Tag Archives: The Witcher 3

Watch Apple M1 Run The Witcher 3 On CrossOver 20!

Apple M1 Gaming : Watch It Run The Witcher 3!

Windows gaming on the ARM-based Apple M1 is possible!

Watch how well the Apple M1 runs The Witcher 3 using CrossOver 20!

 

Apple M1 Gaming : Watch It Run The Witcher 3 On CrossOver 20!

AppleGamers successfully ran The Witcher 3 on CrossOver 20, using the 2020 Apple MacBook Pro with the new ARM-based Apple M1 SoC.

Here was their recorded gameplay of The Witcher 3 at the 1080p resolution, with the Medium graphics and post-processing presets, and VSync enabled.

They could not get the FPS counter to work, but it looks smooth and very playable, albeit with some visual artefacts.

Basically – Apple M1 gaming is not only possible, it is possible to play Windows games!

 

Windows Gaming On Apple M1 : Rosetta 2 + Windows API Translation!

That quick gameplay showcase of The Witcher 3 shows that Windows gaming is possible on the Apple M1.

The ability to run The Witcher 3 on CrossOver 20, and at such playable frame rates, is important for two reasons.

Windows App Compatibility

The Witcher 3 is a 64-bit Windows-only game, so you wouldn’t expect it to run well on the ARM-based Apple M1, right?

Running it on the Apple M1 involves translating Windows API calls using CrossOver, and then translating x86 instructions to ARM instructions using Rossetta 2.

Yet it not only worked, it ran pretty well on the Apple M1!

Performance

While AppleGamers was not able to obtain a frame rate, The Witcher 3 appears to run pretty well at the 1080p resolution.

That shows that the Apple M1’s integrated 8-core GPU is fast, and will have no problem handling native ARM games at 1080p, and likely 1440p as well.

 

Apple M1 : A Quick Primer

The Apple M1 is the first ARM-based SoC (System on a Chip) designed by Apple for use in Mac computers.

Packing 16 billion transistors, it is the first chip to be manufactured on the new 5 nm TSMC process technology.

It comes with 4 high-performance Firestorm CPU cores, 4 power-efficient Icestorm cores, an 8-core GPU, and a 16-core Neural Engine.

As the M1 is based on the ARM architecture, you can natively run iPhone and iPad apps on it. However, existing macOS apps will have to be ported over, or translated on-the-fly using Rosetta 2.

It is currently available in these Apple Mac computers :

  • 2020 MacBook Air : US | UK | AU | MY | SG
  • 2020 MacBook Pro 13-inch : US | UK | AU | MY | SG
  • 2020 Mac mini : US | UK | AU | MY | SG

 

Recommended Reading

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The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition Review

As the drumbeats of the AMD Vega graphics cards got louder and louder, NVIDIA introduced their ultimate Pascal-based gaming graphics card – the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti – to take them on. What’s astounding is that the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti is really a faster variant of the NVIDIA TITAN X at a massive discount!

Read our review of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition graphics card, and find out why we think it deserves our coveted Editor’s Choice Award!

Updated @ 2017-11-01 : Revamped the entire review, and added new benchmark results comparing the GeForce GTX 1070 Ti against the new AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 and Vega 56 graphics cards, as well as the Radeon RX 580.

Originally posted @ 2017-05-17

 

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Specifications Comparison

This table compares the specifications of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) against the TITAN X (Pascal) and the previous-generation GeForce GTX 980 Ti.

SpecificationsNVIDIA GeForce GTX TITAN XNVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 TiNVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti
GPUNVIDIA GP102NVIDIA GP102NVIDIA GM200
CUDA Cores358435842816
Textures Per Clock224224176
Pixels Per Clock968896
Base Clock Speed1417 MHz1480 MHz1000 MHz
Boost Clock Speed1531 MHz1582 MHz1075 MHz
Texture Fillrate317.4~342.9 GT/s331.5~354.4 GT/s176.0~189.2 GT/s
Pixel Fillrate136.0~147.0 GP/s130.2~139.2 GP/s96.0~104.5 GP/s
Graphics Memory12 GB GDDR5X11 GB GDDR5X6 GB GDDR5
Graphics Memory Bus Width384-bit352-bit384-bit
Graphics Memory Speed1250 MHz1375 MHz1753 MHz
Graphics Memory Bandwidth480 GB/s484 GB/s337 GB/s
TDP250 W250 W250 W
Launch Prices$1,200$699 (Founder's Edition)$649

For more specifications, please take a look at our Desktop Graphics Card Comparison Guide.

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Unboxing The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti

This is our video showing the unboxing of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition graphics card (Price Check). This is exactly what you can expect if you purchase the Founders Edition card from NVIDIA.

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition (Price Check) comes in a really nice cardboard box that doubles as a display stand. Not that anyone would actually leave the card there just for display!

Inside the box, you will find the following items :

  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition graphics card (Price Check)
  • DisplayPort to DVI dongle / adaptor
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Quick Start Guide
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Support Guide
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti case badge

Next Page > The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Up Close, Thermal Output & Noise Level

 

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The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Up Close

In this video, we are going to take a quick look at the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition graphics card (Price Check), and its faceted die-cast aluminium cooler.

Here are close-up pictures of the various aspects of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition graphics card (Price Check).

Unlike the GeForce GTX 1070 or GeForce GTX 1060, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti does not come with any dual-linked DVI port. It only has three DisplayPort 1.4 and one HDMI 2.0b ports. That’s where the DisplayPort to DVI adaptor comes in.

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) has a TDP of 250 W, and requires both 8-pin and a 6-pin PCI Express power cables. It also supports the SLI HB (High Bandwidth) bridge for two-way SLI pairing.

 

Founder’s Edition Advantage

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The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition (Price Check) was designed to be the ultimate expression of NVIDIA’s gaming vision. Hence, they crafted it with premium materials and components, including a faceted die-cast aluminium-framed shroud for strength, rigidity and looks.

Aesthetics aside, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition comes with an improved cooler built around a radial fan and an improved aluminium heatsink. The new heatsink features vapour chamber cooling and has 2x the surface area.

It also boasts a 7-phase power design with 14 high-efficiency dual FETs for both GPU and memory power supplies. Coupled with a low-impedance power delivery network and custom voltage regulators, they deliver better power efficiency and overclocking headroom.

 

The Thermal Output

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) uses the NVIDIA GP102 GPU, which is fabricated on the 16 nm FinFET process. Thanks to the more efficient FinFET process, and the new NVIDIA Pascal architecture which is designed for power efficiency, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti has a TDP (Thermal Design Power) of just 250 W.

We recorded the peak exhaust temperature of the GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition, and compared it to the Radeon RX Vega 64 (Price Check) and Vega 56 (Price Check) graphics cards, as well as the older GeForce GTX 1070, GeForce GTX 1060 and Radeon RX 580 graphics cards.

Note that these are not the recorded temperatures, but how much hotter the exhaust air is above ambient temperature.

Despite having a 15% lower TDP than the AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 (Price Check), the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti is a cooler-running card, producing 2.8°C cooler exhaust air than the previous-generation GeForce GTX 980 Ti graphics card. In fact, its peak exhaust temperature was just 2.6°C hotter than the exhaust air from the Vega 56 (Price Check) graphics card.

 

The Noise Level

Of course, the lower exhaust temperature might be due to a more powerful, and therefore, noisier, fan. Let’s see how noisy the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition fan really is…

In the video above, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition (Price Check) was recorded while it was running the 3D Mark Time Spy benchmark. As you can hear, the fan spools up quite a bit at times, but it is still quieter than the Vega 64 (Price Check).

Next Page > Benchmarking Notes, The 3DMark Benchmark Results

 

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Benchmarking Notes

Our graphics benchmarking test bed has the following specifications :

Operating System : Microsoft Windows 10 64-bit

Processor : AMD Ryzen 7 1800X processor running at 3.6 GHz

Motherboard : AORUS AX370-Gaming 5

Memory : 16 GB Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4-3000 memory (dual-channel)

Storage : 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD

Monitor : Dell P2415Q Ultra HD Monitor

We used the GeForce driver 385.41 for the NVIDIA graphics cards, and Radeon Software 17.9.1 for the AMD graphics cards.

 

3DMark DirectX 12 Benchmark (2560 x 1440)

3DMark Time Spy is the DirectX 12 benchmark in 3DMark. It supports new API features like asynchronous compute, explicit multi-adapter, and multi-threading.

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition (Price Check) did very well in this DirectX 12 benchmark. It was 35% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64 (Price Check), 54% faster than the Vega 56 (Price Check), and 64% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070!

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3DMark (1920 x 1080)

For Direct 11 performance, we started testing the graphics cards using 3DMark at the entry-level gaming resolution – 1920 x 1080.

Due to the relatively low resolution, this is a CPU-limited test for many high-end graphics cards. Even so, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti did well, delivering scores that were 26% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 43% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070, and 58% faster than the Vega 56.

 

3DMark (2560 x 1440)

We then took 3DMark up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. Let’s take a look at the results!

The GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) pulled away with the higher resolution. At 1440p, it was 30% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 48% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56, and 64% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070.

 

3DMark (3840 x 2160)

This is torture, even for the new AMD Vega 64 and Vega 56 graphics cards, but this is definitely the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti’s domain!

At this resolution, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) was 28% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 45% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56, and 63% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070.

Next Page > Ashes of the Singularity & Total War: Warhammer Benchmark Results

 

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Ashes of the Singularity (1920 x 1080)

We tested Ashes of the Singularity in the DirectX 12 mode, which supports the Asynchronous Compute feature. We started with the full HD resolution.

At this resolution, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) was 3.3% slower than the Radeon RX Vega 56 (Price Check), and 4.5% slower than the Vega 64 (Price Check). The two AMD Vega cards have a big advantage in AOTS, thanks to its support for Asynchronous Compute.

 

Ashes of the Singularity (2560 x 1440)

We then took Ashes of the Singularity up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. Let’s see how the cards fare now…

At 1440p, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) was virtually equal to the AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 in performance, and just 2.5% faster than the Vega 56.

 

Ashes of the Singularity (3840 x 2160)

Finally, let’s see how the cards perform with Ashes of the Singularity running at the Ultra HD resolution of 3840 x 2160.

Only at the 4K resolution did the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti pull away from the two AMD Vega cards. Even so, it was just 4% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, and 16% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56. It completely outclassed the GeForce GTX 1060 and the Radeon RX 580, beating both by 75%!

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Warhammer (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

All six graphics cards were so fast, they were CPU-limited at this resolution. But we can already see that support for Asynchronous Compute gave the new AMD Vega cards a major performance advantage. They actually beat the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti by 6-8%!

 

Warhammer (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

At the 1440p resolution, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti pulled just ahead of the Radeon RX Vega 56 (Price Check), beating it by 3.3%. The AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 (Price Check) was faster, but the performance gap dropped to just 3%.

 

Warhammer (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

Only at this 4K resolution did the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) show its true mettle. Suddenly, it was 41% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 60% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56, and 65% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070.

It was also the only graphics card to deliver an average frame rate at or above 60 fps. If you want to play Warhammer at 4K in Ultra quality, this is definitely the card to use!

Next Page > The Witcher 3 & For Honor Benchmark Results

 

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The Witcher 3 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) was really fast, delivering average frame rates in excess of 150 fps! This made it 37% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64 (Price Check), 55% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56 (Price Check), and 61% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070.

 

The Witcher 3 (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

All the cards took a massive hit in frame rate with the resolution boost to 1440p. But the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti was the only card capable of delivering an average frame rate in excess of 100 fps. In fact, its minimum frame rate was higher than the average frame rate of all the other cards in the comparison!

At this resolution, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti was 48% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 65% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56, and 71% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070.

 

The Witcher 3 (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

The 4K resolution in The Witcher 3 is really tough on graphics cards, virtually halving their frame rates. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) remained strong though. It was the only card to deliver an average frame rate in excess of 60 fps at this resolution.

Astoundingly, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti was 53% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 72% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56, and 76% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070 at this resolution.

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For Honor (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by For Honor‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

Even at 1080p, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) delivered eye-popping results, with an average frame rate of 170 fps. Its minimum frame rate was actually higher than the average frame rate of the other graphics cards in this test!

At this resolution, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti was 39% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64 (Price Check), 58% faster than both Radeon RX Vega 56 (Price Check) and GeForce GTX 1070.

 

For Honor (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by For Honor‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

At this resolution, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti was the only card to achieve an average frame rate in excess of 100 fps. It was 43% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 63% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56, and 68% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070.

 

For Honor (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by For Honor‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

The 4K resolution in For Honor is a real frame rate killer. Even the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti was not able to deliver an average frame rate of 60 fps, although it came close. In fact, it is the only graphics card you can consider if you want to play For Honor at the 4K resolution.

At this resolution, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) was 48% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 66% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56, and 74% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070.

Next Page > Mass Effect: Andromeda Benchmark Results, Our Verdict & Award

 

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Mass Effect: Andromeda (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Mass Effect: Andromeda.

At this entry-level gaming resolution, all six cards did well, delivering average frame rates far in excess of 60 fps. Notably, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check), GeForce GTX 1070, Radeon RX Vega 64 (Price Check), and Radeon RX Vega 56 (Price Check) are so fast, their frame rates never dropped below 60 fps.

Thanks to Asynchronous Compute and the CPU limit at this resolution, the AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 was 7% faster than the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti. Even the much cheaper Radeon RX Vega 56 was just 4% slower than the GTX 1080 Ti.

 

Mass Effect: Andromeda (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Mass Effect: Andromeda.

With the jump in resolution, every graphics card took a massive hit in their frame rates. But the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) registered only a slight dip in frame rate. This allowed it to overtake the Radeon RX Vega 64.

At this resolution, it was 26% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 35% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56, and 44% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070.

 

Mass Effect: Andromeda (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Mass Effect: Andromeda.

When the resolution was increased to 4K, even the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) took a large hit in its frame rate. Even so, it managed to deliver an average frame rate just shy of 60 fps.

At this extremely high resolution, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti was 48% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 63% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56, and 72% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070.

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Our Verdict & Award

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) is the ultimate desktop gaming graphics card you can buy today.

Built on the NVIDIA GP102 GPU, it is actually a faster variant of the NVIDIA TITAN X. Both the TITAN X and the newer TITAN Xp are US$ 1,200 cards designed for deep learning and machine learning. The GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, on the other hand, is meant for gaming, and it has no real competition.

As our benchmark results show, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti is in a class of its own when it comes to 4K gaming. At that resolution, it was, on average, 38% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 64, 55% faster than the Radeon RX Vega 56, and 63% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070.

In most games, it will deliver average frame rates in excess 60 fps even at the 4K resolution of 3840 x 2160. It does so well at 4K gaming that it would be a real shame if you don’t pair it with a 4K Ultra HD monitor.

Thanks to the NVIDIA Pascal architecture and the 16 nm FinFET fabrication technology, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti was not just much faster than its predecessor (the GeForce GTX 980 Ti), it actually ran cooler and quieter. Surprisingly, it also used less power and produced less heat than the AMD Radeon RX Vega 64, which was fabricated on the smaller 14 nm FinFET process.

What is probably most amazing though is the value proposition. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) is actually faster than the NVIDIA TITAN X, but costs just over half as much. Of course, this is part of NVIDIA’s price rationalisation, designed to make their cards more competitive against the AMD Vega onslaught.

For its unchallenged performance lead and greatly improved value proposition, we think the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Price Check) deserves our Editor’s Choice Award. If 4K gaming is what you are aiming for, you can’t go wrong with this card! Great job, NVIDIA!

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AMD Radeon RX 580 Performance Comparison

The gaming enthusiast community may be eagerly waiting for AMD Vega to arrive, but AMD breathed life into the AMD Polaris microarchitecture with a refreshed line-up, which they called the AMD Radeon RX 500 Series. Headlined by the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon), the Polaris Refined series is basically an overclocked version of the Radeon RX 400 series.

AMD is pitching the Radeon RX 500 Series as a great upgrade option for gamers with 3 years or older systems, with the introduction of 27 new graphics cards. But just how much faster is the new Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) compared to its predecessor, the Radeon RX 480, and the NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards? Let’s find out in this performance comparison!

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Radeon RX 580 Specification Comparison

Here are the specifications of the five graphics cards in this performance comparison :

SpecificationsGeForce GTX 1050 TiRadeon RX 480Radeon RX 580GeForce GTX 1060GeForce GTX 1070
Texture Units4814414480120
ROPs3232324864
Core Speed1290 MHz1120 MHz1257 MHz1506 MHz1506 MHz
Boost Speed1392 MHz1266 MHz1340 MHz1708 MHz1683 MHz
Texture Fill Rate (Max)61.9 GT/s182.3 GT/s193.0 GT/s136.6 GT/s202.0 GT/s
Pixel Fill Rate (Max)44.5 GP/s40.5 GP/s42.9 GP/s82.0 GP/s107.7 GP/s
Memory Bus Width128-bits256-bits256-bits192-bits256-bits
Graphics Memory4 GB GDDR58 GB GDDR58 GB GDDR56 GB GDDR58 GB GDDR5
Memory Speed1752 MHz1750 MHz2000 MHz2000 MHz2000 MHz
Memory Bandwidth112 GB/s224 GB/s256 GB/s192 GB/s256 GB/s
TDP75 W150 W185 W120 W150 W

 

Further Reading On The Radeon RX 500 Series

 

Further Reading On AMD Vega

Next Page > Benchmarking Notes, 3DMark Benchmark Results

 

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Benchmarking Notes

Our graphics benchmarking test bed has the following specifications :

Operating System : Microsoft Windows 10 64-bit

Processor : AMD Ryzen 7 1800X processor running at 3.6 GHz

Motherboard : AORUS AX370-Gaming 5

Memory : 16 GB Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4-3000 memory (dual-channel)

Storage : 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD

Monitor : Dell P2415Q Ultra HD Monitor

We used the GeForce driver 382.05 for the NVIDIA graphics cards, and Radeon Software 17.5.1 for the AMD graphics cards.

Note that we do not actually have any Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) graphics card. We simulated the Radeon RX 580 by overclocking the Radeon RX 480 graphics card according to AMD’s specifications for the Radeon RX 580.

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3DMark DirectX 12 Benchmark (2560 x 1440)

3DMark Time Spy is the DirectX 12 benchmark in 3DMark. It supports new API features like asynchronous compute, explicit multi-adapter, and multi-threading.

The AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was just 1% faster than the Radeon RX 480 in this DirectX 12 benchmark. It was 69% to 76% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti, and just 3% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

3DMark (1920 x 1080)

For Direct 11 performance, we started testing the graphics cards using 3DMark at the entry-level gaming resolution – 1920 x 1080.

At this resolution, the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was virtually neck-to-neck with the GeForce GTX 1060. It was 62% to 69% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti.

 

3DMark (2560 x 1440)

We then took 3DMark up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. Let’s take a look at the results!

At this higher resolution, the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was about 1.5% faster than the Radeon RX 480. With its much higher pixel fillrate, the GeForce GTX 1060 pulled away with a 6% average performance advantage.

 

3DMark (3840 x 2160)

This is torture, even for the GeForce GTX 1070!

At this resolution, the GeForce GTX 1060 was still 5% to 7% faster than the Radeon RX 580 (Amazon), which was itself 61% to 65% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti.

Next Page > Ashes of the Singularity & Total War: Warhammer Benchmark Results

 

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Ashes of the Singularity (1920 x 1080)

We tested Ashes of the Singularity in the DirectX 12 mode, which supports the Asynchronous Compute feature. We started with the full HD resolution.

The AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was just 1% faster than the Radeon RX 480, and 3.7% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

Ashes of the Singularity (2560 x 1440)

We then took Ashes of the Singularity up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. Let’s see how the cards fare now…

At this higher resolution, the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was 1.5% faster than the Radeon RX 480, and 2.3% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060. It was also 63% to 70% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti.

 

Ashes of the Singularity (3840 x 2160)

Finally, let’s see how the cards perform with Ashes of the Singularity running at the Ultra HD resolution of 3840 x 2160.

The AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was virtually tied with the Radeon RX 480 and GeForce GTX 1060 at this resolution. They were all about 67% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti, and 26% slower than the GeForce GTX 1070.

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Warhammer (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

At this resolution, the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was 1.5% faster than the Radeon RX 480, 6.5% faster than the GeForce GTX 1070, 13% faster than the GeForce GTX 1060, and 80% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti.

 

Warhammer (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

When the resolution increased to 1440p though, the GeForce GTX 1070 pulled away and was 24% faster than the Radeon RX 580. The average frame rate of the Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was just 1.5% faster than the Radeon RX 480, but it also delivered a significantly higher minimum frame rate.

 

Warhammer (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

At this ultra high resolution, the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was now 3% faster than the Radeon RX 480. It was also 5% and 82% faster than the GeForce GTX 1060 and the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti respectively.

Next Page > The Witcher 3 & For Honor Benchmark Results

 

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The Witcher 3 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

The AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was 4% faster than the Radeon RX 480 at this resolution, putting it neck-to-neck with the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

The Witcher 3 (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

At this higher resolution, the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was essentially between the Radeon RX 480 and the GeForce GTX 1060 in performance, with a 4% difference either way. It was also 78% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti, but 27% slower than the GeForce GTX 1070.

 

The Witcher 3 (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

 

The 4K resolution in The Witcher 3 is really tough on graphics cards, virtually halving their frame rates. The AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was, again, between the Radeon RX 480 and the GeForce GTX 1060 in performance, with a 4-5% difference either way. Only the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 was able to deliver an average frame rate above 30 fps.

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For Honor (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by For Honor‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

At 1080p, the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was exactly between the Radeon RX 480 and the GeForce GTX 1060 in performance, with a 4% difference either way. It was also 56% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti, but 31% slower than the GeForce GTX 1070.

 

For Honor (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by For Honor‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

Yet again, the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) maintained its position between the Radeon RX 480 and the GeForce GTX 1060 in performance, with a 4% difference either way.

 

For Honor (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by For Honor‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

At this ultra high resolution, the GeForce GTX 1060 finally pulled away, with a 7% performance advantage over the Radeon RX 580 (Amazon), which was 3% faster than the Radeon RX 480. Only the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 was able to deliver an average frame rate above 30 fps.

Next Page > Mass Effect: Andromeda Benchmark Results, Our Verdict

 

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Mass Effect: Andromeda (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Mass Effect: Andromeda.

At this entry-level gaming resolution, the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was no faster than the Radeon RX 480. They were both 9% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060 and 45% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti.

 

Mass Effect: Andromeda (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Mass Effect: Andromeda.

With the jump in resolution, the Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was just 1.5% faster than the Radeon RX 480. They were both 13% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060 and 48% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti.

 

Mass Effect: Andromeda (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Mass Effect: Andromeda.

At this ultra high resolution, the Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) was now 2% faster than the Radeon RX 480. They were both 13% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060 and 53% faster than the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti. Only the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 was able to deliver an average frame rate above 30 fps.

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Our Verdict On The Radeon RX 580

It’s pretty obvious from our benchmark results that the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) is just a slightly faster version of its predecessor, the Radeon RX 480. That is no slight, as the Radeon RX 480 is a fast graphics card. In fact, it was so fast that NVIDIA was forced to introduce the GeForce GTX 1060 at a lower price point to compete.

The Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) reused the Polaris 10 GPU from the Radeon RX 480, running it and the GDDR5 memory at a 9% and 14% higher clock speeds respectively. However, it only delivered an performance boost of between 1.5% and 4%.

Obviously, you wouldn’t upgrade to the Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) if you already own the Radeon RX 480, or GeForce GTX 1060. But it would make for a great upgrade if you are using an older, slower graphics card. That is precisely why AMD is targeting the Radeon RX 500 Series at gamers with 3 years or older graphics cards.

Here is the key takeaway point from all these benchmarks. Like its predecessor, the Radeon RX 480, the AMD Radeon RX 580 (Amazon) is designed for 1440p gaming. With some tweaks to the graphics settings, you should have no problem achieving an average frame rate of 60 fps at that resolution.

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Don’t forget to check out our other articles on AMD Radeon graphics technologies :

Go Back To > First Page | Computer Hardware + Systems | Home

 

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The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X Octa-Core Processor Review

The AMD Ryzen 7 is, no doubt, the most anticipated processor to be introduced in 2017. This is the 8-core processor that AMD fans always wanted, but AMD did not quite deliver… until now. That changes with the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X processor.

Based on current benchmarks, the AMD Ryzen 7 processors give even the latest 7th Generation Intel Core i7 processors a run for their money. And with AMD pricing them so competitively, they will make you wonder – why opt for a quad-core processor when you can have an 8-core processor?

 

Introducing The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X

The AMD Ryzen 7 family has some common features – 8 cores that can handle 16 threads simultaneously, a 4 MB L2 cache and a large 16 MB L3 cache. The 1800X is the top-of-the-line model, with a base clock speed of 3.6 GHz, with a boost clock of 4.0 GHz. Here is a specification comparison of the three AMD Ryzen 7 processors :

SpecificationsAMD Ryzen 7 1800XAMD Ryzen 7 1700XAMD Ryzen 7 1700
TDP95 W95 W65 W
SocketAM4AM4AM4
Process Technology14 nm FinFET14 nm FinFET14 nm FinFET
Processor Cores888
Number of Simultaneous Threads161616
L2 Cache Size4 MB4 MB4 MB
L3 Cache Size16 MB16 MB16 MB
Base Clock Speed3.6 GHz3.4 GHz3.0 GHz
Boost Clock Speed4.0 GHz3.8 GHz3.7 GHz
Bundled CPU CoolerNoneNoneAMD Wraith Spire
Launch Price (2017-03-02)US$ 499US$ 399US$ 349

The AMD Ryzen 7 processors do not just boast 8 cores, they are also the first AMD processors to support SMT (Simultaneous Multi-Threading). SMT allows each core to handle two simultaneous threads, as if they are two virtual processor cores.

 

Unboxing The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X

The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X processor does not come with a bundled CPU cooler, so you will need a Ryzen 7-compatible cooler. It comes in a rather large but light cardboard box. Let’s unbox it!

 

A Closer Look At The Ryzen 7 1800X

Let’s take a closer look at the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X processor. After all, AMD took the effort to laser-etch the RYZEN logo into the heatspreader! 😀

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Benchmarking The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X

In this article, we will take a look at the work and gaming performance of the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X processor. We will compare the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X to the Intel Core i7-6700K processor. Here is a table comparing their key specifications.

AMD Ryzen 7 1800X Intel Core i7-6700K Difference
Cores / Threads 8 / 16 4 / 8 + 100%
Base Clock 3.6 GHz 4.0 GHz – 10%
Boost Clock 4.0 GHz 4.2 GHz – 4.8%
L2 Cache 4 MB 1 MB + 300%
L3 Cache 16 MB 8 MB + 100%
Memory Speed DDR4-2666 DDR4-2133 + 25%
Current Price US$ 499 US$ 298 + 67%

Now, we will be the first to admit that this is a rather “unfair” comparison because the Core i7-6700K is a quad-core processor that costs only as much as the Ryzen 7 1700. However, this is the fastest Intel processor we have on hand, so let’s just roll with it, and see what we find…

Next Page > 3D Rendering, Video Transcoding & Radial Blur Performance

 

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3D Rendering Speed – CINEBENCH R15

CINEBENCH R15 is a real-world 3D rendering benchmark based on the MAXON Cinema 4D animation software. This is a great way to accurately determine the actual performance of a processor in 3D content creation.

CINEBENCH R15 Single Core

This Single Core test is not reflective of real world performance, but it is useful to find out the performance of the individual core.

The Single Core test shows that the individual processor core of the Ryzen 7 1800X is about 13.4% slower than the processor core of the Core i7-6700K. Of course, the Core i7-6700K has a 5% higher boost clock speed. If we adjust the results to account for that, the Intel Skylake core is about 10% faster than the AMD Ryzen core, clock for clock.

CINEBENCH R15 Multi Core

This shows the real-world performance of both processors. Having twice the number of cores allowed the Ryzen 7 1800X to beat the Core i7-6700K by 81%. Adjusting for the average 7.5% difference in base and boost clock speeds, the Ryzen 7 1800X would deliver 94% better performance than the Core i7-6700K at the same clock speeds.

CINEBENCH R15 MP Ratio

The analysis of the Multi-Processing Ratio is useful in checking the efficiency of the SMT implementation. The MP Ratio is independent of the processor’s clock speed.

The multi-threading capability of the Intel Core i7-6700K delivered a 22% boost to its Multi-Core processing speed. The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X, on the other hand, recorded a 27.4% boost to its Multi-Core processing speed. This means the AMD Ryzen’s SMT implementation is 5.8% more efficient than the Intel Skylake’s Hyper-Threading.

 

Video Transcoding Speed – HandBrake

HandBrake is a free, open-source video transcoding utility. Video transcoding basically converts a video file from one resolution / format to another. As you can imagine, it’s very compute-intensive. In our test, we converted a 4K video of 1.3 GB in size into a 1080p video (HQ1080p30).

The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X transcoded the video in less than 4.5 minutes, while the Intel Core i7-6700K took just under 7.5 minutes. This makes the Ryzen 7 1800X 68% faster than the Core i7-6700K.

If we adjust for the average 7.5% difference in base and boost clock speeds, the Ryzen 7 1800X would deliver 81% better performance than the Core i7-6700K at the same clock speeds.

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Radial Blur Speed – Photoshop CC 14

The radial blur filter adds the perception of motion to a picture. This is a compute-intensive operation that benefits from multiple processing cores. This radial blur test was performed on a single 13.5 megapixel photo, with a filesize of 4,910,867 bytes.

The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X applied the radial blur filter in just 7.3 seconds, while the Intel Core i7-6700K took 12.6 seconds. This makes the Ryzen 7 1800X 73% faster than the Core i7-6700K.

If we adjust for the average 7.5% difference in base and boost clock speeds, the Ryzen 7 1800X would deliver 85.5% better performance than the Core i7-6700K at the same clock speeds.

Next Page > Gaming Performance – 3DMark & Ashes of the Singularity

 

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3DMark – Time Spy (DirectX 12)

In the Time Spy DirectX 12 benchmark, the Ryzen 7 1800X was 60% faster than the Core i7-6700K in the CPU test. Obviously, not all of its 8 cores were being used.

But when it came to the two graphics tests, all that extra boost in CPU performance only gave it a small 0.6% to 1.25% boost in frame rates. The overall DirectX 12 performance improved by 5.7%.

 

3DMark – Fire Strike (1080p)

We ran the Fire Strike benchmark in the 1080p resolution, because this is the most common resolution gamers use today. The CPU is used exclusively to process Physics, and the Ryzen 7 1800X was 48% faster than the Core i7-6700K.

Surprisingly, the Graphics Score was 1.5% lower with the Ryzen 7 1800X, than it was for the Core i7-6700K. The Overall Score though was 3% better with the Ryzen 7 1800X.

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Ashes of the Singularity (1080p)

In the RTS game, Ashes of the Singularity, we can see that the frame rates were consistently lower with the Ryzen 7 1800X, albeit only by by 2-7% (4% on average).

 

Ashes of the Singularity (4K)

When we bumped up the resolution to 4K, the results were flipped. The Ryzen 7 1800X was slightly faster in the Normal and Medium batches. Overall, the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X was identical in performance to the Intel Core i7-6700K.

Next Page > Gaming Performance – Total War: Warhammer & The Witcher 3

 

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Total War: Warhammer (1080p)

When we tested Warhammer at 1080p, it ran about 5% slower with the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X.

 

Total War: Warhammer (4K)

But when we increased the resolution to 4K, the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X was identical in performance to the Intel Core i7-6700K.

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The Witcher 3 : Wild Hunt (1080p)

At 1080p, The Witcher 3 was about 1.5% slower with the Ryzen 7 1800X on average.

 

The Witcher 3 : Wild Hunt (4K)

When we bumped up the resolution to 4K though, the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X was identical in performance to the Intel Core i7-6700K.

Next Page > Our Verdict & Award, Where To Buy, Other AMD Ryzen Articles

 

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Our Verdict

The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X is definitely a far more powerful processor than the Intel Core i7-6700K. It has twice as many cores, and far more memory bandwidth. It was fantastic in 3D rendering and video transcoding, delivering 70-85% better performance. Sadly, most games are unable to make use of all those cores.

Games that run in the lower, mainstream resolution of 1920 x 1080 will be slightly slower with the Ryzen 7 1800X. It’s not much slower though – just 5% on average.

But that performance deficit is completely erased at the higher resolution of 3840 x 2160. The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X is virtually identical in performance to the Intel Core i7-6700K.

Obviously, at the 4K resolution, the graphics card is far, far more important than the CPU. But as the Warhammer and The Witcher 3 results show, the Ryzen 7 1800X actually helped to push up the minimum frame rate.

If you are going to buy the Ryzen 7 1800X for gaming, you are not going to worry about the small 5% deficit in 1080p frame rates, because you will most likely be playing in 1440p or 2160p resolutions.

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What is our takeaway from the test results? Simple.

In games : The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X is more or less equivalent to the Intel Core i7-6700K in performance.

In work applications : The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X is about 75% faster than the Intel Core i7-6700K.

If you plan on building a gaming machine, you might want to go for the cheaper Ryzen 7 1700 CPU (US$ 329 with a Wraith Spire LED cooler), or the Core i7-6700K.

But if you are building a workstation for 3D rendering or video transcoding, you can’t do wrong with the Ryzen 7 1800X. Especially if you want the best computing performance for under US$ 500. For that reason, we think the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X deserves no less than our Reviewer’s Choice Award! Congratulations, AMD!

 

Where To Buy

Here are direct links to the AMD Ryzen CPU and bundles on sale on Amazon :

 

Other AMD Ryzen Articles

Don’t forget to also read our other AMD Ryzen-related articles :

 

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The AMD Ryzen 7 Gaming Performance Examined

We have already showed you how fast the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X is in 3D rendering and video transcoding. It incinerated the Intel Core i7-6700K in multi-core processing, but proved to be slightly slower in single core processing. Today, we will examine the AMD Ryzen 7 gaming performance in this article!

 

3DMark – Time Spy (DirectX 12)

In the Time Spy DirectX 12 benchmark, the Ryzen 7 1800X was 60% faster than the Core i7-6700K in the CPU test. Obviously, not all of its 8 cores were being used.

But when it came to the two graphics tests, all that extra boost in CPU performance only gave it a small 0.6% to 1.25% boost in frame rates. The overall DirectX 12 performance improved by 5.7%.

 

3DMark – Fire Strike (1080p)

We ran the Fire Strike benchmark in the 1080p resolution, because this is the most common resolution gamers use today. The CPU is used exclusively to process Physics, and the Ryzen 7 1800X was 48% faster than the Core i7-6700K.

Surprisingly, the Graphics Score was 1.5% lower with the Ryzen 7 1800X, than it was for the Core i7-6700K. The Overall Score though was 3% better with the Ryzen 7 1800X.

Next Page > The AMD Ryzen 7 Gaming Performance In AOTS & Warhammer

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Ashes of the Singularity (1080p)

In the RTS game, Ashes of the Singularity, we can see that the frame rates were consistently lower with the Ryzen 7 1800X, albeit only by by 2-7% (4% on average).

 

Ashes of the Singularity (4K)

When we bumped up the resolution to 4K, the results were flipped. The Ryzen 7 1800X was slightly faster in the Normal and Medium batches. Overall, the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X was identical in performance to the Intel Core i7-6700K.

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Total War: Warhammer (1080p)

When we tested Warhammer at 1080p, it ran about 5% slower with the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X.

 

Total War: Warhammer (4K)

But when we increased the resolution to 4K, the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X was identical in performance to the Intel Core i7-6700K.

Next Page > The AMD Ryzen 7 Gaming Performance In The Witcher 3, Summary

 

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The Witcher 3 : Wild Hunt (1080p)

At 1080p, The Witcher 3 was about 1.5% slower with the Ryzen 7 1800X on average.

 

The Witcher 3 : Wild Hunt (4K)

When we bumped up the resolution to 4K though, the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X was identical in performance to the Intel Core i7-6700K.

 

Summary

The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X is definitely a far more powerful processor than the Intel Core i7-6700K. It has twice as many cores, and far more memory bandwidth. But it is obvious that most games are unable to make use of all that.

Games that run in the lower, mainstream resolution of 1920 x 1080 will be slightly slower with the Ryzen 7 1800X. It’s not much slower though – about 5% on average.

But that performance deficit is completely erased at the higher resolution of 3840 x 2160. The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X is virtually identical in performance to the Intel Core i7-6700K.

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Obviously, at the 4K resolution, the graphics card is far, far more important than the CPU. But as the Warhammer and The Witcher 3 results show, the Ryzen 7 1800X actually helped to push up the minimum frame rate.

What is our takeaway from this? Simple. The AMD Ryzen 7 1800X is more or less equivalent to the Intel Core i7-6700K in performance.

If you are going to buy the Ryzen 7 1800X for gaming, you are not going to worry about the small 5% deficit in 1080p frame rates, because you will most likely be playing in 1440p or 2160p resolutions.

 

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The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Review

AMD launched their Polaris GPU architecture to great fanfare with the introduction of the Radeon RX 480. It offered an affordable 1440p gaming alternative to the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070. The AMD Radeon RX 470 was released later, offering 1080p gaming performance at even lower cost and power consumption.

Today, we are going to take a look at the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition (RX-470P4LDB6) graphics card.  This is no ordinary Radeon RX 470 graphics card. It is factory-overclocked and boasts a really unique cooler. Check it out!

 

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Specification Comparison

How does the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition compare against a standard AMD Radeon RX 470 graphics card? Take a look!

SpecificationsStandard AMD Radeon RX 470XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black EditionDifference
Stream Processors20482048-
Texture Units128128-
ROPs3232-
GPU Clock Speed926 MHz base clock
1206 MHz boost clock
1256 MHz+ 4% to +35.6%
Texture Fill Rate118 to 154 GT/s160 GT/s+ 4% to +35.6%
Pixel Fill Rate30 to 39 GP/s40 GP/s+ 4% to +35.6%
Memory Bus Width256-bits256-bits-
Graphics Memory4 GB GDDR54 GB GDDR5-
Memory Clock Speed1650 MHz1750 MHz+ 6%
Memory Bandwidth211 GB/s224 GB/s+ 6%
TDP120 WNot stated (between 120 - 150 W)-
Cooling SolutionDual slot cooler with single fanXFX Ghost 4.0 coolerBetter cooling

For more specifications, please take a look at our Desktop Graphics Card Comparison Guide.

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Unboxing The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition

Here is our unboxing video of the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition graphics card. This is exactly what you can expect if you purchase one.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition graphics card comes in an overly large cardboard box. Inside, you will only find the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition graphics card, a combined installation guide and warranty card leaflet, a driver CD and a 4-pin to 6-pin power adaptor.

 

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Overview

In this video, we are going to take a quick look at the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition graphics card, and its unique Ghost 4.0 cooler.

Next Page > XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Up Close, Ghost 4.0 Cooler

 

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The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Up Close

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition is a large card – the same size as the AMD Radeon RX 480. The shroud of the XFX Ghost 4.0 cooler extends a little over the card itself, to accommodate the two large 85mm fans. The back is protected and stiffened by a solid aluminium backplate, which also serves as a secondary heatsink.

The XFX logo is etched into the backplate, with a white XFX logo on the top of the shroud. However, case modders should note that it does not have any LED lighting – the XFX logo will not light up when the card is powered up. The third XFX logo can be found as part of the exhaust vent, next to the DVI port.

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The XFX Ghost 4.0 Cooler

The XFX Ghost 4.0 cooler is, arguably, the highlight of this model. It features a unibody heatsink, with composite heatpipes. The unibody design improves its ability to cool the VRM and GDDR5 memory modules by 40%, while reducing fan noise by 5%.

The composite heatpipe design, on the other hand, combines the liquid and capillary action heatpipe in a single pipe. This increases the total heatpipe surface area by 30%, which greatly improves its ability to quickly transfer heat.

The other cool thing about the XFX Ghost 4.0 cooler are its two 85 mm fans, pun intended. With a power output of 4.2 W, two of these FirstD FDC10H12S9-C fans can push a considerable amount of air through the heatsink. But what’s really cool are its patented hard-swap design, and its load-sensing technology.

The hard swap design allows for easy detachment and installation of the two fans. They are locked in place by just two clips. You can swap them out for more powerful fans, or even fans with LED lights. It also allows you to easily remove them to clean the blades or even the heatsink fins underneath. Very useful!

The other cool feature is the fans’ auto load-sensing capability. They will automatically adjust their speed according to the workload. During light loads (watching videos, using office applications), the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition runs cool enough that both fans do not spin at all, giving you absolute silence. But when you start gaming, the fans start up and increase their speed to meet the demand automatically.

Next Page > Benchmarking Notes, Cooling Performance, Noise Level

 

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Benchmarking Notes

Our graphics benchmarking test bed has the following specifications :

Operating System : Microsoft Windows 10 64-bit

Processor : Intel Core i7 6700K processor running at 4.0 GHz

Motherboard : ASRock Z170 Extreme4

Memory : 8 GB DDR4-2133 memory (dual-channel)

Storage : 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD

Monitor : Dell P2415Q Ultra HD Monitor

We used the GeForce driver version 372.54 for all three NVIDIA graphics cards, and the Radeon Software 16.8.2 driver for the three AMD graphics cards used in our tests.

 

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Cooling Performance

The AMD Radeon RX 470 uses the AMD Polaris 10 GPU, which is fabricated on the 14 nm FinFET process. The smaller process technology allows AMD to run the Radeon RX 470 GPU at 1.2 GHz with a TDP of just 120 W. This allows for a much cooler card, and hopefully, better overclocking potential.

With its Ghost 4.0 cooler, the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition should deliver significantly better cooling performance than the stock Radeon RX 470 card. While we don’t have one at hand, we do have a number of other AMD and NVIDIA cards. Take a look at their peak exhaust temperature (as measured at their exhaust vents).

Note that these are not the recorded temperatures, but how much hotter the exhaust air is above ambient temperature.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition is a surprisingly cool-running card, producing much cooler exhaust air than the Radeon RX 480, or the GeForce GTX 1060. There is a reason for this though, which we will examine in the next section…

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The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition Noise Level

We recorded the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition as it was running the 3DMark Fire Strike Ultra benchmark for the third time.

As you can hear, the two fans do produce a considerable amount of noise. That is the secret (and downside) to its significantly better cooling performance. Of course, this is an open testbed, so the noise will be muted in an enclosed chassis.

Next Page > 3DMark DirectX 12 & Direct 11 Benchmark Results

 

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3DMark DirectX 12 Benchmark (2560 x 1440)

3DMark Time Spy is a new DirectX 12 benchmark that supports new API features like asynchronous compute, explicit multi-adapter, and multi-threading.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition is about 35% faster than the Radeon R9 380 – amazing performance for a card that costs just US$ 219. In fact, it is just 8% slower than the AMD Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), and 12% slower than the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060!

 

3DMark (1920 x 1080)

For Direct 11 performance, we started testing the graphics cards using 3DMark at the most common gaming resolution – 1920 x 1080.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition was 40% faster than the Radeon R9 380. That puts it just 7% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB).

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3DMark (2560 x 1440)

Then we took 3DMark up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. Let’s take a look!

At this resolution, the extra memory of the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB) starts to pay off. It was now 13% faster than the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition, which only has 4 GB of GDDR5 memory.

 

3DMark (3840 x 2160)

This is torture, even for the GeForce GTX 980 Ti and the GeForce GTX 1070!

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition was now 16% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB). Not that it matters. The frame rates are completely unplayable for all cards at this resolution.

Next Page > Ashes of the Singularity & Warhammer Benchmark Results

 

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Ashes of the Singularity (1920 x 1080)

We tested Ashes of the Singularity in the DirectX 12 mode, which supports the new Asynchronous Compute feature. We started with the full HD resolution.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition did very well in this test, virtually tying with the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB) and GeForce GTX 1060!

 

Ashes of the Singularity (2560 x 1440)

We then took Ashes of the Singularity up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. Let’s see how the cards fare…

Again, the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition did very well. It tied the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB) and GeForce GTX 1060.

 

Ashes of the Singularity (3840 x 2160)

Finally, let’s see how the cards perform with Ashes of the Singularity running at the Ultra HD resolution of 3840 x 2160.

Surprisingly, the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition continued to match the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB) and the GeForce GTX 1060 in performance. It was actually able to deliver playable frame rates even at such a high resolution.

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Warhammer (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition delivered frame rates in excess of 60 fps. It actually tied the GeForce GTX 1060 in performance, and came in just 7% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB).

 

Warhammer (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

At this higher resolution, the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition slipped under 50 fps. Still pretty decent performance. It was now 4% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060, and 8% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB).

 

Warhammer (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by Total War : Warhammer‘s internal DirectX 12 benchmark.

The Ultra HD resolution proved too much for most cards. Only the GeForce GTX 1070 and the GeForce GTX 980 Ti delivered playable frame rates. The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition was now 9% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), and 11% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

Next Page > The Witcher 3 & Fallout 4 Benchmark Results

 

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The Witcher 3 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition performed well at this resolution, delivering an average frame rate of 60 fps. That made it 9% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), and 14% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

The Witcher 3 (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

When the resolution increased to 1440p, all cards took a massive hit in frame rate. Only the GeForce GTX 1070 and the GeForce GTX 980 Ti delivered average frame rates above 60 fps.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition had a playable average frame rate of 41 fps. It remained 9% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), and 14% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

The Witcher 3 (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

The Ultra HD resolution is a real torture, even humbling the GeForce GTX 1070 and the GeForce GTX 980 Ti.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition remained 9% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), but was now 16% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

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Fallout 4 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

Fallout 4 is a relatively “easy” for most graphics cards at the resolution of 1920 x 1080. The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition had no problem delivering an average frame rate of 78 fps. That makes it just 4% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), but 17% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

Fallout 4 (2560 x 1440)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

When we took the resolution to the next level though, it really cut down on frame rates. The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition‘s average frame rate of 56 fps still very good, being 27% faster than the Radeon R9 380. However, it was now 8% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), but 19% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

 

Fallout 4 (3840 x 2160)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, that FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

The 4K resolution really taxed the cards. Even the GeForce GTX 1070 could not deliver an average frame rate of 60 fps.

The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition only managed an average frame rate of 31 fps. That made it 7% slower than the Radeon RX 480 (8 GB), but 18% slower than the GeForce GTX 1060.

Next Page > Our Verdict, Specifications & Lowest Price

 

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Our Verdict

The AMD Radeon RX 470 was always meant for 1080p gaming, but XFX managed to take it one step further with the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition. Thanks to the factory-overclocking of the GPU and the GDDR5 memory, it offers performance close to that of the AMD Radeon RX 480.

In our real world benchmarks, the XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition was proven to be capable of delivering good frame rates even at 2560 x 1440. 1440p gaming is now possible with the Radeon RX 470!

Of course, the extra performance comes at a cost. The XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black Edition has a launch price of US$219. That’s a US$40 premium over a standard Radeon RX 470, and a US$20 premium over a 4GB Radeon RX 480.

What you get in return is a well-made, factory-overclocked Radeon RX 470 card, with a powerful load-sensing cooler and a solid aluminium backplate. The hard-swappable fans are also a nice touch, allowing for very easy upgrades, replacement and maintenance.

Of course, you may just decide to skip these niceties and top up another US$10 for an 8GB Radeon RX 480. That will buy you a slightly faster card, with more overclocking potential.

SpecificationsStandard AMD Radeon RX 470XFX Radeon RX 470 RS Black EditionDifference
Stream Processors20482048-
Texture Units128128-
ROPs3232-
GPU Clock Speed926 MHz base clock
1206 MHz boost clock
1256 MHz+ 4% to +35.6%
Texture Fill Rate118 to 154 GT/s160 GT/s+ 4% to +35.6%
Pixel Fill Rate30 to 39 GP/s40 GP/s+ 4% to +35.6%
Memory Bus Width256-bits256-bits-
Graphics Memory4 GB GDDR54 GB GDDR5-
Memory Clock Speed1650 MHz1750 MHz+ 6%
Memory Bandwidth211 GB/s224 GB/s+ 6%
TDP120 WNot stated (between 120 - 150 W)-
Cooling SolutionDual slot cooler with single fanXFX Ghost 4.0 coolerBetter cooling

For more specifications, please take a look at our Desktop Graphics Card Comparison Guide.

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True Performance Of The Radeon RX 480 Examined

True Performance Of The Radeon RX 480 Examined

After the Radeon RX 480 was found to draw excessive power from the PCI Express bus, AMD released the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver. This is a non-WHQL driver that was promises to reduce the Radeon RX 480‘s power draw from the PCI Express bus. It also promises to improve the Radeon RX 480‘s performance to correct for the expected drop in performance.

The reduction in power consumption is not enabled by default though, because it reduces performance. Instead, AMD will add a Compatibility Mode option in Radeon Settings, which you must manually toggle. Check out what the new Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver offers :

  • The Radeon RX 480’s power distribution has been improved for AMD reference boards, lowering the current drawn from the PCIe bus.
  • A new “compatibility mode” UI toggle has been made available in the Global Settings menu of Radeon Settings. This option is designed to reduce total power with minimal performance impact if end users experience any further issues.  This toggle is “off” by default.
  • Performance improvements for the Polaris architecture that yield performance uplifts in popular game titles of up to 3%. These optimizations are designed to improve the performance of the Radeon RX 480, and should substantially offset the performance impact for users who choose to activate the “compatibility” toggle.

In this article, we will examine the drop in performance caused by the reduced power consumption. Then we will compare it to the boost in performance from the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver. Check it out!

 

3DMark (1920 x 1080)

We started testing the graphics cards using 3DMark at the most common gaming resolution – 1920 x 1080.

In the lower resolution of 1920 x 1080, the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] received a performance boost of 3% to 3.8%. That was sufficient to completely erase the 2.4% to 3% drop in performance due to the reduced power consumption.

 

3DMark (2560 x 1440)

Then we took 3DMark up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. According to AMD, this is the sweet spot for the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon]. Let’s take a look!

When we increased the resolution to 2560 x 1440 though, the performance boost from the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver dropped to just 2.3% to 2.9%. It just about erased the drop in performance from the reduced power consumption.

 

3DMark (3840 x 2160)

This is torture, even for the 8 GB version of the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon].

At the 4K resolution, the 2.3% to 2.85% boost in  from the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver was not enough to offset the 3.7% to 4% drop in performance from the lower TDP. The Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] ended up 1% to 1.8% slower.

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Next Page > Fallout 4, Witcher 3 & Warhammer Results, Conclusion

 

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Fallout 4 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

In Fallout 4, the new Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver boosted the average frame rate enough to make up for the drop in performance from the reduced power consumption.

 

The Witcher 3 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

In The Witcher 3, the performance boost was substantial enough to give the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] a small 1.3% boost in average frame rate, even with the Compatibility Mode triggered.

 

Total War : Warhammer (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by the Total War : Warhammer benchmark.

Surprisingly, the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver did even better in Total War : Warhammer. Even with the reduced power consumption, the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] received a nice 2.2% boost in the average frame rate!

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Conclusion

The Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver does two things – reprogram the Radeon RX 480‘s power controller so it will pull more current from the 6-pin PCI Express power cable, and less from the PCI Express bus. This fix does not reduce performance. However, it still means that the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] will exceed its rated 150 W TDP.

The higher TDP should not cause any concerns normally. However, those want their Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] to adhere to the rated 150 W TDP can enable the new Compatibility Mode switch in Radeon Settings. This reduces the Radeon RX 480‘s TDP to 150 W.

The reduction in power consumption reduces performance, of course. But for all of the furore over the Radeon RX 480 power draw controversy, it looks like the performance boost that the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] received from the higher-than-rated TDP was less than 4%.

We will be correcting our AMD Radeon RX 480 Review to reflect this change. Yes, 4% may be small, but it is still a significant change, and we have to be accurate.

The good news though is that the small drop in performance is virtually offset by performance optimisations for the AMD Polaris architecture in the new Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver. So if you are a Radeon RX 480 user, go get it now!

 

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Radeon Software 16.7.1 Performance Comparison

Radeon Software 16.7.1

Following the Radeon RX 480 power draw controversy, AMD released the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver. This is a non-WHQL driver that was pushed out quickly to fix the Radeon RX 480‘s excessive power draw from the PCI Express bus. However, it also comes with a 3% boost in performance for the Polaris architecture.

Finally, we’ve implemented a collection of performance improvements for the Polaris architecture that yield performance uplifts in popular game titles of up to 3%1. These optimizations are designed to improve the performance of the Radeon RX 480, and should substantially offset the performance impact for users who choose to activate the “compatibility” toggle.

So we decided to take a look at the performance improvements it delivers in the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon]. We also took a look at how it affects the AMD Radeon R9 380 graphics card, which is based on the previous-generation Fiji architecture. Check it out!

 

3DMark (1920 x 1080)

We started testing the graphics cards using 3DMark at the most common gaming resolution – 1920 x 1080.

The Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] received a 3.15% boost in the Overall Score, a 3.77% boost in the Graphics Score and a 3% boost in the Combined Score. Very nice! The Radeon R9 380, however, did not benefit from the newer Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver at all.

The frame rate breakdown shows the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] edging even further away from its predecessor, the Radeon R9 380. It is now 44-48% faster than the Radeon R9 380, thanks to the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver.

 

3DMark (2560 x 1440)

Then we took 3DMark up a notch to the resolution of 2560 x 1440. According to AMD, this is the sweet spot for the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon]. Let’s take a look!

At this higher resolution, the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] received a smaller performance boost of 2.6% in the Overall Score, 2.9% in the Graphics Score and 2.3% in the Combined Score. The Radeon R9 380‘s performance actually suffered slightly (by 1%) with the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver.

The small boost in performance from the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver only gave the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] a small 0.5-1 fps boost in frame rate. Coupled with the slight drop in the Radeon R9 380‘s performance, the Radeon RX 480 is now 40-50% faster than the Radeon R9 380.

 

3DMark (3840 x 2160)

This is torture, even for the 8 GB version of the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon]. The Radeon R9 380 would do even worse, with just 4 GB of GDDR5 memory.

For some reason, the Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver caused the benchmark to fail while running on the Radeon R9 380. However, we can see that it gives the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] is a small 2.4% boost in the Overall Score, a 2.3% boost in the Graphics Score and a 2.85% boost in the Combined Score.

Based on the Radeon R9 380 running on the earlier Radeon Software 16.6.2 driver, the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] is now 36-49% faster than the Radeon R9 380 at this resolution.

Next Page > Fallout 4, Witcher 3 & Warhammer, Conclusion & Downloads

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Fallout 4 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, FRAPS recorded in Fallout 4.

The new Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver seems to greatly increase the frame rate range for the Radeon RX 480, and slightly in the Radeon R9 380. However, only the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] saw a small 1.9% boost in the average frame rate.

 

The Witcher 3 (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, FRAPS recorded in The Witcher 3.

The Radeon Software 16.7.1 driver gave both the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] and the Radeon R9 380 a small boost in frame rate of 3% and 1% respectively.

 

Total War : Warhammer (1920 x 1080)

This chart shows you the minimum and maximum frame rates, as well as the average frame rate, recorded by the Total War : Warhammer benchmark.

Surprisingly, the Radeon R9 380 saw an appreciable boost in the frame rate range, although the average frame rate only creeped slightly higher. The Radeon RX 480 [Amazon], though, received a more substantial 2.8% boost in average frame rate.

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Conclusion & Downloads

If you are using the new AMD Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] graphics card, you should download and use the new Radeon Software 16.7.1, even if you don’t care about its excessive power draw from the PCI Express bus.

In the 3 games we tested, the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] enjoyed a small boost of 2-3% in frame rate. Not earth-shattering, to be sure, but still a nice boost. The performance boost alone is worth upgrading to Radeon Software 16.7.1, even though it’s not WHQL-certified. You can download them here :

However, if you are using a Fiji-based graphics card like the Radeon R9 380 we tested, you should not waste your time with the new Radeon Software 16.7.1. You will not see any improvement in performance. In fact, it may even deteriorate a little, or worse, fail to run properly when rendering in 4K.

We also investigated how much performance is lost when the Radeon RX 480 [Amazon] is set to its Compatibility Mode to comply with the PCI Express standard. Check it out in our article – True Performance of the Radeon RX 480 Examined!

 

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