Battlefield 3 Beta Performance Testing and Image Quality Evaluation - Day 1
More Results! GeForce GTX 460, Radeon HD 5850, GeForce 9800 GT (Low)
So our first results were pretty popular and as expected everyone wants us to test the game on THEIR hardware as well. Obviously we can't address everyone but I did have time this afternoon to test a few new cards to throw into the mix: the GeForce GTX 460 1GB, Radeon HD 5850 1GB and even a much older GeForce 9800 GT 512MB card (circa 2008).
Both the GTX 460 and HD 5850 card were run at the same settings as the previous cards earlier in this performance evaluation: 1920x1200 and Ultra quality settings. The 9800 GT would have none of that (as we expected) and as such you'll see some big fat zeros across the board for it. Let's take a quick look at the results:
The indoor results for these cards aren't too impressive as we only just barely break the 30 FPS mark with minimums in the high teens. Compared to the HD 6870 score (34.3 FPS) and the GTX 560 Ti (42.7 FPS) both of these older generation cards are proving to be less than ideal.
The outdoor scores do go down to the mid-20s for the average frame rate making this pretty much less than playable for a high speed shooter. Obviously you can back off on the quality settings (don't forget to restart the game) and get some added performance that way, but for the best experience in BF3 in terms of visual fidelity you are going to want to upgrade some hardware.
You noticed I glossed over the 9800 GT results - I was able to get average frame rates in the mid-30s with it at much lower (1680x1050, Low quality) and would have likely preferred to drop another resolution setting to get a smoother FPS experience. But obviously, even though we were able to achieve some 30+ frame rates, the image quality does take a noticeable dive at the Low settings.
Here are a few examples, and be sure to compare them to the screenshots we took here on the Ultra quality settings on higher end hardware.
Obviously avoiding the "Low" settings is what you want but if you can't afford an upgrade now, at least you know can get by. But if you do take a look at those Ultra screenshots you can what quality of gameplay you would likely be moving up to if you do decide to shell out the cash for a new GPU. I really think that a good target for most of our readers would be the "High" settings and as such we plan on putting together a "guide" of sorts with recommended components at a few different resolutions. (Coming soon!)
We have more testing coming soon hopefully including results from the Caspian Border map that includes 64 players and vehicles!! Stay tuned!