Game Benchmarks: NFS: Carbon
This edition of the Need for Speed series was released at the end of October 2006 and it took the ATI Radeon X1900-series graphics cards to run it well with all options, such as motion blur, turned up. We use Fraps to record frame rates of a two lap race of Salizar Street. All details were set to the maximum including motion blur, and we tested in the swingman view, which seems to be the most demanding. All tests were run three times with consistent results, and the median performance numbers are used for the charts.
In Need for Speed Carbon, we again see no benefit from having a dual-core processor. At lower resolutions, the A64 4000+ was able to outpace the X2 4200+ in both minimum and average FPS and the high-clocked X2 5600+ was out in the lead by a good margin. Once we hit 1600x1200, things became GPU limited and all three processors offered about the same performance and smooth game play.
Enabling 4xAA, we put more demand on the GPU. We see the same overall order in performance with the three CPUs, but with closer results at 1280x1024 this time, but again as we turned up the resolution, all three CPUs provided about the same game play performance. Our stock-clocked XFX 8800 GS was no longer able to stay above 30 FPS during the whole race at 1600x1200 as we experienced a minimum of 26-27 FPS with each CPU. But while some slowdowns were noticeable, it was easily playable and lap times were not affected.