What to Look For, Test Setup
We take another trip down the road of Frame Rating with the GeForce GTX 660 Ti and the Radeon HD 7950.
Because of the complexity and sheer amount of data we have gathered using our Frame Rating performance methodology, we are breaking it up into several articles that each feature different GPU comparisons. Here is the schedule:
- 3/27: Frame Rating Dissected: Full Details on Capture-based Graphics Performance Testing
- 3/27: Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition vs GeForce GTX 680 (Single and Dual GPU)
- 3/30: AMD Radeon HD 7990 vs GeForce GTX 690 vs GeForce GTX Titan
- 4/2: Radeon HD 7950 vs GeForce GTX 660 Ti (Single and Dual GPU)
- 4/5: Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition vs GeForce GTX 660 (Single and Dual GPU)
We are back again with another edition of our continued reveal of data from the capture-based Frame Rating GPU performance methods. In this third segment we are moving on down the product stack to the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 Ti and the AMD Radeon HD 7950 – both cards that fall into a similar price range.
I have gotten many questions about why we are using the cards in each comparison and the answer is pretty straight forward: pricing. In our first article we looked at the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition and the GeForce GTX 680 while in the second we compared the Radeon HD 7990 (HD 7970s in CrossFire), the GeForce GTX 690 and the GeForce GTX Titan. This time around we have the GeForce GTX 660 Ti ($289 on Newegg.com) and the Radeon HD 7950 ($299 on Newegg.com) but we did not include the GeForce GTX 670 because it sits much higher at $359 or so. I know some of you are going to be disappointed that it isn't in here, but I promise we'll see it again in a future piece!
If you are just joining this article series today, you have missed a lot! If nothing else you should read our initial full release article that details everything about the Frame Rating methodology and why we are making this change to begin with. In short, we are moving away from using FRAPS for average frame rates or even frame times and instead are using a secondary hardware capture system to record all the frames of our game play as they would be displayed to the gamer, then doing post-process analyzation on that recorded file to measure real world performance.
Because FRAPS measures frame times at a different point in the game pipeline (closer to the game engine) its results can vary dramatically from what is presented to the end user on their display. Frame Rating solves that problem by recording video through a dual-link DVI capture card that emulates a monitor to the testing system and by simply applying a unique overlay color on each produced frame from the game, we can gather a new kind of information that tells a very unique story.
The capture card that makes all of this work possible.
I don't want to spend too much time on this part of the story here as I already wrote a solid 16,000 words on the topic in our first article and I think you'll really find the results fascinating. So, please check out my first article on the topic if you have any questions before diving into these results today!
|Test System Setup
|Intel Core i7-3960X Sandy Bridge-E
|ASUS P9X79 Deluxe
|Corsair Dominator DDR3-1600 16GB
|OCZ Agility 4 256GB SSD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB
AMD Radeon HD 7950 3GB
AMD: 13.2 beta 7
NVIDIA: 314.07 beta
|Windows 8 Pro x64
On to the results!