Graphics Card Reviews

Gigabyte GTX 950 Xtreme Graphics Card Review

« A Closer Look at the Gigabyte GTX 950 Xtreme Edition Video Card | Gigabyte GTX 950 Xtreme Performance »

Test System and Testing Procedures

Processor Intel Core i7-4770K (Retail)
CPU Cooler ThermalTake Water 3.0 Extreme with Noctua NT-H1 thermal compound
Motherboard MSI Z97M Gaming
Memory Patriot Viper 3 “Black Mamba” 2x8GB DDR3 2100 MHz CL11
Storage Samsung 240 EVO 256GB SSD
Case DimasTech Mini v1 test bench
Drivers AMD Catalyst 15.7.1, NVIDIA 355.65
Video Card(s) Gigabyte GTX 950 Xtreme, MSI GTX 960 Gaming 2G, Zotac GTX 960 4G, Sapphire Radeon R9 280 3G,
Power Color Turbo Duo Radeon R9 270 2G.
Monitor Monoprice CrystalPro 28″ LED TN panel 4K 60Hz monitor – Resolution set at 1920×1080
Operating System Windows 8.1 x64 Ultimate with latest patches and updates

Latest working BIOS, updates and drivers were used at the time of the review. Each test was conducted at least three times for accuracy. All benchmarks were performed at a resolution of 1920 x 1080 unless otherwise specified.

I chose to use a card from the $150(ish) class as a comparison as well as two cards from the next level. One card was chosen from AMD and one from Nvidia. We currently are using the 200 series of cards as we don’t have the 300 series from AMD as of yet. For this review, I tested at 1920×1080

The preset in game settings (medium, high, ultra, etc..) were used, and neither AMD nor Nvidia specific settings were altered.

Testing Software and Methodology

Graphics quality settings were not changed between the resolutions.

  1. 3DMark Firestrike – One run Per GPU
    1. Standard, Extreme and Ultimate with no custom options.
  2. Alien Isolation-
    1. Preset at Ultra. Built in benchmark used. Recorded with Fraps.
  3. Battlefield Hardline
    1. Ultra Quality settings
    2. 5 minute game play run on Gator Bait level.
  4. Bioshock Infinite
    1. Adrenaline Benchmark tool – Ultra Quality + DDOF
  5.  Crysis 3
    1. System Spec – Very High
    2. AA- SMAA High (4x)
    3. Texture Resolution Very High
    4. Advanced Graphics – Very High
    5. AF 16x
    6. Motion Blur Amount-medium
    7. 5 Minute game play run after the introduction.
  6. FarCry 4
    1. Graphics Quality Ultra
    2. 5 minute game play. From Arjay’s house on the cliff – fly across the river in the wing suit. Once we land, grab a car and head to Pagan Min’s palace.
  7. Grand Theft Auto V
    1. All options set to their maximum. AO & Tesselation set to High.
    2. 5 Minute game play in story mode. Start at the safe house in Vinewood hills and drive to the air port and back.
  8. Metro Last Light Redux
    1. Built in Benchmark.
    2. Direct X 11
    3. Quality Very High
    4. Texture Filtering AF 16x
    5. Motion Blur Normal
    6. Tesselation Very High
    7. SSAA and Advance PhysX were disabled.
  9. Shadows of Mordor
    1. Graphic Quality Preset to Ultra
    2. Max FPS set to No Limit.
    3. 5 minutes game play after tutorial. Run through the large pit after jumping off the tower and kill as many enemies in the time limit.
  10. TESV:Sky Rim
    1. Graphics Quality preset set to Ultra.
    2. 5 Minute game play after the dragon attacks and you gain control of the character.
  11. Tomb Raider
    1. Adrenaline Benchmark tool- Ultimate Quality
  12. Witcher 3
    1. Graphics Quality set to Ultra.
    2. 5 minutes of game play after getting to White Orchard. We explored the town and the map to find as many enemies in the time allotted.

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Tom Brokaw

Tom is a network and computer hardware enthusiast. He has been reviewing hardware products around for various sites around the net since 1999. He has modded a few cases back in the day.
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