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AGP fast writes study

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Well I heard some information going around that it's faster to disable agp fast writes. After looking what fast writes is, it seemed like a better idea to leave it on though. So I decided to do some tests and I'll share my results with you. Also if you could submit your own results, especially you nVdia guys, maybe we can come to a better conclusion.

Test 1: Fast writes on
3Dmar05: 6183 3Dmarks
CS:S stress test: 113.06 FPS

Test 2: Fast writes off
3Dmark05: 6260 3Dmarks
CS:S stress test: 111 FPS

Results: A 77 point gain was noted in 3Dmark05 with fast writes disabled, however a 2 fps loss was noted in CS:S stress test with fast writes enabled.

Conclusion: We need more tests run on different cards although there is a possibility that it is better to have fast writes off.
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post #2 of 17
Fastwrites make absolutely no difference with today's video cards (256MB or Greater Discrete Video Memory) thus the testing you have done is well within the realm of standard normal deviation that can be produced with any form of benchmarks.

Fast Writes are a technology that is part of the AGP 2.0 specification and is a technique that offers a slight performance benefit with AGP graphics cards but only when transferring via AGP DME (Direct Memory Executive) texturing transfers. In theory it allows the CPU to bypass the system memory and send data straight to the graphics chip thus eliminating a bottleneck at the memory bus. This was important when the graphics cards employed 32/64MB of RAM and thus texture transfers via the System Memory was necessary and thus DME (remember Bus Mastering?) allowed for greater texture quality transfers removing the CPU from the transfer I/O equation except for BOS (Beginning of Stream) and EOS (End of Stream) commands.

With your X800XT at 256MB there is little if any AGP DME transfers taking place anymore and the system bus slowdown would make up the benchmark difference via discrete (on Video Card Board) transfer at any rate.

There are a few cards that have a recognition built into the card that necessitates the implementation in the BIOS of Fast Writes even though they are not being used so it is necessary for this setting to be placed in the BIOS but it really is getting to be legacy and will soon be removed from BIOS's.

The last card that needed this implementation was (I believe) the ATi 9600 series.

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post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ropey
Fastwrites make absolutely no difference with today's video cards (256MB or Greater Discrete Video Memory) thus the testing you have done is well within the realm of standard normal deviation that can be produced with any form of benchmarks.

Fast Writes are a technology that is part of the AGP 2.0 specification and is a technique that offers a slight performance benefit with AGP graphics cards but only when transferring via AGP DME (Direct Memory Executive) texturing transfers. In theory it allows the CPU to bypass the system memory and send data straight to the graphics chip thus eliminating a bottleneck at the memory bus. This was important when the graphics cards employed 32/64MB of RAM and thus texture transfers via the System Memory was necessary and thus DME (remember Bus Mastering?) allowed for greater texture quality transfers removing the CPU from the transfer I/O equation.

With your X800XT at 256MB there is little if any AGP DME transfers taking place anymore and the system bus slowdown would make up the benchmark difference via discrete (on Video Card Board) transfer at any rate.

There are a few cards that have a recognition built into the card that necessitates the implementation in the BIOS of Fast Writes even though they are not being used so it is necessary for this setting to be placed in the BIOS but it really is getting to be legacy and will soon be removed from BIOS's.

The last card that needed this implementation was (I believe) the ATi 9600 series.

R
Interesting. Rep +. But if you had my comptuer which setting would you be using? On or off?
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post #4 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishie36
But if you had my comptuer which setting would you be using? On or off?
For your system there would not be any difference that I can see one way or the other as DME will not be imposed on your X800XT PE.

There are some Video cards that will react poorly to Fast Writes disabled as I mentioned however they are becoming less and less by gaming attrition.

Some people say that overclocks are higher (on the Video Card) with them disabled but I can not see how this would make a difference. You could test the overclock to see though.

It would be interesting to note if you found overclock differences that are beyond the normal standard statistical deviation that the very testing concludes though so I will follow this thread just in case you decide to do so.

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post #5 of 17
You may aswel have it off as you wont see any benifits from it, The newer tech just doesnt take advantage from it anymore.
post #6 of 17
you can gain that 2 fps back if you overclock the card lol.
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post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 
Sure I'll test max OC with it off. But I'm also having this other problem that might interfere. We'll see...
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post #8 of 17
what problem fisheroo -ponders-
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post #9 of 17
I have a 9600 pro and have Fastwrites enabled and it seems to be a little better.
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post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by tuchan
I have a 9600 pro and have Fastwrites enabled and it seems to be a little better.
Yes you would probably notice a performance gain with an older card such as your 9600
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