rage i have seen a difference.
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Old May 3, 2004, 07:12 PM   #5
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Since last thread got locked, let me say, that was one great article. Thanks. Now if these darn cards would become available - I could continue my quest for a quiet pc - with nice IQ.
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Old May 3, 2004, 07:21 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by zerodamage
Seriously, this looks hardware specific optimizations to improve performance.

But it's ok...b/c it does that for all games
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Old May 3, 2004, 07:46 PM   #7
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Thank you Veridian for your truly beautiful and complete article.

We appreciate your efforts

Thanks also to Zardon and Driverheaven's staff , you are the last braveheart of the net.
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Old May 3, 2004, 07:52 PM   #8
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Re: Futuremark Respond to Driverheavens Geforce 6800 IQ issues.

Quote:
Originally posted by Veridian3
Here is the response Futuremark have provided:

“ We have studied carefully this issue and contacted NVIDIA and Microsoft regarding this. We re-tested the drivers and the result is the same as before: There are no 3DMark03 specific optimizations in Forceware 60.72 drivers for GeForce 6800 and they indeed fulfill 3DMark03 optimization guidelines with GeForce 6800.
The explanation for the rendering differences is GeForce 6800's new isotropic filtering algorithm: It differs from that of the reference rasterizer. There is an analysis of this available at Digit Life (http://www.digit-life.com/articles2/...0-part1-d.html). Based on all information we have, it seems that this algorithm is applied consistently the same way regardless of the application, i.e. it is not application specific and it is not targeting 3DMark specifically.
We also contacted Microsoft about the difference between the rendering of the reference rasterizer and NV40: "The DX9 reference rasterizer does not produce an ideal result for level-of-detail computation for isotropic filtering, the algorithm used in NV40 produces a higher quality result. Remember, our API is constantly evolving as is graphics hardware, we will continue to improve all aspects of our API including the reference rasterizer."
Now, the most interesting question is the performance effect. As regards 3DMark03, the performance effect due to this generic optimization is insignificant and should not cause incomparability of the results. “


Owned! Next time, you should investigate more carefully before writing down stuff you dont' know much about.
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Old May 3, 2004, 07:56 PM   #9
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Re: Re: Futuremark Respond to Driverheavens Geforce 6800 IQ issues.

Quote:
Originally posted by SJae
Owned! Next time, you should investigate more carefully before writing down stuff you dont' know much about.
Why the attitude...
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Old May 3, 2004, 08:00 PM   #10
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Sjae your eyes are painted of black or you are a Nvidia Shareholder ?

I suppose the second... :-)

Ban him LOL
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Old May 3, 2004, 08:29 PM   #11
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Re: Re: Re: Futuremark Respond to Driverheavens Geforce 6800 IQ issues.

Quote:
Originally posted by Cartman
Why the attitude...
The attitude b/c the way he wrote the original article was very unprofessional and inflammatory. Although the issue wasn't bought up here at Driverheaven, other forums clearly thought the article was too-soon, too-misinformed, ill-researched, and hasty (HardOCP, Rage3D, Anandtech, Beyond3D).

I understand the writer's eagerness to expose any cheats but he should've done more research.

BTW, to the one that accused me of being a nVIDIA fanboy...if I am a fanboy, why do I own a 9800Pro? I buy videocards based on what's best in terms of both performance and price. Your comment actually reflected the fanboyness/bias toward ATI.
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Old May 3, 2004, 09:08 PM   #12
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handbags away ladies, please
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Old May 3, 2004, 09:12 PM   #13
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no specifc optimization BUT it renders differently... and we can see it looks a bit worse... but apperantly it doesnt affect performance. why not render it a bit better if it doesnt hit performance? me confused
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Old May 3, 2004, 09:13 PM   #14
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handbags away ladies, please

ahhh it got this really nice guccie bag!!!
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Old May 3, 2004, 09:28 PM   #15
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Futuremark Respond to Driverheavens Geforce 6800 IQ issues.

Quote:
Originally posted by SJae
The attitude b/c the way he wrote the original article was very unprofessional and inflammatory. Although the issue wasn't bought up here at Driverheaven, other forums clearly thought the article was too-soon, too-misinformed, ill-researched, and hasty (HardOCP, Rage3D, Anandtech, Beyond3D).

I understand the writer's eagerness to expose any cheats but he should've done more research.

BTW, to the one that accused me of being a nVIDIA fanboy...if I am a fanboy, why do I own a 9800Pro? I buy videocards based on what's best in terms of both performance and price. Your comment actually reflected the fanboyness/bias toward ATI.
No, we are just "biased" to what is better.
The article actually WAS a research itself, because it was an experiment with 6800 and 3Dmark; or am I wrong?
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Old May 3, 2004, 09:34 PM   #16
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hehe, i'm a believer in the hardware being optimized for 3dmark.
if you take a stock 9800xt, lets say you get 6700 3dmarks. on the same rig with a 6800U you would get almost 11700. almost double score... (@ 1024*768 res)
but when you look at real-game benches the fps are not double.. and this is consistent from game to game. (maybe you get double fps in serious sam 2 (opengl) but who really cares?) ok gotta admit UT2004 fps is great on 6800U (again opengl).

FarCry is dx9 right?
and so is 3dmark03.

9800xt: 6700 3dmark , FarCry 60,2 fps
6800U: 11700 3dmark, FarCry 71,2 fps

hmm...?
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Old May 3, 2004, 10:32 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by zerodamage
If that is "Better IQ" then I do not want to see worse. Seriously, this looks hardware specific optimizations to improve performance.
likle thay said they don't just driver cheats there are more "hardware" based cheats now





just rember nvidia pays future mark alot of money to be in thier dev program, so they wont say much that will tick the off they want thier money
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Old May 3, 2004, 11:40 PM   #18
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I don't know what to say to all this...
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Old May 3, 2004, 11:48 PM   #19
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I have had it....I am going to buy a Matrox card...at least I know it will be slow and they never update drivers so I don't have to worry about one driver being better than the others....better yet I am putting my 4MB S3 Virge PCI card back in.....maybe I will put my voodoo 1 card in so I can play Halflife @ 15FPS.

You guys are crazy.
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Old May 4, 2004, 12:28 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by dsdsdk
FarCry is dx9 right?
and so is 3dmark03.

9800xt: 6700 3dmark , FarCry 60,2 fps
6800U: 11700 3dmark, FarCry 71,2 fps

hmm...?
You can't compare those two that easily. FarCry chokes on the system cpu more than 3dmark03. I mean, compare the results of Commanche4 running on the same system using first a geforce2 and then a 9800xt.

Some games/benchmarks are very cpu limited. 3dmarks is not.
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Old May 4, 2004, 12:55 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by snuffy
I have had it....I am going to buy a Matrox card...at least I know it will be slow and they never update drivers so I don't have to worry about one driver being better than the others....better yet I am putting my 4MB S3 Virge PCI card back in.....maybe I will put my voodoo 1 card in so I can play Halflife @ 15FPS.

You guys are crazy.
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Old May 4, 2004, 03:03 AM   #22
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I say ban SJae


PS: the original article was just stating his findings, didnt seem to me like there was anything unprofessional or inflammatory in it.
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Old May 4, 2004, 03:44 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by Turtle
I say ban SJae


PS: the original article was just stating his findings, didnt seem to me like there was anything unprofessional or inflammatory in it.
Ban me for voicing my opinion? You serious?
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Old May 4, 2004, 04:01 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by SJae
Ban me for voicing my opinion? You serious?

I was kidding did you not see --->
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Old May 4, 2004, 04:19 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally posted by Turtle
I was kidding did you not see --->
Some people are blind and take this way to seriously.

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Old May 4, 2004, 04:22 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally posted by war59312
Some people are blind and take this way to seriously.

true
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Old May 4, 2004, 04:35 AM   #27
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Everybody just settle down. This thread is about Futuremark's response, not SJae's.
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Old May 4, 2004, 06:07 AM   #28
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jonis, a P4 3.4GHz was used for that test. dont you think the score ratio looks just a tad odd?
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Old May 4, 2004, 09:56 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally posted by The_Neon_Cowboy
likle thay said they don't just driver cheats there are more "hardware" based cheats now





just rember nvidia pays future mark alot of money to be in thier dev program, so they wont say much that will tick the off they want thier money
i think ati are with futuremark dev program also, please correct me if i am wrong, so ati must cheat in hardware also ?
fair response from futuremark which prooves the article was a little hasty to say the least or is it a conspiracy again.

PS why is it that on most forums people are screaming for others to be banned ???
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Old May 4, 2004, 09:59 AM   #30
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Well I would respond but everytime I try to post, the forum tells me I'm not logged in, then I log in and it says "invalid thread" -- so for get it.
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