Battlefield 4 is one of those games that necessitates a stable GPU, making it perfect for weeding out instability in overclocks. As you can see in the graph, Gigabyte's GeForce GTX 950 Xtreme card performs marginally better than Asus' GTX 950 Strix. At this lower resolution, the card delivers excellent performance (though the GTX 960 shows why you might want more CUDA cores).
With the game set to 1920x1080, the story remains largely the same. The GeForce GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming's results are similar to Sapphire's R9 380 ITX, which we tested over the summer.
The overclocked GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming still trails the higher-end GTX 960. But with such a small lead, the higher-end board doesn't make a meaningful difference to your real-world experience.
Far Cry 4
The numbers in Far Cry 4 are peculiar. We sort our graphs by average frame rate, which typically yields a proportionate illustration. In this case, the R7 370 and R9 380 rank higher than the GTX 950. But a quick glance at the minimum frame rates show that AMD has a harder time through one section of our benchmark scenario.
When you consider those minimum frame rates, the GeForce GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming becomes a more compelling competitor. At 1366x768, Gigabyte's offering again outperforms Asus' GTX 950 Strix, never dipping below 53 FPS. Again, the margin between it and Zotac's GTX 960 is very small.
With the resolution increased to 1920x1080, Far Cry 4 proves to be a handful for the GTX 950. Gigabyte's board still maintains a small lead over Asus' GTX 950 Strix, though the R7 370 from XFX is a bit quicker.
Grand Theft Auto V
As you can see, GTA V loves the GTX 950 at 1366x768. The delta between both samples and the GTX 960 is almost negligible. Interestingly, with the GPU at its stock clock rate, the minimum frame rate is actually 7 FPS than our overclocked configuration, and even 6 FPS faster than the GTX 960.
Testing GTA V at 1080p shows the gap between GeForce GTX 950 and 960 widen. It's the difference between maintaining at least 60 FPS and dipping just under that result. Gigabyte's GeForce GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming maintains a lead over Asus' offering, but only by a bit. And overclocking the card yields negligible improvements.
Metro: Last Light
Running Metro: Last Light at 1366x768 proved to be a breeze for the GTX 950, and once again Gigabyte's Xtreme Gaming card outperforms Asus' Strix.
The gap between them is a somewhat notable four to seven frames per second, which widens after overclocking. In fact, the overclocked GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming is more comparable to the GeForce GTX 960.
The results at 1080p tell a similar story. In this test, Asus' GTX 950 struggles to maintain an average frame rate above 60, falling as low as the high 30s. Gigabyte's GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming, on the other hand, never dips below 40 and keeps its average north of 60.
Middle-Earth: Shadow Of Mordor
The GTX 950 is a great match for Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor at 1344x756. At no point does the frame rate drop below 60 FPS, and it's typically found close to 90 FPS. Again, Gigabyte's card manages to outperform Asus'.
Boosting the resolution to 1080p taxes the GeForce GTX 950s. While both cards average roughly 60 frames per second, they also drop as low as 45 FPS at times. That's still more than playable. However, some gamers will want to adopt less grueling detail settings.
Gigabyte's GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming outperforms Asus' GTX 950 in Tomb Raider. Even at 1366x768, though, the frame rate dips into the low 40s. The Ultra preset is simply too demanding for a mainstream-class GPU. Nvidia's GeForce GTX 960 fares somewhat better, but not enough to make a meaningful difference.
With the frame rates as low as they are at 1366x768, it's no surprise that 1920x1080 is too taxing for these cards at the quality preset we used. You'll want to adjust down, trading graphics details for higher frame rates.
Once again, Gigabyte maintains a marginal lead over the Asus Strix board. It's only unfortunate that the overclocked settings aren't enough to catch the 960, which wields extra CUDA cores.