3DMark 11 Performance ReviewRHKCommander959 - December 26, 2010
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3DMark 11 is Futuremark's answer to DirectX 11 benchmarking. The overall feel is a comingling of the older versions for a quicker, cleaner benchmark that is infinitely free (versus the one time shot of Vantage). Testing the benchmark will be done in three steps to cover each performance level — Entry, Performance, and Extreme. All settings are left at default and all six tests are ran per level. The results are then posted from each video card below for comparison.
- Processor: Intel Core I7 920 200x18 3.6GHz
- Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P SE 1366
- Motherboard: ASUS P6T Deluxe OC Palm Edition
- Memory: Mushkin 996805 Redline PC312800 6-8-6-24 1600MHz
- Video Cards: Listed Below
- Power Supply: Mushkin 1000 watt Joule Modular power supply
- Hard Drive: 1 x Seagate 1TB SATA
- Optical Drive: LG DVD-RW
- OS: Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
- Case: Cooler Master HAF 932
Comparison Video Cards:
- NVIDIA GTS 450
- EVGA GTX 460 FTW
- ASUS ENGTX465
- NVIDIA GTX 480
- Galaxy GTX 470 GC
- BFG GTS 250 1GB OC
- Sapphire HD 5970 2GB
- Sapphire HD 5870
- Sapphire HD 5850 Toxic 2GB
- Sapphire HD 5770 VaporX
- Sapphire HD 5750 VaporX
- XFX HD 6850
- XFX HD 6870
- NVIDIA GTX 580
- NVIDIA GTX 570
After the straightforward installation users can input their registration code if they have one, and the program is ready to go. The first tab is titled Basic and contains the three predefined score-capable settings: Entry has low settings at 1024x600 resolution, Performance with moderate settings at 1280x720, and Extreme with high settings at 1920x1080. Either the demos or the tests can be run, or both together for the "Full Experience". The next tab is titled Advanced, which allows parts of the benchmark to be chosen for a custom run, as well as a decent amount of custom settings that can be selected. The presets are also available at the bottom and clicking these will set the advanced settings to the proper levels for each tier of testing. These options are only available to consumers who purchase the Advanced or Professional editions of 3DMark 11. The third tab is titled Results and will show any resulting scores, as well as scores that have been saved beforehand. The option to save new scores is also available, as well as viewing the results at 3DMark.com for comparison automatically after the testing is finished, or at the user's leisure. The last page has basic help information, including the key and a hotlink to 3DMark support. The language option is also located here, along with an option to unregister the installation.
It looks as though the dual-GPU HD 5970 still holds tight as the performance leader in this new benchmark from Futuremark. The single GPU cards do fall in order of their performance expectations, with the GTX 580 and HD 6970 as the top single GPU cards from NVIDIA and AMD, respectively.
Installation was really easy and forthwith, while both the install and the actual interface were very simple. Even the Advanced page was still quite easy to navigate — as long as users have some prior knowledge for game settings then it should not be a problem. The benchmark had a much more stable feeling than Vantage and was a much shorter benchmark — both very nice features for a benchmark. The return of free testing should help increase the popularity of 3DMark 11 compared to 3DMark Vantage, which was a one shot ordeal unless people paid for one of the upgraded editions. All in all, it looks like Futuremark learned from its experiences with Vantage and the reception it received and used that knowledge to greatly improve the new benchmark!