How We Judge Performance
The way we judge performance on video cards is changing now that I'm stationed in this position, as we're not going to sit here and judge a $199 card, or two of them in SLI for $400 at 4K. But, we will evaluate them at that resolution. Firstly, I wouldn't recommend GeForce GTX 960s in SLI anyway, but we'll get to that soon.
Any and all judgment on this SLI setup is going to come from the SLI scaling, overall performance, overall scaling at various resolutions, noise, price and power consumption.
Performance at 1080p
Starting with Battlefield 4, I didn't expect this level of performance. Our single ZOTAC GeForce GTX 960 AMP! Edition performed well for the most part, where on the Ultra preset (without AA enabled) we were seeing an average of 70FPS. Throwing another GTX 960 into the mix and enabling SLI saw this number jump by almost 100%, to a huge 127FPS average. This is an incredible level of scaling, for one of the best looking games on the PC right now.
GRID: Autosport and Metro: Last Light didn't see any additional performance. Thief received a huge performance increase, jumping from 42FPS on the single GTX 960 to a huge 76FPS in SLI. Sniper Elite 3 went from 93FPS to 139FPS, while Tomb Raider scaled from 55FPS to 88FPS. BioShock Infinite also jumped by a huge percentage, from 57FPS to a whopping 115FPS.
Performance at 1440p
The same great scaling in Battlefield 4 at 1920x1080 passes through to 2560x1440, where we start off with Battlefield 4 at Medium detail at 1440p. On the single GTX 960 we were seeing a great average of 86FPS, but in SLI we jump right up to a huge 153FPS. On the Ultra preset, the same performance jump is seen as we move from 59FPS to 113FPS average. Massive results, something that you simply can't complain about here with two GTX 960s in SLI.
We may not have seen much SLI scaling at 1080p in Metro: Last Light, but at 1440p we jump from 35FPS average to 55FPS. Shadow of Mordor sees a nice increase from 27FPS to 39FPS, while BioShock Infinite leaps from 46FPS to 82FPS. DiRT Showdown speeds up from 70FPS average to a huge 115FPS, too.
Performance at 4K
Performance at 4K with the two GeForce GTX 960s in SLI is something I knew would be hard, but we did it anyway. Going through our suite of benchmarks, we see some great scaling, but for the most part, the additional performance really falls off a cliff, as does the reasoning behind getting another GTX 960 if you're gaming at 4K.
Starting with Battlefield 4 on its Medium preset, we have 51FPS on our single GTX 960, while the SLI setup boosts it up to 83FPS. This is great at 4K, as you're getting over that magic 60FPS mark. For $400, these two GPUs kick some serious ass at 4K and BF4. Turning up the detail to Ultra (again, with AA disabled), we see an average of 44FPS on our single GTX 960, while the second GTX 960 sees 55FPS average. Not so good when the details are cranked.
GRID: Autosport on Ultra scales well, from 42FPS on the single GTX 960 to 55FPS, while Metro: Last Light jumps from 31FPS to 41FPS. Shadow of Mordor is quickly becoming the most stressful game on our benchmarking lineup, with 28FPS on the single card and 44FPS with SLI - a nice improvement. Sniper Elite 3 enjoys SLI with 37FPS on the single GTX 960 and a huge 59FPS on SLI. BioShock Infinite enjoys the second card, jumping from 39FPS to 60FPS while DiRT Showdown slides from 38FPS to 63FPS.
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- Page 1 [Introduction]
- Page 2 [Testing Method & Test System Configuration]
- Page 3 [Synthetic Benchmarks (3DMark and Heaven)]
- Page 4 [Game Benchmarks (1080p)]
- Page 5 [Game Benchmarks (1440p)]
- Page 6 [Game Benchmarks (4K)]
- Page 7 [Game Performance Summary]
- Page 8 [Power Consumption and Sound Testing]
- Page 9 [Final Thoughts]