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Benchmark Results

System Builder Marathon: High-Cost System
By

3D Games

Everyone talks about how tough the game Crysis is on modern hardware, but our high-end system breezed through with 38.2 frames per second at a resolution of 1920x1200 and high detail settings. Cranking the system up to the "Very High" detail setting and enabling antialiasing taxed it so that the maximum playable resolution was 1280x1024.

The FPS title Prey puts only the lightest possible load on our high-end system, with an ultra-smooth 107 frames per second at the highest settings.

Supreme Commander's results were a little strange, with a "sawtooth" pattern on the charts favoring resolutions of 1024x768, 1680x1050, and 1920x1200. The pattern, though visually obvious, makes no mathematical sense. Still, the benchmark appears to be limited by CPU performance rather than graphics performance, with the highest settings showing 62 frames per second.

Unreal Tournament 3 also appears to be limited more by CPU performance than anything else, and only barely begins to dip below 100 frames per second at its highest setting. If every tester had a 30" monitor, perhaps we'd have noticed the gradual decline in FPS at resolutions higher than 1920x1200.

Warhammer marks the third game that looks like it relies more upon CPU than graphics power. The trend indicates that not even the fastest CPU is capable of feeding data at a high enough rate to satisfy an SLI pair of high-end graphics cards. If that's the case, we'd expect to see a more pronounced curve in the graph when using a system that has a high-end CPU and a lower-performance graphics solution.

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