Portal 2

A stalwart of the Source engine, Portal 2 is the big hit of 2011 following on from the original award-winning Portal.  In our testing suite, Portal 2 performance should be indicative of CS:GO performance to a certain extent.  Here we test Portal 2 at 1920x1080 with High/Very High graphical settings.

Portal 2 IGP, 1920x1080, Very High, 8xMSAA

Portal 2 mirrors previous testing, albeit our frame rate increases as a percentage are not that great – 1333 to 1600 is a 4.3% increase, but 1333 to 2400 is only an 8.8% increase.

Batman Arkham Asylum

Made in 2009, Batman:AA uses the Unreal Engine 3 to create what was called “the Most Critically Acclaimed Superhero Game Ever”, awarded in the Guinness World Record books with an average score of 91.67 from reviewers.  The game boasts several awards including a BAFTA.  Here we use the in-game benchmark while at the lowest specification settings without PhysX at 1920x1080.  Results are reported to the nearest FPS, and as such we take 4 runs and take the average value of the final three, as the first result is sometimes +33% more than normal.

Batman: AA IGP, 1920x1080, Ultra Low

Batman: AA represents some of the best increases of any application in our testing.  Jumps from 1333 C9 to 1600 C9 and 1866 C9 gives an 8% then another 7% boost, ending with a 21% increase in frame rates moving from 1333 C9 to 2400 C10.

Overall IGP Results

Taking all our IGP results gives us the following graph:

The only game that beats the MemTweakIt predictions is Batman: AA, but most games follow the similar shape of increases just scaled differently.  Bearing in mind the price differences between the kits, if IGP is your goal then either the 1600 C9 or 1866 C9 seem best in terms of bang-for-buck, but 2133 C9 will provide extra performance if the budget stretches that far.

Gaming Tests: Metro 2033, Civilization V, Dirt 3 Input/Output Testing
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  • Peanutsrevenge - Friday, October 19, 2012 - link

    Thanks Ian.

    Well, except for making me feel ludicrously old, first memory kit of 4GB DDR2?

    Mine was back in SIMM days, when I think I added an 8MB 72pin stick to my existing 4MB stick.

    Although the external math co-processor might have come first.

    And I'm only 31.

    You shall now always be Dr Evil Cutress to me.
    Reply
  • IanCutress - Friday, October 19, 2012 - link

    First *purchased* memory kit. I dealt with plenty of older memory thanks to hand me downs or prebuilt systems from my family at the time. I still have some SDRAM around somewhere, or some 8MB sticks of something or other. It's in a box under the desk ;)

    Haha, I've been called worse :D

    Ian
    Reply
  • alpha754293 - Friday, October 19, 2012 - link

    I would have figured that with a memory test/benchmarking that you would be running Stream test.

    And with all this talk about the various latencies (measured in clock cycles) - a) a comparison should be given between the theorectical calculations and the actual performance and b) that you would think that you'd use something like lmbench in order to try to better quantify/test that (in addition to the actual games, tools, and applications).

    Most of the results are pretty much inconclusive since the standard deviation is within the margin of error.
    Reply
  • IanCutress - Friday, October 19, 2012 - link

    Main reason is to steer away from synthetics. Synthetics frustrate me so - they will easily show the difference between a 1600 C9 and 2400 C10 kit, but what is that difference in real life? If latencies and burst speeds are x% difference in the synthetic, does that actually make a difference when playing Portal 2? Hence the requirement of this review to focus on the practical rather than the synthetic.

    Regarding being within standard deviations, the results you see are the culmination of multiple tests. The standard deviations are actually quite low as the results are enormously repeatable. I did a science doctorate, I make sure my numbers are valid.

    Ian
    Reply
  • Tchamber - Friday, October 19, 2012 - link

    Back in 2009 I picked up a 3x2GB kit of Mushkin DDR3 1600 with timings of 6-7-6-18. Why don't we see low latency like that any more? Reply
  • IanCutress - Friday, October 19, 2012 - link

    Those were linked to different types of memory chips at the time - the Elpida 'Hyper' ICs (http://www.anandtech.com/show/2799). Nice speeds, but high fail rates and low yields. They have been replaced by chips that are slightly slower, but a lot more reliable. Also to note that those Elpida Hyper kits worked great with Clarkdale and Nehalem, but are poor with Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge.

    Ian
    Reply
  • CherryBOMB - Friday, October 19, 2012 - link

    Can you explain why you say Hyper' IC's are " are poor with Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge."
    As I stated "I have 16gb of the fastest money could buy around that era running on x79 @ 1666 6-6-6-18-1t right now."

    This was a tri channel run >
    http://www.overclock.net/t/872945/top-30-3d-mark-1...

    post #1054
    Reply
  • IanCutress - Saturday, October 20, 2012 - link

    Because Hyper ICs fell out of favor, motherboard manufacturers are now reluctant to spend time in optimizing the Hyper IC kits to work with their systems. Thus the kits often have to fall back onto default settings, and they sometimes do not work. As one set of ICs is phased out, and new ICs come in, the newer ICs get priority.

    Ian
    PS. You'll find me on the overclock.net HWBot team :)
    Reply
  • CherryBOMB - Friday, October 19, 2012 - link

    I have 16gb of the fastest money could buy around that era running on x79 @ 1666 6-6-6-18-1t right now.
    well over $1000 invested. Each 6gb kit was over $450 - bought the extra to future proof to quad lanes today.
    2x CMT6GX3M3A1600C6
    1x CMT4GX3M2A1600C6
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8...

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8...
    Reply
  • saturn85 - Friday, October 19, 2012 - link

    how about adding a folding on cpu benchmark with different memory speed? Reply

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