iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






January 2002 3Digest - NVIDIA GeForce2 Pro 32 MBytes

By Andrey Vorobiev

This chip is presented by AOpen PA256 Deluxe II 32 MBytes, AGP videocard.


  • NVIDIA GeForce2 Pro chip, 200 MHz clock rate;
  • 32 MBytes DDR SDRAM memory in 4 Ascend 5ns microchips, 200 (400) MHz clock rate , 128-bit bus;
  • Peak fill rate in the multitexturing mode is 800 megapixels/sec and 1600 megatexels/sec.

When GeForce2 GTS with relatively slow 166 MHz DDR memory appeared almost a year ago, many reviewers said have marked that these unbalanced cards are temporary phenomena and have began waiting for cards with faster memory. This period has lasted for several months and the first examples of these cards have appeared in the Fall'2000 only. According to expectations, the faster 200 MHz DDR memory had greatly boosted the perfomance and these cards have been named "Pro". Their price has been higher than that of previous GeForce2 products. In spite of the "Pro" suffix, actually it's the same GeForce2 GTS chip with the same 200 MHz clock rate. Despite NVIDIA's recommendations about 64 MBytes memory for these cards, some manufacturers have released 32 MBytes variants. These cards are the middle of game class, but as NVIDIA has decided to replace GeForce2 GTS with faster GeForce2 Pro, their prices began to lower, that especially influences 32 MBytes variants.

However the destiny of these cards is predetermined. They are being replaced by GeForce2 Ti having higher core clock rate of 250 MHz instead of 200 MHz and do not vary much in price. Thus GeForce2 Pro are being replaced at full speed now; I think they'll be out of counters in a month or two.

Wasn't overclocked.

For the 20th of January 2002 the latest drivers from NVIDIA are 16.30, 23.12, 27.00 and 27.20. As the drivers differences are equal for all GeForce2 GTS/Pro/Ultra cards, there's no sense in comparing drivers separately for each of these cards. See NVIDIA GeForce2 Pro 64 MBytes 5ns section for more information about drivers.

And now I want to attract your attention to another important 3D feature - filtering. As many of you know, all chipsets support bilinear filtering that is an important instrument in MIP-mapping, some chipsets support trilinear filtering (true, not the approximation) and only few support anisotropic filtering.

Due to the fact that GeForce2 and GeForce3 do support anisotropic filtering, I recommend you to pay attention to the article concerning this feature.

There's no criticism about 3D quality in all the games tested. I want to mark perfect image quality and good speed in FSAA 2x:

You can compare screenshots with reference ones (NVIDIA GeForce3).

Games / Cards 1 2 3 4 5 6

Games / Cards 7 8 9 10 11 12

Games / Cards 13 14 15 16 17 18
NVIDIA GeForce2 -

Games / Cards 19 20 21 22 23 24
NVIDIA GeForce2 - -

Games / Cards 25 26 27 28

Game list:

  • 1. Return to Castle Wolfenstein
  • 2. Unreal2 - for GeForce cards, Unreal - for all other
  • 3. Comanche4
  • 4. No One Lives Forever
  • 5. Serious Sam
  • 6. Colin McRAE Rally2
  • 7. Red Faction
  • 8. Rally Trophy
  • 9. Sacrifice
  • 10. Venom
  • 11. Need For Speed V (Porshe 2000)
  • 12. Real MYST
  • 13. Blade of Darkness
  • 14. Giants
  • 15. 3DMark2001: Game1
  • 16. 3DMark2001: Game2
  • 17. 3DMark2001: Game3
  • 18. 3DMark2001: Game4
  • 19. 3DMark2001: Dot3
  • 20. 3DMark2001: EMBM
  • 21. 3DMark2001: Vertex Shaders
  • 22. 3DMark2001: Pixel Shaders
  • 23. Black & White
  • 24. Undying
  • 25. Anachronox
  • 26. Max Payne
  • 27. AquaNox
  • 28. Serious Sam II

2D quality is very good. Soaping effects can be seen only on some low-quality monitors in 1600x1200x85 Hz. But there are some low-quality cards present that give soaping effect on good monitors. And I shall mark that 6.* version drivers are not compatible with the software for sound cards based on Yamaha processor, as well as with SoftXG100 software synthesizer. Start or Close Window buttons can be spoiled by some "garbage" in 2D mode.

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