Intel CPU Scaling on an AMD Radeon HD 7950 Video CardMon, Mar 19, 2012 - 12:00 AM
Mass Effect 3
Not everyone will survive. An ancient alien race, known only as “Reapers”, has launched an all-out invasion leaving nothing but a trail of destruction in their wake. Earth has been taken, the galaxy is on the verge of total annihilation, and you are the only one who can stop them. The price of failure is extinction. You are Commander Shepard, a character that you can forge in your own image. You determine how events will play out, which planets to explore, and whom to form alliances with as you rally a force to eliminate the Reaper threat once and for all. How you wage this war is completely up to you: go into combat with guns blazing or use cover to plan a more tactical assault. Utilize your squad to full effect or take a lone wolf approach. Rain death from a distance or go toe–to-toe with enemies using devastating melee attacks. Mass Effect 3 will react to each decision you make as you play through a truly unique experience of your own creation. The war for Earth has begun, decide how it ends.
The graphics settings in Mass Effect 3 are pretty limited. We had Antialiasing and Dynamic Shadows both enabled. In order to disable the VSync we edited the configuration file and added the lines; ‘UseVsync=False’ and ‘SmoothFramerate=False’. If you want to edit your configuration file you can find it at ‘C:Usersyour usernameDocumentsBioWareMass Effect 3BIOGameConfigGamerSettings.ini’.
Benchmark Results: Mass Effect 3 gives us a great idea of the performance scaling across the various processors. The entry level Intel Pentium G620 was able to average 126.078 frames per second which is still more than enough to play Mass Effect 3 while enjoying all of the graphical eye candy. Jumping all the way to our top processor, the Intel Core i7 2600K was able to average 162.924 frames per second. Each of the processors in between saw a jump in performance. The largest jump in performance was between the Intel core i3 2120 and the Intel Core i5 2500K. The likely reason for this is the jump from a two core four thread processor to a processor to four cores.
We wanted to see what kind of CPU usage we were getting in Mass Effect 3 so we fired the game up in a window and opened up the task manager. With the Intel Core i7 2600K we were seeing activity on only four of the eight processing threads and was hovering right around 20% CPU usage.
Looking at the CPU usage with the Intel Pentium G620 we can see that we are getting much higher CPU utilization from the processor and are hovering in the 80-90% range. Between the higher processor frequencies and the additional cores and threads of some of our processors we can see that Mass Effect 3 does benefit from the faster processors. Though all of the processors gave us great and very playable framerates.