ULTRA HIGH-END: SLI ASUS STRIX GTX 970 – 4K Crysis 3 Crytek’s final installment in the Crysis trilogy is easily their most graphically ambitious release, and even though it is now a few years old, it still represents the bleeding-edge in graphical fidelity. We test on “High” with FXAA. Starting off our 4K benchmarks, we can see that Crysis 3 plays nearly the same on all configurations with a slightly worse frame time on our 5960X. However, once overclocked our FX-8370 delivers the best experience, never dropping below 30 FPS in terms of frame time variance. Witcher 3 The Witcher 3 is definitely one of the most highly anticipated game releases this year, and as the follow-up to developer CD Projekt RED’s The Witcher 2 – which was one of the most graphically intense PC game when it was released – it has some big shoes to fill. We test on “High” with NVIDIA HairWorks off, and post-processing set to “High” with FXAA enabled. Above we can see that the FX-8370 is about 10% faster in terms of average FPS at both stock and while overclocked. Frame time variance is also much better although both CPUs do drop below 30 FPS, which can lead to some noticeable stutter. Still, the FX-8370 does deliver a smoother experience overall. Tomb Raider (2013) The most recent iteration of Crystal Dynamic’s long-running series, Tomb Raider represents one of the best-looking titles on PC to date. Its varied landscapes and beautiful organic environments create a quite graphically demanding title. We test this game on “Ultimate” with TressFX and FXAA. Tomb Raider is a title that is definitely not very CPU-bound, and here it shows once again. Performance differences are less than 1% in all instances, except for our stock AMD configuration which displays a slightly lower drop in frame time. Still, all configurations played the game fairly smoothly. Grand Theft Auto V One of the most highly-anticipated releases for PC, GTA V is the latest installment of Rockstar’s long-running genre-defining open-world shooter, and it is their most graphically demanding title yet! with massive city that’s brought to life with immense detail. We test on “Very High” with all “Advanced Graphics” and MSAA options turned off with FXAA enabled. Very interesting results. We can see that in terms of average FPS the 5960X outpaces the AMD chip by at least 5% (about 3-4 FPS). However, looking at our frame time variance it is much worse, showing what would be a fairly sutter-y experience. This is exactly the reason these metrics are so important as they can reveal hidden performance issues. Project CARS Project CARS is easily one of the biggest titles out there in racing sims, with realistic weather conditions, advanced lighting effects, and physics. Slightly Mad Studios has had a pedigree in making racing games and this one is no slouch. We test on Nurmburg Ring in ‘Stormy’ weather conditions at “High” settings with all forms of anti-aliasing turned off. As we can see above, performance is very similar; at stock we have a different of just above 8% with the 5960X winning out. Once overclocked the gap is decreased to just about 3% in terms of average FPS, with frame time variance being nearly identical.