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AMD vs Nvidia: Whose Driver Updates Improve Performance More?

Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands (2017, DX11)

Given its March 2017 release date, Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands was still a twinkle in Ubisoft’s eye--or at least was still in development--when GeForce GTX 1060 6GB and Radeon RX 480 were introduced.

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The game ran fine under AMD’s 16.6.2 driver, published more than eight months prior to Ghost Recon’s launch. However, it’s clear that AMD made some improvements once its software team had the game in hand. Over two years, the Radeon RX 480’s average frame rate sped up 9.6%.

Moreover, the card’s 99th percentile frame rate jumped almost 20%. Big spikes from the 16.6.2 driver in our frame time chart give way to the black and blue lines, which reflect tight frame time variance and an utter lack of micro-stutter.

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The GeForce GTX 1060 6GB’s performance doesn’t really change in Ghost Recon, even though Nvidia’s 368.95 driver preceded the game by eight months. Maybe the company’s cooperation with Ubisoft to get GameWorks effects into this title allowed it to optimize ahead of launch.

Regardless of its static performance, GeForce GTX 1060 6GB maintains a small advantage over the Radeon RX 480, despite that card’s substantial speed-up.

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Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands
Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands
Chris Angelini
Chris Angelini is an Editor Emeritus at Tom's Hardware US. He edits hardware reviews and covers high-profile CPU and GPU launches.