When Titan released in February, it seemed likely that NVIDIA’s GeForce 700 series would be held off on for some time. Well, with today’s launch of the company’s mini-Titan – ahem, GTX 780, we’ve been proven wrong. Compared to the GTX 680, it offers a lot of +50%’s – but is it worth its $649 price tag?
Battlefield 3 is a rare treat when it comes to PC gaming. Rather than develop the game for the consoles first and then port over to the PC, DICE built the game with the PC in mind from the get-go. It’s graphically one of the most impressive games ever created, so it’s of little surprise that it finds itself in our testing.
Manual Run-through: Operation Guillotine (chapter 5) is the basis for our benchmarking here, as it features a lot of smoke, water, debris and is reliable to benchmark repeatedly. Our run starts us at the top of a hill, where we immediately rise up and run down it. We make our way down to the riverbed below, and end our run once we hit the first set of stairs.
What’s not too surprising here is seeing NVIDIA’s GTX 780 in front. What is, is seeing AMD’s HD 7970 GHz right behind it. When that card first launched, it didn’t perform quite this well, so it just goes to show how much improvement can be seen with a GPU over time based on drivers alone. It’s even more effective than overclocking, if not even more so.
In both of our multi-monitor tests, the GTX 780 outperforms the GTX 680 by 30%; at 1080p, it shows a 27% improvement.
For so many reasons, the DiRT series is one of the best out there for racing fans. Each game offers outstanding graphics and audio, excellent control and environments that are way too much fun to tear up. Showdown is an interesting beast, as it features destructive racing, but as we discovered in our review, it too is a ton of fun.
Manual Run-through: In our search for the perfect Showdown track to test with, we found that any of the snow levels offered the greatest stress on a GPU. The specific track we chose is the second race in the second tier, taking place in Colorado. We begin our FPS recording as soon as the countdown to the race begins, and end it as soon as we hit the finish line at the end of the three-lap race.
Aha! The first title to rain on NVIDIA’s parade is DiRT: Showdown. Across both of the resolutions that include the HD 7970, it either keeps close to the GTX 780 or surpasses it – both times, ever-so-slightly. Given this is a game with AMD’s logo all over it, it’s of little surprise that the HD 7970 is as good as it is here. We’ll see the favor returned soon with games that have NVIDIA badges on them. Can’t we just get some neutral gaming around here?