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Tom's Hardware Graphics Charts: Performance In 2014

3DMark Fire Strike And Unigine Heaven

3DMark Fire Strike

We’re including two synthetic benchmarks in our charts, even if their correlation to real-world performance is often questioned. They do serve a valid purpose, making it easier for you to reproduce our findings without trying to match the in-game sequences we run. For all of the criticism synthetics receive, they often do provide a good overview of graphics performance, independent of the platform.

The video shows the entire benchmark run for both parts.

We skip the CPU and combined metrics, since our benchmark system has an overclocked six-core CPU that's not representative of many gaming systems. The following table includes the settings we use:

Resolution1920x1080 (1080p)
SceneFire Strike
BenchmarksGraphics Test 1 and 2

Unigine Heaven 4.0

This synthetic benchmark's use of tessellation enables scalable analysis of geometry performance. In addition, it can be configured to tax shader hardware intensively.

We picked settings at 3840x2160 that allow high-end graphics cards to deliver a reasonably smooth experience. In general, all benchmarks run in full-screen mode.

3DMark, Unigine, and the rest of our benchmarks are run with each graphics card conditioned to operate at a steady load temperature.

In Heaven, we run the loop until temperature stops increasing. For the gaming benchmarks, we run the sequence (sometimes multiple times) before recording results. Furthermore, we’ve frozen all benchmarks the way they are right now; we won't be updating them. When new drivers add optimizations, we’ll re-run the numbers for as many cards as possible.

Again, here are the settings in a table:

Unigine Heaven
Run 11920x1080 (1080p)API: DirectX 11Quality: UltraTessellation: NormalAnti-aliasing: x2
Run 23840x2160 (2160p)API: DirectX 11Quality: MediumTessellation: ModerateAnti-aliasing: Off