Benchmark Results: High Detail, PhysX On High, And A Dedicated PhysX Card
We paired a number of secondary GeForce cards with the GeForce GTX 260 in order to see what dedicated PhysX processing can provide. Let's start with the Normal PhysX setting at 1280x1024 and then at 1920x1200:
These results are very useful. Note how the average frame rate takes a large hit as resolution is increased, but the important minimum frame rate remains high. This is excellent news. Now, let's increase PhysX detail to the High setting:
The minimum frame rates stay somewhat constant, despite the change in resolution. Also note that the minimum frame rate stays fairly constant regardless of the dedicated PhysX card used, except for the GeForce 9500 GT, which is struggling a little.
What have we learned from this? Primarily, the GeForce GT 220, a card that doesn't appear to be very powerful on its own, becomes a force to be reckoned with as a dedicated PhysX processor, definitely offering the most bang for the buck when compared to more expensive GeForce models.
On a final note, while it's not officially supported as such, we have heard stories about people purchasing GeForce cards to work as dedicated PhysX GPUs when paired with Radeon graphics cards. This can only be done on Windows XP and Windows 7, as Windows Vista does not have the capability of running two graphics drivers at the same time. Keep in mind that 186 and newer GeForce driver versions will not allow for this functionality, as Nvidia has unfortunately disabled PhysX co-processing when working in tandem with a non-GeForce graphics card.