Nvidia GeForce 7900 GT (256MB) review: Nvidia GeForce 7900 GT (256MB)

In addition to raw pixel pushing, we've come to rely on a number of features to make our 3D games look their best. Antialiasing is perhaps the best-known trick. Depending on how high you set a 3D card's antialiasing levels (2X, 4X, and so on), you can eliminate in greater thoroughness the jagged-line effect you see on diagonal lines in 3D-rendered space. A newer feature is called high dynamic range lighting, or HDR lighting. This 3D effect pushes lights and darks to their limit, creating the appearance of convincing light blooms, shadowed objects that retain their surface details, and other effects. Both Nvidia's and ATI's cards support antialiasing and HDR lighting, but only ATI's Radeon cards currently do both at the same time. Missing out on one or the other isn't a game-stopping sacrifice, but for games that support both (the Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, for example), the combined effects look great, and it's a shame to have to miss out by opting for an Nvidia card.

F.E.A.R. (in fps)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1,280x960  
1,600x1,200  

Half-Life 2: Lost Coast demo (in fps)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1,280x1,024  
1,600x1,200  

Doom 3 custom demo (in fps)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1,280x1,024  
1,600x1,200  

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