Graphics Cards Guide
For those who've been following our reviews, take note that we've replaced our old test rig with a brand new one for 2013. Here are the new specs we'll be running with:
- Intel Core i7-3960X (3.3GHz)
- ASUS P9X79 Pro (Intel X79 chipset) Motherboard
- 4 x 2GB DDR3-1600 G.Skill Ripjaws Memory
- Seagate 7200.10 200GB SATA hard drive (OS)
- Western Digital Caviar Black 7200 RPM 1TB SATA hard drive (Benchmarks + Games)
- Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
Here's the list of cards we'll be testing.
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX Titan 6GB GDDR5 (ForceWare 314.09)
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 2GB GDDR5 (ForceWare 310.90)
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 4GB GDDR5 (ForceWare 310.90)
- AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition 3GB GDDR5 (AMD Catalyst 12.11 Beta) - OC BIOS
- AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition 6GB GDDR5 CrossFireX (2-way) (AMD Catalyst 13.1) - OC BIOS
Note 1: There's a slight discrepancy in driver versions used across all the cards, but bear with us updating of benchmarks is an ongoing process, especially on our new test rig. Despite this, the differences shoudn't be alarming as they are fairly recent releases and still paint a reasonably accurate expectation of where the new card stands among the competition.
Note 2: In our performance testing, while the GTX Titan's GPU Boost 2.0 did work on the default settings, we were unable to produce higher scores by raising the target temperature using EVGA's Precision X tool. Despite setting Temp Target to 95 degrees Celsius (the max allowed), temperature still climbed no higher than 80 (the default setting). It is possible that this is a problem with the current ForceWare drivers or EVGA Precision X tool version we are using and a future update may be required. As such, all testing on the GTX Titan was performed with GPU Boost 2.0 left at the default 80 degrees Celsius threshold. We also understand that there's a secondary check in place to factor in the power draw, but given how we've tested and what we've observed, we tend to believe it's a limitation we've faced with regards to the early drivers or the utility.
- Futuremark 3DMark 11
- Futuremark 3DMark 2013
- Unigine 4.0 "Heaven"
- Unigine "Valley" 1.0
- Battlefield: Bad Company 2
- Crysis Warhead
- Crysis 2
- Dirt 3
- Assassin's Creed 3
- Call of Duty: Black Ops 2
- Hitman: Absolution
- Far Cry 3
- Crysis 3