|ATI Radeon HD5450 HTPC Video Card|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Video Cards|
|Written by Bruce Normann|
|Thursday, 04 February 2010|
Page 7 of 16
Video Card Testing Methodology
This is the beginning of a new era for testing at Benchmark Reviews. With the remarkably quick adoption rate of Windows7, and given the prolonged and extensive pre-release testing that occurred on a global scale, there are compelling reasons to switch all testing to this new, and highly anticipated, operating system. Overall performance levels of Windows 7 have been favorably compared to Windows XP, and there is solid support for the 64-bit version, something enthusiasts have been anxiously awaiting for several years.
Our site polls and statistics indicate that the over 90% of our visitors use their PC for playing video games, and practically every one of you are using a screen resolutions mentioned above. Since all of the benchmarks we use for testing represent different game engine technology and graphic rendering processes, this battery of tests will provide a diverse range of results for you to gauge performance on your own computer system. All of the benchmark applications are capable of utilizing DirectX 10, and that is how they were tested. Some of these benchmarks have been used widely for DirectX 9 testing in the XP environment, and it is critically important to differentiate between results obtained with different versions. Each game behaves differently in DX9 and DX10 formats. Crysis is an extreme example, with frame rates in DirectX 10 only about half what was available in DirectX 9.
At the start of all tests, the previous display adapter driver is uninstalled and trace components are removed using Driver Cleaner Pro. We then restart the computer system to establish our display settings and define the monitor. Once the hardware is prepared, we begin our testing. According to the Steam Hardware Survey published at the time of Windows 7 launch, the most popular gaming resolution is 1280x1024 (17-19" standard LCD monitors) closely followed by 1024x768 (15-17" standard LCD). Given the mainstream user base that this card is aimed at, we limited our testing to 1280x1024 and the commonly encountered wide-screen format of 1680x1050 (20-22" wide-screen LCD). Even at these modest resolutions, our low-end cards that we dug out of storage struggled mightily with the modern game titles we normally test with.
Each benchmark test program begins after a system restart, and the very first result for every test will be ignored since it often only caches the test. This process proved extremely important in the World in Conflict benchmarks, as the first run served to cache maps allowing subsequent tests to perform much better than the first. Each test is completed five times, the high and low results are discarded, and the average of the three remaining results is displayed in our article.
Video Card Test Products
Now we're ready to begin testing video game performance these video cards, so please continue to the next page where we start off with our 3DMark Vantage results.