Here we have our real gaming tests. Each of the games we chose use multiple cores and GPUs. They are able to stress the system through use of good AI. Both have decent positional audio that adds impact to the sound subsystem of the board. We ran each game through the level or parts listed and recorded frames per second using FRAPS. This brings the whole game into play.
As most IGPs are not meant for high-end gaming we have swapped out one of our First Person Shooters for a more mainstream game. We have also adjusted down the testing resolution from 1920x1200 to 1280x960. In order to keep full measure of the board we return to 1920x1200 when we test the board with our GTX-285.
The SIMS 3 is the third complete edition of this popular game. In it you create a personality for use in a virtual world. The town we chose was Sunset Valley; we created a basic character and off we went. We performed as many actions as we were able to in order to give the board and GPU as much to think about as we could. The settings we used are shown below.
The HD4290 is not powerful enough to run the SIMS 3 at our standard resolutions and settings. If we drop them down or push the GPU we might see a better showing, but that, as they say, is for another article.
Far Cry 2
Version and / or Patch Used: V1.00
Timedemo or Level Used: Clearing the Safe house through to the Rescue
Developer Homepage: http://www.ubi.com
Product Homepage: http://www. http://farcry.us.ubi.com
Buy It Here
Far Cry 2 is a large sandbox style game. There are no levels here so as you move about the island you are on you do not have to wait for the "loading" sign to go away. It is mission driven so each mission is what you would normally think of as the next "level".
In the game you take the role of a mercenary who has been sent to kill the Jackal. Unfortunately your malaria kicks in and you end up being found by him. Long story short, you become the errand boy for a local militia leader and run all over the island doing his bidding. The settings we used for testing are shown below.
As we all know, there is no IGP (or IGX) that can handle Far Cry 2 at anything approaching playable resolutions. We could reduce everything down and have a horrible mass of blocks on the screen, but at that point would it be worth it?
As we have noted before, the AMD HD 4290 is not up to par for mainstream gaming. You might be able to get a few more FPS if you overclock the GPU, but unfortunately that is a risky proposition.
GIGABYTE's 890GX shows us performance in line with the ASUS 890GX and in fact has a 1-2 FPS edge on the ASUS. Still, if you are looking to game at all you will want to spend the extra cash and pick something like a HD 5670.