The Test

Despite the fact that the Radeon 9600 Pro Mac & PC Edition doesn't use the most desirable gaming GPU in the world, we have to evaluate its performance as one to see exactly where it falls in the grand scheme of things.  PC users can look back at any of our Radeon 9600 articles to get an idea of the performance of the GPU in PC games, as this performance comparison will only focus on Mac platforms. 

For our test bed, we used a Power Mac G5 with dual G5 2.0GHz processors and 1GB of OCZ DDR400 memory. We used a Dell 2001FP with the desktop resolution set to 1600 x 1200. The system was running OS X 10.4.2 with all of the latest updates installed as of today.  The only extra software installed was ATI's control panel, which ships with the Radeon 9600 Pro Mac & PC Edition (both the Mac and PC software is included in the box on two separate CDs). 

ATI's Mac control panel lets you configure quite a bit, especially with regards to flat panel display options:

Since Apple does not offer any AA/AF setting adjustments, ATI requires you to create a profile for each game that you want to force AA/AF settings on:

The Card UI Performance


View All Comments

  • Fulie - Saturday, December 10, 2005 - link

    I just stumbled on to this write up and trying to get information on blending systems has been a major pain. I have a pc that is used for viewing images at high res. and an unused 23" older mac lcd (clear surround with a seperate power source and ADC TO DVI connector) display that I would like to use with this pc. I don't need game speeds but use dvd video on occasion. From the specs. It sounds like it will work, any ideas? Reply
  • sprockkets - Saturday, August 20, 2005 - link

    the pinout of the card looks agp 2x and not 4x/8x

  • PrinceGaz - Friday, August 19, 2005 - link

    Just a minor amendment. On page 2 you mention that "The actual GPU isn't any different than what we've had on the Mac and PC side for a while; it still runs at 400MHz like the OEM Radeon 9600XT and 9650".

    The GPU of a 9600XT is clocked at 500MHz, not 400MHz. It is the 9600Pro which has a GPU clocked at 400MHz. Which is what you would expect as the card you reviewed is a 9600Pro.
  • a2daj - Tuesday, August 23, 2005 - link

    The Apple OEM Radeon 9600 XTs were clocked at the same speed most PC manufacturers clocked their retail Radeon 9600 Pros. The OEM 9600 Pros were clocked even slower when they were first introduced. Reply
  • tooki - Friday, August 19, 2005 - link

    1. This is not the first cross-platform card. Most 3Dfx cards were cross-platform.
    2. The Power Mac G5 does not use a SATA optical drive, it's standard parallel ATA.
    3. ADC's high power requirements are because of ADC's ability to drive a 17" CRT display, not because of large LCDs.
  • stratusgd - Saturday, August 20, 2005 - link

    Actually, all G5 systems that Apple sells come with SATA drives, not PATA. Go look at Apple's website. Reply
  • SDA - Saturday, August 20, 2005 - link

    The poster you are replying to is referring to optical drives, not hard drives. Optical drives are drives that read or write optical media such as CDs and DVDs. Reply
  • a2daj - Friday, August 19, 2005 - link

    "1. This is not the first cross-platform card. Most 3Dfx cards were cross-platform."

    A Mac specific firmware had to be on the 3dfx cards starting with the Voodoo3s. The Voodoo3s were unsupported but you can flash them to run in a Mac. You had to reflash them to run in a PC. The Voodoo 4s and 5s had Mac specific firmware. They had to be flashed to run in PCs. You couldn't take a PC version and put it in a Mac and get it to run without flashing it.

    The Voodoo1s and 2s were just pass through cards which only did 3D so they didn't need Mac firmware to handle the 2D 16 bit Mac OS issues (5551 (Mac) vs 565 (PC))
  • lancediamond - Friday, August 19, 2005 - link

    Not entirely clear if you could do that unless I missed it - if so, that'd be sort of cool maybe? Reply
  • a2daj - Friday, August 19, 2005 - link

    Yes. That's the target PC audience. Reply

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