Legit Video Card Reviews
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 Video Card Review
|Product:||GeForce GTX 680|
|Date:||Wed, Mar 21, 2012 - 08:00 AM|
|Written By:||Nathan Kirsch -|
Unigine Heaven 3.0
The 'Heaven' benchmark that uses the Unigine easily shows off the full potential of DirectX 11 graphics cards. It reveals the enchanting magic of floating islands with a tiny village hidden in the cloudy skies. With the interactive mode emerging, experience of exploring the intricate world is within reach. Through its advanced renderer, Unigine is one of the first to set precedence in showcasing the art assets with tessellation, bringing compelling visual finesse, utilizing the technology to the full extent and exhibiting the possibilities of enriching 3D gaming. The distinguishing feature of the benchmark is a hardware tessellation that is a scalable technology aimed for automatic subdivision of polygons into smaller and finer pieces so that developers can gain a more detailed look of their games almost free of charge in terms of performance. Thanks to this procedure, the elaboration of the rendered image finally approaches the boundary of veridical visual perception: the virtual reality transcends conjured by your hand.
For this benchmark we used Heaven DX11 Benchmark Version 3.0, which just came out on March 7th, 2012. We haven't run this benchmark in over a year, so it will be interesting to see how this new generation of video cards handles this benchmark. We wanted to see how the cards would do with mild settings, so we disabled AA and AF and set the Tessellation to moderate. We ran the benchmark at 2560x1600, 1920x1200 and 1280x1024 to see how the cards would perform with a wide variety of settings.
With moderate tessellation enabled and AA and AF disabled the benchmark results were very close. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 performed really better than the MSI R7970 Lighting 3GB at both 1280x1024 and 1920x1080 screen resolutions, but at an Ultra HD resolution like 2560x1600 the MSI R7970 Lighting pulls ahead just slightly.
Many feel that tessellation is one of the most important features of game titles today and in the future, so we set tessellation to extreme and maxed out the anti-aliasing at 8x and the anisotropic filtering at 16x. These are as high as you can set the tessellation and image quality settings in Heaven DX11 Benchmark v3.0, so it will really punish these cards.
As you can see performance is less than half of what it was with the previously and the performance between the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 2GB and the MSI R7970 Lighting 3GB card are much closer. Without a doubt the extra memory (frame buffer) available on the Radeon HD 7970 helps here and the MSI R7970 Lighting was able to take the performance lead in both the 1920x1080 and 2560x1600 resolution tests.
We showed NVIDIA these performance results before the launch of the GeForce GTX 680 as we were told the GTX 680 is about 4x faster for DirectX 11 tessellation than the AMD Radeon HD 7970 and we didn't see that at all in this benchmark. This is what NVIDIA had to say:
We should have a pretty comfortable lead in Heaven 2.5 and 3.0. I’m surprised we lost in your moderate tessellation testing at 25x16. Running 8xMSAA we’re likely memory bandwidth bound as Heaven isn’t a pure tessellation benchmark. It also stresses other parts of the GPU besides just tessellation.
If you run a tessellation test like tessmark or Microsoft’s SubD11 tessellation test (which both AMD and NVIDIA use when quoting tessellation perf) you’ll see that 4x difference in tessellation horsepower we’re referring to. - NVIDIA PR
We don't have the time to run every benchmark available, so we'll have to take NVIDIA's word on that one!
Next Page - Folding & LuxMark v2.0
Page 1 - Good Riddance Fermi and Hello Kepler!
Page 2 - NVIDIA GPU Boost, Adaptive VSync & TXAA
Page 3 - A Closer Look At The GeForce GTX 680
Page 4 - Taking The GeForce GTX 680 Apart
Page 5 - The Test System
Page 6 - Batman: Arkham City
Page 7 - Battlefield 3
Page 8 - Deus Ex: Human Revolution
Page 9 - DiRT 3
Page 10 - H.A.W.X. 2
Page 11 - Just Cause 2
Page 12 - Metro 2033
Page 13 - 3DMark 11
Page 14 - Unigine Heaven 3.0
Page 15 - Folding & LuxMark v2.0
Page 16 - Power Consumption
Page 17 - Temperature & Noise Testing
Page 18 - Overclocking The GeForce GTX 680
Page 19 - GeForce GTX680 Overclocked Benchmarks
Page 20 - Final Thoughts & Conclusions