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Date: March 13th, 2003.
Article by: Nathan Glentworth (Owner, Head Editor & Hardware Reviewer)
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ARTICLE INTENT


As you all know, the new Via Hyperion 4.46 chipset drivers were released for all Via based motherboards.


Now as the public always argues about is just if these drivers really do affect the performance of your Via based computer in a positive, negative or a neutral manner. Now, public opinion in the most part is that these drivers are intended to jack up the performance of your computer and fix bugs associated with the chipset. I remember my first stint with Via 4 in 1's when I was the proud owner of a Abit KT7 and was told that I should install these drivers for a kick in performance, and a kick I received. Everything was quicker across the board and the infrequent lockups vanished into thin air. Now, would Via's latest Hyperion driver set help my two Via p4x400 based chipsets squeeze a little more performance, well, that will be proven in this small writeup.

 

HYPERION ARGUMENTS


Turning your attention the Via's latest offering, I was wondering if these drivers would offer much more than what I was getting with the 4.45 variety, and pure curiosity got the better of me. I visited some forums and found the same old fight going on about the latest version and how it was affecting people computers. Some people had improvements (one yahoo claimed a 40% increase), some people claimed that there systems have slowed down, and some said that they had no difference. Now another noted was the fact that supposedly this driver release was to help improve performance on KT400 and P4X400 chipsets and improve the 8X AGP performance. Seeing that my two work computers are indeed P4X400 chipsets (Soyo P4X-400 Dragon and the Via P4PB Ultra), I decided to do a little testing. Yet, to add a little more icing to the cake, both machines were topped off with 8X AGP cards, one ATI and one Nvidia.


Would I see a performance increase? Would I get some improved benchmarking? Let's see....

 

TESTING SETUP


Trying to keep the testing as simple and understandable as possible, I used three programs.


The programs are:


PCMARK 2002
3DMARK2001SE
3DMARK2003


*Editor's Addition: The margin of error in these test suites have been taken into account.*


The two computers I tested the Hyperion 4.45 & 4.46 drivers on are:


Test Computer #1


Soyo P4X400 Dragon Platinum Edition
Intel P4 2.8Ghz 533Mhz FSB
ATI All in Wonder Radeon 9700 pro (8X AGP, DX9 Compliant)
256 Megs Samsung DDR333
Maxtor ATA-133 7200rpm 30 gig Drive
Windows 2000 Pro SP3
Via Hyperion 4.45 & 4.46 Chipset Drivers


Test Computer #2


Via P4PB Ultra
Intel 2.4Ghz 533Mhz FSB
Nvidia Geforce 4 MX480 (8X AGP, DX7 Compliant)
256 Megs Crucial DDR333
Maxtor ATA-133 7200rpm 30 gig Drive
Windows 2000 Pro SP3
Via Hyperion 4.45 & 4.46 Chipset Drivers

 

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