Real World Gaming
For real world gaming, we elected to test with Call of Duty: Black Ops. We're working on a separate story that will test new games in greater detail to see just how fast Lucid Virtu technology is. In order to keep the compabitility with results, we'll solely rely on our MSI Z68A GD80 B3 motherboard.
Call of Duty: Black Ops
One of the most highly anticipated, and consequently most highly purchased games of all times, COD Black Ops is a game most are familiar with. We have chosen to include this game in our suite largely due to its sheer penetration in the gaming market, most gamers either own the game or have played the game, and those that haven't have most likely heard about it. While this test will fall under the real world gaming benchmark description, the "shooter on rails" moniker that the COD series have earned is well deserved in this case as there is generally only one way through a level. This real world benchmark will prove to be the closest to fixed-variable aspect of a synthetic benchmark. High framerates are all around in Call of Duty: Black Ops and Lucid Virtu continus to drop a frame when compared to native approach
Black Ops follows the exploits of its main character Mason throughout 1960's including settings in Cuba, Vietnam, Soviet Russia and more. True to it's namesake, the mix of missions are "black bag" or clandestine operations. For benchmarking purposes we play through the first full level of the game.
Launching into a game played out much the same as launching a benchmark, the transition from iGPU to discrete graphics was imperceptible and the frame rates were very close to the standard discrete performance. Application PerformancePCMark Vantage
PCMark Vantage is the current iteration of Futuremark's full system test suite. Instead of specifically testing graphics, PCMark evaluates the entire computer system based on separate usage scenarios that are designed to replicate real world conditions. These Suites run the range from TV and Music to Gaming and Productivity. BSN utilizes the 64bit version of PCMark for testing purposes.PCMark Vantage Showed MSI Z68A opening "a Can of Whoopass" over previous P67 chipset. A sign of just how fast Sandy Bridge can become with a proper chipset?
The MSI Z68A-GD80 clearly bests its older brother in the form of the Intel DP67BG by a strong margin. With the larger scope of PCMark's test suite, could this be an indication of next-gen dominance?Sisoft Sandra 2011
Sandra is one of the go-to benchmarks when looking for a strict performance indicator. No flashy animations and arbitrary numbers. The full Sandra suite is capable of testing many of the PC's subsystems including CPU, memory and storage.
The P67 chipset of the Intel DP67BG puts up a strong fight in this test and even manages to narrowly beat the Z68A-GD80 in the Whetstone measurement.
The DP67BG keeps up the fight solidly beating the new Z68 chipset in memory bandwidth performance.Cinebench
Cinebench is designed to illustrate the potential performance of a CPU or GPU when using Maxon's Cinema 4D software. Cinebench is comprised to two separate tests, one for testing CPU performance and the other for testing the OpenGL performance of a video card. The tests are designed to replicate different aspects of 3D animation usage scenarios.
The Z68A performed well in both tests. The two chipsets were neck and neck and the DP67BG's narrow victory on the OpenGL tests can most likely be attributed to Virtu's small overhead.PCMark 7
The folks over at Futuremark have been hard at work designing new benchmarks to punish…err test the latest and greatest computer hardware. While we cannot show you the results of the PCMark7 test until it is officially launch on Thursday May 12th, we can tell you that they have done a great job with the new benchmark. Check back on Thursday as we will update the test results once the embargo is lifted. Power Draw
One of the benefits of being able to dynamically switch GPU's is power efficiency. While many of the newer iterations of graphics cards have made strides in terms of idle power draw they can rarely compete with integrated graphics. It is great to have gaming horsepower when you need it, but no one wants to pay for power draw when a system is sitting idle. To test power draw, the test system was hooked up to an Eaton 5PX UPS (look for a full BSN* review of this UPS in the coming weeks) that features voltage and amp draw monitor on a per receptacle basis. Idle temperatures were recorded after the system had sat for idle for 30 minutes on the desktop. Lucid Virtu Power testing in idle gives significant performance difference on a system level
As stated above, discrete graphics simply cannot match the low idle power draw of integrated graphics, but that is to be expected. What we do see here is that the idle power draw of both cards is diminished when running under Virtu. It appears that Virtu is able to power down the discrete cards further than they would be able to on their own.
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