Enumeration of anti-viral CD8(+) T cells to make comparisons between mice, viruses and vaccines is a frequently used approach, but controversy persists as to the most appropriate methods. Use of peptide-MHC tetramers (or variants) and intracellular staining for cytokines, in particular IFNγ, after a short ex vivo stimulation are now common, as are a variety of cytotoxicity assays, but few direct comparisons have been made. It has been argued that use of tetramers leads to the counting of non-functional T cells and that measurement of single cytokines will fail to identify cells with alternative functions. Further, the linear range of these methods has not been tested and this is required to give confidence that relative quantifications can be compared across samples. Here we show for two acute virus infections and CD8(+) T cells activated in vitro that DimerX (a tetramer variant) and intracellular staining for IFNγ, alone or in combination with CD107 to detect degranulation, gave comparable results at the peak of the response.