2D Performance – Batman and Dirt 2
Yesterday we looked at how the GeForce GTX 480s stood up to multi-monitor gaming with NVIDIA Surround and 3D Vision Surround. Today we do the same but with GTX 470s in the mix offering a lower priced option for consumers looking to move into the wild world of triple-monitors!
A Small Update
Yesterday we showed you NVIDIA Surround and 3D Vision Surround technology as demonstrated by a pair of GeForce GTX 480 graphics cards. For whatever reason, NVIDIA really only wanted us to test, benchmark and write about our experience with the top-shelf cards – likely to make sure we had the best possible experience for 3D Vision testing. Now with that out of the way we are going to explore Surround performance and experiences with other GPU combinations from NVIDIA, starting with the GTX 470.
If you read my review from yesterday, which has a TON more detail on the technology and how it compares to AMD’s Eyefinity multi-display gaming then you already have an idea why we are writing this piece on the GTX 470 numbers today: the SLI requirement of Surround adds cost to a three display gaming rig but using 470s rather than 480s results in a much better price / performance comparison. Each GTX 470 is about $160 less than a GTX 480 and with two cards, this adds up to a solid savings.
Testing was done identically to our first NVIDIA Surround review, at resolutions of 5760×1080 and 4800×900 (for Metro 2033), so we aren’t going to rehash much here; check out the link above for the necessary details you might have missed. In this instance we are going to be comparing the GTX 470 SLI NVIDIA Surround results with the single HD 5870, HD 5870s in CrossFire and a single HD 5970.
- Testing Configuration
- ASUS P6T6 WS Revolution X58 + nForce 200
- Intel Core i7-965 @ 3.33 GHz
- 3 x 2GB Corsair DDR3-1333 MHz
- Intel X25-M G2 160GB SSD
- PC Power and Cooling 1200w Turbo Cool PSU
- NVIDIA Driver version: 258.61
- ATI Driver version: 10.6 + CrossFire X update
- Monitors: 3 x Acer 235HZ 120 Hz 3D-ready 1920×1080
For now, let’s jump into the benchmarks!
Batman: Arkham Asylum (DirectX 9)
One of the best received gaming titles on both console and PC for 2009, Batman: Arkham Asylum is an impressive game both visually and in terms of design.
Batman: Arkham Asylum Test Settings
One interesting note: Batman (Bruce Wayne, personally) doesn’t allow setting AA levels in-game for AMD graphics card but DOES for NVIDIA GPUs. We instead enabled AA in the AMD Catalyst Control Panel where noted. This obviously creates a performance discrepancy but unfortunately this is what gamers today are left with.
DiRT 2 (DirectX 11)
DiRT 2 is a great rally and off-road racing game that was released on all the major consoles as well as the PC just this past winter. DiRT 2 was the first major PC title to implement DirectX 11 features and image quality enhancements and thus makes a great choice for one of our first NVIDIA versus AMD DX11 comparisons.
The gap is definitely closer here but the pair of GTX 470s is faster than the pair of HD 5870s in CrossFire or the single HD 5970 at our 5760×1080 surround gaming resolution.