As far as our testbed goes there's nothing out of the ordinary with the same X79 platform we've been using all year present.
Before we get into the performance side of things let's quickly cover the video cards that will be in our graphs today that will help give us a good idea of just how the HD 7850 Power Edition from MSI performs.
Alongside the older HD 6950 we've got reference clocked HD 7000 series video cards including the HD 7770, HD 7850, HD 7870, HD 7950 and HD 7970. The main video card we'll be comparing against today is of course going to be that reference clocked HD 7850 as we want to see what kind of extra performance the MSI overclock brings to the table.
Not to be left out we've also got some video cards from NVIDIA including the GTX 560 Ti, GTX 570 and GTX 580. When it comes to the 600 series, this mid $200 price bracket is left empty at the moment. I'm sure we'll see something from NVIDIA fill this area in the coming months, though.
Let's get started!
The FPS Numbers Explained
When we benchmark our video cards and look at the graphs, we aim to get to a certain level of FPS which we consider playable. While many may argue that the human eye can't see over 24 FPS or 30 FPS, any true gamer will tell you that as we climb higher in Frames Per Seconds (FPS), the overall gameplay feels smoother. There are three numbers we're looking out for when it comes to our benchmarks.
30 FPS - It's the minimum number we aim for when it comes to games. If you're not dropping below 30 FPS during games, you're going to have a nice and smooth gaming experience. The ideal situation is that even in a heavy fire fight, the minimum stays above 30 FPS making sure that you can continue to aim easily or turn the corner with no dramas.
60 FPS - It's the average we look for when we don't have a minimum coming at us. If we're getting an average of 60 FPS, we should have a minimum of 30 FPS or better and as mentioned above, it means we've got some smooth game play happening.
120 FPS - The new number that we've been hunting down over recent months. If you're the owner of a 120 Hz monitor, to get the most out of it you want to get around the 120 FPS mark. Moving from 60 FPS / 60 Hz to 120 FPS / 120 Hz brings with it a certain fluidity that can't really be explained, but instead has to be experienced. Of course, if you're buying a 120 Hz monitor to take advantage of 3D, an average of 120 FPS in our benchmark means that in 3D you will have an average of 60 FPS, which again means you should expect some smooth gameplay.
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- Page 1 [Introduction and Package]
- Page 2 [The Card and Specifications]
- Page 3 [Benchmarks - Test System Setup]
- Page 4 [Benchmarks - 3DMark 11]
- Page 5 [Benchmarks - Unigine Heaven Benchmark]
- Page 6 [Benchmarks - Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X. 2]
- Page 7 [Benchmarks - Mafia II]
- Page 8 [Benchmarks - Lost Planet 2]
- Page 9 [Benchmarks - Aliens vs. Predator]
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