Half-Life 2 Engine 7 – Canals
Our second HL2 run through takes place in the Canals portion of the game where there are a lot of water reflections to deal with. Here’s a typical scene from our run through:
Again we see the 7800 GTX completely blow the 6800 Ultra scores out of the water, but the X850 XT PE seems to stick around a bit stronger. One thing to notice though is that from about time mark 69 and on in our line graphs, the level moves to an indoor tunnel section where much of the reflections and other effects are no longer visible. Looking at the 4xAA and 8xAF graph above, you can see that the green line that is the 7800 GTX is consistently 15+ FPS higher than the X850 XT PE card during the first 2/3 of the run through. Once we move indoors though, the ATI card is able to stay right up with the G70, thus we only see a 10 FPS gain overall for the 7800 GTX.
The SLI technology really shows its benefits here getting nearly a 50 FPS increase in performance with the AA and AF options turned up. Minimum frame rates almost double as well! And though the 6800 Ultra in SLI mode is still a great configuration for this game, the single 7800 GTX is nearly on par with it performance-wise.