Core i5, Core i7, CrossFire, And SLI: Gaming Paradise, Redux?

Benchmark Results: Grand Theft Auto 4

We’ve fielded a lot of feedback email asking for Grand Theft Auto 4 results. The game often proves to be fairly processor-dependent, but performance generally only ranges between 40 and 60 frames per second.

At 1680x1050, we can see that this one prefers Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 285—especially on the Core 2 Quad platform, where ATI falls behind. The Core i5/Corei7s and AMD’s Phenom II X4 deliver similar performance otherwise. SLI is the only multi-card technology that exhibits a gain of any sort; CrossFire actually hurts performance.

Swap over to a single Radeon HD 4870 X2 and the three Nehalem-based CPUs take a lead, even over the Phenom II.

When you up the resolution, a single Radeon HD 4870 X2 delivers even results across our five test beds. Again, CrossFire does nothing positive for performance. A single GeForce GTX 285, on the other hand, does gain a fair bit of performance from a second card. With just one installed, you really won’t be able to tell the difference between Core i7, Core i5, or Phenom II, though.