by Rob Williams on December 29, 2016 in Systems
Achieving excellent 1080p gaming on a modestly-sized notebook for relatively cheap has long been a difficult proposition, but Eurocom’s Sky M5 R2 is up for the challenge. This $1,399 notebook comes packed with NVIDIA’s GTX 1060 and Intel’s i7-6700HQ – not just enough for 1080p, but good for 1440p to boot. Let’s dive in!
To repeat some of what was said on the last page:
All of this benchmarking is performed hands-on, so no DirectX 12 testing has been included here. Instead, we rely on the trusty Fraps, which is sure to be reaching its EOL soon thanks to its lack of support for the newer APIs (which includes Vulkan).
As with our regular GPU reviews, this page represents the “Best Playable” settings I could find in each game at each resolution. To make things easier, I take advantage of GeForce Experience’s auto-configuration tool to give me a baseline, and then tweak further if I think I could eke a bit more graphical detail out of the GTX 1060 and still retain great framerates. Note that all screenshots were taken at the configuration listed. G-SYNC is disabled by default as the external monitor used for testing doesn’t support it.
Surprisingly, Battlefield 1 can run at almost identical detail levels as I set for 1080p gaming – the big difference is with the framerate. At 1080p, I saw 79 FPS average, while bumping up to 1440p and decreasing the Effects Quality to Medium gave me an even 60 FPS.
For some reason, I ended up testing the 1440p Civilization VI test at slightly higher detail than I did at 1080p. It didn’t do too much to the framerate, though: ~50 FPS is more than enough for a game of this nature, but if you demand 60 FPS (or higher), the detail can be adjusted accordingly.
Not too much had to be decreased to get Crysis 3 to run at 60 FPS at 1440p. The only difference is a drop from Very High to High for both Shading and Post Processing.
While DOOM ran just fine at Ultra detail at 1080p, things had to be dropped to High for 1440p. Even still, the game looks downright amazing (and I admit, sometimes it’s hard to even tell the difference between High and Ultra – it’s just a great-looking game).
Rise of the Tomb Raider
|Rise of the Tomb Raider|
As mentioned before, RotTR is a brutal game on today’s hardware, so it’s no surprise that detail levels had to be decreased a fair bit to become playable at 1440p versus 1080p. I could have obsessed about the detail levels to hit 60 FPS, but it just wasn’t worth it. At 1440p, it’s just worth sacrificing a few frames for higher details.
Steep saw a handful of graphics drops versus the 1080p settings, but again, the game still looks good overall. Still, I’d probably quicker recommend sticking with 1080p, because not only is the detail better, the framerate is, too – and high FPS is pretty important for sports titles.
Watch Dogs 2
|Watch Dogs 2|
Watch Dogs 2 is another case of a game looking great even though detail levels need to be dropped. Shadows and Vegetation had to be decreased ever-so-slightly to High (from Ultra), and screenspace reflections had to be dropped from Very High to off.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
|The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt|
Finally, we wrap up game testing with the most beautiful (subjective) one of them all: Witcher 3. At 1080p, I ran NVIDIA Hairworks, but at 1440p, that was dropped in addition to a couple of other settings. To repeat myself again, the game still looks great at despite the detail drop, and just as important, the framerate is excellent.
It’s time for a look at system performance, battery-life, and then a wrap-up.