Video Demos, Test System And Benchmark Setup
We've always wanted to show you exactly what we see when we're comparing the output of different graphics cards. The problem was that a lossless capture at 60 Hz and 1920x1080 yields a colossal video file that's too large to download, really. On the other hand, putting the same file on YouTube cut its frame rate to 30 FPS, conveying half of the information from our original capture. Fortunately, we have a workaround thanks to YouTube's HTML5 trial. Enable this beta feature by going to this page and clicking the "Join HTML5 Trial" button:
Once you're in, close and relaunch your Web browser. You should now have access to HTML5-based speed controls through the settings button on the bottom-right of the video playback window:
We encoded our results at half-speed. So, at the YouTube "normal" speed setting (30 FPS), you can scrutinize the result at slower-than-real-time and get a great sense of the differences. Then, if you want to see the output as it appears when we're testing, set the speed to 2x (60 FPS). Thanks to this technique, we have a powerful way to demonstrate the experience at 60 Hz, and you're able to see what we do when we're creating our benchmark results.
First, a few suggestions about the HTML5 trial. Make sure that the video loads completely before playing it back at 2x. This naturally requires more bandwidth, and you don't want hiccups in the stream affecting your perception of the capture. Also, we've seen cases where YouTube doesn't register a speed setting change until the page is reloaded. Finally, we recommend watching the video at normal speed before speeding it up. It's much easier to see differences in frame rate smoothness this way.
You'll notice that we're using the Catalyst 13.6 Beta 2 driver instead of Catalyst 13.8 Beta, which adds a frame pacing feature for smoother, more consistent output. AMD tells us that the new driver does not affect Dual Graphics configurations. It only works with multiple discrete GPUs. Rest assured that the configuration we're presenting is as up to date as possible.
|CPU||AMD A10-6800K (Richland) 4.1 GHz Base, 4.4 GHz Turbo Core w/ integrated Radeon HD 8670D (844 MHz)|
|Motherboard||ASRock FM2A85X, Socket FM2, Chipset: AMD A85|
|Networking||On-Board Gigabit LAN controller|
|Memory||AMD Gamer Series Memory, 2 x 4 GB, 1866 MT/s, CL 13-13-13-34|
|Graphics||AMD Radeon HD 6670 DDR3800 MHz GPU, 1 GB GDDR5 at 800 MHz (1600 MHz effective)|
|Hard Drive||Western Digital Caviar Black 750 GB 7200 RPM, 32 MB Cache, SATA 3Gb/s|
|Power||ePower EP-1200E10-T2 1200 W ATX12V, EPS12V|
|Software and Drivers|
|Operating System||Microsoft Windows 8 Pro x64|
|Graphics Drivers||AMD Catalyst 13.6 Beta 2|
|Metro: Last Light||Version 188.8.131.52, DirectX 10, Built-in Benchmark|
|The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim||Version 1.6.89.06, Version 1.5.26.05, 25-Sec. Fraps|
|Tomb Raider||Version 1.04, Custom THG Benchmark, 60-Sec. Fraps|
|F1 2012||Version 1.2, Direct X 11, Built-in Benchmark, 60-Sec. Fraps|
|BioShock Infinite||Version 1.0.1441711, Built-in Benchmark, Fraps|
|Company Of Heroes 2||Version 184.108.40.20604, Built-in Benchmark, Fraps|