GeForce Experience & The Test

Before jumping into our test results, there’s one last thing we wanted to touch upon quickly. Along with announcing the GTX 690 at the NVIDIA Gaming Festival 2012, NVIDIA also used the occasion to announce a new software utility called GeForce Experience.

For some time now NVIDIA has offered a feature they call Optimal Playable Settings through GeForce.com, which are a series of game setting configurations that NVIDIA has tested and is recommending for various GeForce video cards. It’s a genuinely useful service, but it’s also not well known and only covers desktop GPUs.

With GeForce Experience NVIDIA is going to be taking that concept one step further and offering an application that interfaces with both the game and the successor to NVIDIA’s OPS service. The key difference being that rather than having the settings on a website and requiring the user to punch in those settings by hand, GeForce Experience can fetch those settings from NVIDIA and make the settings changes on its own. This would make the process much more accessible, as not only do users not need to know anything about how to access their settings or what they do, but the moment NVIDIA includes this with their drivers it will be far more widespread than OPS ever was.

The other change is that NVIDIA is going to be moving away from manual testing in favor of automated testing. OPS are generated by hand, whereas GeForce Experience settings are going to be based on automated testing, allowing NVIDIA to cover a wider range of games and video cards, most importantly by including mobile video cards. NVIDIA already has GPU farms for driver regression testing, so this is a logical extension of that concept to use those farms to generate and test game settings.

GeForce Experience will be launching in beta form on June 6th.

The Test

The press drivers for the GTX 690 are 301.33, though it sounds like NVIDIA will actually launch with a slightly newer version today. As the GTX 690 is launching so soon after the GTX 680 these drivers are virtually identical to the GTX 680 launch drivers. Meanwhile for the GeForce 500 series we’re using 301.24, and for the AMD Radeon cards Catalyst 12.4

We’d also like to give a shout-out to Asus, who sent us one of their wonderful PA246Q 24” P-IPS monitors to allow us to complete our monitor set for multi-monitor testing. From here on we’ll be able to offer multi-monitor results for our high-end cards, and a number of cards have already had that data added in Bench.

Next, based on an informal poll on our forums we’re going to be continuing our existing SLI/CF testing methodology. All of our test results will be with both cards directly next to each other as opposed to spaced apart in order to test the worst case scenario. Users with such a configuration are a minority based on our data, but there are still enough of them that we believe it should be covered.

Finally, we’d like to note that since we don’t have a matching pair of 7970 reference cards, we’re using our one reference card along with XFX’s R7970 BEDD. For gaming performance, power consumption, and temperatures this doesn’t have a material impact, but it means we don’t have meaningful noise performance for the 7970.

CPU: Intel Core i7-3960X @ 4.3GHz
Motherboard: EVGA X79 SLI
Chipset Drivers: Intel 9.​2.​3.​1022
Power Supply: Antec True Power Quattro 1200
Hard Disk: Samsung 470 (256GB)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws DDR3-1867 4 x 4GB (8-10-9-26)
Case: Thermaltake Spedo Advance
Monitor: Samsung 305T
Asus PA246Q
Video Cards: AMD Radeon HD 7970
AMD Radeon HD 6990
AMD Radeon HD 6970
AMD Radeon HD 5970
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 590
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580
Video Drivers: NVIDIA ForceWare 301.24
NVIDIA ForceWare 301.33
AMD Catalyst 12.4
OS: Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit

 

Overclocking Crysis: Warhead
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  • tviceman - Thursday, May 03, 2012 - link

    Last page: Based on our benchmarks we’re looking at 95% of the performance of the GTX "580 SLI" - 580 SLI should read 680 SLI. Reply
  • UltraTech79 - Thursday, May 03, 2012 - link

    I wish there was a separate button to point out this sort of thing so they could silently correct it. Dont get me wrong, I think its good to have accurate information, just clutters things up a bit. Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Thursday, May 03, 2012 - link

    My inbox is always open.=) Reply
  • mediaconvert - Friday, May 04, 2012 - link

    p 2

    While the basic design of the GTX 690 resembles the GTX 590, NVIDIA has replaced virtually every bit "with plastic with metal" for aesthetic/perceptual purposes.

    surely "with plastic with metal" to "of plastic with metal"

    still a good review
    Reply
  • rockqc - Thursday, May 03, 2012 - link

    1st line on page 2 "Much like the GTX 680 launch and the GTX 590 before it, the first generation the first generation of GTX 690 cards are reference boards being built by NVIDIA"

    First generation has been written twice.
    Reply
  • Torrijos - Thursday, May 03, 2012 - link

    The first benchmark plotted (Crysis) has a resolution of 5760 x 1200, this has to be wrong! Reply
  • tipoo - Thursday, May 03, 2012 - link

    It's crazy but right. He tested that resolution on multiple games. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Thursday, May 03, 2012 - link

    If you look at accumulated benchmarks across the web, the 680 Nvidia cards beat the 7970 amd cards by a much higher percentage in 1920x1080 (17.61% ahead) than they do in 1920x1200 (10.14% ahead).
    This means anand reviews always tests in 1920x1200 to give the amd cards a prettier looking review, instead of testing in 1920x1080 (the most commonly available resolution at 1920x that they could easily set their 1920x1200 monitors to).
    Hence their tests here at anand are likely also amd favorably biased in higher resolutions.
    http://translate.google.pl/translate?hl=pl&sl=...
    Reply
  • A5 - Thursday, May 03, 2012 - link

    It's not like 19x12 is an uncommon or unavailable resolution. Maybe Nvidia should improve their 19x12 performance? Reply
  • crimson117 - Thursday, May 03, 2012 - link

    Sadly, it is a very uncommon resolution for new monitors. Almost every 22-24" monitor your buy today is 1080p instead of 1200p. :( Reply

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