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by Rob Williams on December 10, 2010 in NVIDIA-Based GPU

To keep the mid to high-end GPU market interesting, NVIDIA has just launched its GeForce GTX 570, a replacement to the GTX 470. It’s priced a bit higher, at $349, but packs extra performance, improved power efficiency and lower temperatures. Is that enough to make it a winner in today’s tight market? We’re here to find that out.

Just Cause 2

Just Cause 2 might not belong to a well-established series of games, but with its launch, it looks like that might not be the case for long. The game offers not only superb graphics, but an enormous world to explore, and for people like me, a countless number of hidden items to find around it. During the game, you’ll be scaling skyscrapers, racing through jungles and fighting atop snow-drenched mountains. What’s not to like?

Just Cause 2

Manual Run-through: The level chosen here is part of the second mission in the game, “Casino Bust”. Our runthrough begins at the second-half of the level, which requires us to situate ourselves on top of a car and have our driver, Karl Blaine, speed us through part of the island to safety. This is a great mission for benchmarking as we get to see a lot of the landmass, even if some of it is at a distance.

AMD has a slight edge with Just Cause 2, and that’s evident in our results here. As a result of that, the GTX 570, which is technically more capable than an HD 5850, churns out the same amount of average FPS. Still, good performance for a card of this pricepoint.

Graphics Card
Best Playable
Min FPS
Avg. FPS
AMD HD 6870 1GB (CrossFireX)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
49
65.53
AMD HD 5970 2GB (Reference)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
46
58.998
AMD HD 6850 1GB (CrossFireX)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
40
55.17
AMD HD 5870 1GB (Sapphire)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, 4xAA
27
38.29
NVIDIA GTX 580 1536MB (Reference)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, SSAO Low, 0xAA
34
43.608
NVIDIA GTX 480 1536MB (Reference)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, SSAO Low, 0xAA
29
39.137
AMD HD 5850 1GB (ASUS)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, High Water, High Objects, 0xAA
27
38.468
NVIDIA GTX 570 1280MB (Reference)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, High Water, High Objects, SSAO Off, 0xAA
25
46.119
AMD HD 6870 1GB (Reference)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, High Water, High Objects, 0xAA
26
40.787
NVIDIA GTX 470 1280MB (EVGA)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, Medium Shadows, Medium Water, Medium Objects, SSAO Low, 0xAA
33
37.932
AMD HD 6850 1GB (Reference)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, High Water, High Objects, High-Res Shadows Off, SSAO Off, 0xAA
31
48.391
NVIDIA GTS 450 1GB (SLI)
2560×1600 – Max Details, Medium Shadows, Medium Water, Medium Objects, High-Res Shadows Off, SSAO Off, 0xAA
39
46.988
AMD HD 5830 1GB (Reference)
2560×1600 – Max Detail, Medium Shadows, Medium Water, Medium Objects, High-Res Shadows Off, SSAO Off, 0xAA
31
38.230
AMD HD 5770 1GB (Reference)
1920×1080 – Max Detail, High Water, High Objects, SSAO Medium, 0xAA
31
42.332
NVIDIA GTX 460 1GB (EVGA)
1920×1080 – Max Detail, Medium Shadows, Medium Water, Medium Objects, High-Res Shadows Off, SSAO Low, 0xAA
43
48.724
NVIDIA GTS 450 1GB (ASUS)
1920×1080 – Max Detail, Medium Shadows, Medium Water, Medium Objects, High-Res Shadows Off, SSAO Off, 0xAA
39
45.059
AMD HD 5750 1GB (Sapphire)
1920×1080 – Max Detail, Medium Shadows, Medium Water, Medium Objects, High-Res Shadows Off, SSAO Off, 0xAA
35
43.306

Though 31 FPS might be playable for some, it’s not going to be for many. To achieve playable framerates, we had to drop both the objects and water detail down to high, and then disable both anti-aliasing and SSAO. I had expected to be able to retain SSAO, even at a low setting, no cigar. Disabling it netted us an additional 8 FPS… too high of a number to ignore. That changed helped us reach an average of 46 FPS… much better.