Meet The 2012 Graphics Charts: How We're Testing This Year

DirectX 11 Game Benchmarks, Part 1

DirectX 11 Game Benchmarks

Introduced alongside Windows 7 back in 2009, DirectX 11 is increasingly being adopted by developers, and even some console ports like Crysis 2 benefit visually from the addition of DX 11-based improvements. In light of this, we chose DirectX 11 benchmarks that focus on the many ways Microsoft's most recent API benefits gamers and developers.

Metro 2033

Despite its age, Metro 2033 is still a tough benchmark for the latest graphics cards, especially when the quality settings are cranked up. Its successor, originally planned for this year, seems to have slipped to 2013. Consequently, this game deserves to remain in our benchmark suite.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Preset LevelResolutionSettings
Entry1280x720DirectX 11, Quality: Low, Anisotropy x8, Anti-aliasing: AAA
Performance1920x1080DirectX 11, Quality: Medium, Anisotropy x16, Anti-aliasing: MSAA x4
Extreme2560x1440DirectX 11, Quality: Very High, Anisotropy x16, Anti-aliasing: MSAA x4

Crysis 2 DirectX 11 Mode

Crysis 2 intrigues us because DirectX 11, which was added after the title's launch, benefits visual quality but negatively impacts performance. The one notable exception was the Radeon HD 7900-series cards, which actually ran better under DirectX 11 than DirectX 9. More recently, however, driver updates seem to have smoothed out the DirectX 9 performance of those cards. At our Extreme preset exclusively, we use high-res textures, which were added in a patch right next to DirectX 11 support.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Preset LevelResolutionSettings
Entry1280x720DirectX 11, Quality: High, Anti-aliasing: Off, HighRes Textures: Off
Performance1920x1080DirectX 11, Quality: Extreme, Anti-aliasing: Edge Blur, HighRes Textures: Off
Extreme2560x1440DirectX 11, Quality: Ultra, Anti-aliasing: Edge AA, HighRes Textures: On

Alien vs. Predator

For all performance categories, Alien vs. Predator's built-in benchmark yields an assessment that compromises between image quality and tessellation on one side, and overall playability and performance on the other.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Preset LevelResolutionSettings
Entry1280x720Texture Quality: 1, Anisotropy: x8, Anti-aliasing: 0, Shadow: 0, SSAO: 0Tessellation: off
Performance1920x1080Texture Quality: 2, Anisotropy: x16, Anti-aliasing: 2, Shadow: 2, SSAO: 1Tessellation: off
Extreme2560x1440Texture Quality: 3, Anisotropy: x16, Anti-aliasing: 4, Shadow: 3, SSAO: 1Tessellation: on

Our DirectX 11 benchmark discussion continues on the next page.

  • johnny_utah
    While I love the new techniques, using BITCOIN to bench GPUGPU performance instead of Folding @ Home? Um, okay.
  • Still with the bar charts? Would *love* to see scatter plots with price/score on the axes... So much more useful in picking out a card.
  • AznCracker
    Man the charts are dying to be updated. Too bad it isn't done more often since it takes a lot of work.
  • You havent added how many cheese wheels it can run in skyrim as a benchmark... wth?
  • DjEaZy
    ... i like the pile of card's @ the end of the article.... a beautiful pile...
  • pharoahhalfdead
    johnny_utahWhile I love the new techniques, using BITCOIN to bench GPUGPU performance instead of Folding @ Home? Um, okay.
    I agree. I know Tom's spends a lot of time benchmarking, but Folding@home is something that is a bit more common. I would love to see F@H in some articles.

    BTW, I appreciate all the work you guys do.
  • randomkid
    Where's the 5760x1080? In the area where I come from, 3x 1920x1080p 22" monitor cost around the same or even less than a single 2560x1440/1600 27" monitor so this is a more likely configuration among gamers.

    The 5760x1080 resolution will also push the GPU's harder than a 2560x1440/1600 could so why limit the resolution there?
  • We'll add up to 20 new boards each month until the lower end of the performance range is filled out, too.
    How far back in GPU generations are you going to test, if at all? I saw the power consumption charts and could only see GTX 500, 600 and Radeon 6000, 7000 series. I have an EVGA GTX 480 SC for two years and do like to know how it compares to the newer series of GPUs. Much appreciated.
  • Yargnit
    MMO FanYup no surprise here typical Nvidia benchmark suite fuck sakes.
    So what would YOU like to see used then? If they were trying to push Nvidia wouldn't Hawx 2 be in the suite?
  • shinym
    For Starcraft II you say "This game doesn't stress the CPU, and is thus well-suited for GPU benchmarking." Looks like you got CPU and GPU mixed up there.