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Mafia II - The PhysX difference

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
Mafia II - The PhysX difference






PhysX on!







PhysX off!






Hi all,

I wanted to test the difference between using a dedicated PhysX card and using one GPU for doing both. Now I know there are already a lot of reviews out there that compare different types of dedicated PhysX card vs using a single GPU but I just wanted to test it out in actual gameplay* not the benchmark (the benchmark gives inconsistent results). I also tested how overclocking the PhysX card affects the overall performance.

Testing setup used:

Hardware

CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 @ 3.7GHz
GPU: GeForce GTX 470 753/1506/1700
GPU: GeForce 9800 GTX+ 738/1836/1100 | **774/1890/1150 OC
MOBO: XFX 780i 3-way SLI
RAM: 2x 2GB Corsair XMS2 DDR2 800 4-4-4-12
PSU: Corsair TX 750W


Software

Driver set: FW 265.90 Quadro

Game settings

Resolution: 1920 x 1200
Anti-Aliasing: 4x SGSAA
Anisotropic Filtering: 16x
Apex PhysX: High
Ambient Occlusion: On
Geometry Detail: High
Shadow Quality: High
Vsync: Off

I used Fraps to record the FPS as well as to calculate the minimum, average and maximum FPS.



* The level at which I ran the benchmarks is shown in the screenshot
** OC clocks, these are ROPs, CUDA cores and memory frequency respectively

<space>

Edited by TheBlademaster01 - 1/18/11 at 6:41am
post #2 of 27
Thread Starter 
GTX 470 vs GTX 470 & 9800GTX+ dedicated:




GTX 470 & 9800GTX+ OC included:



Apex PhysX disabled results included:




And for those who prefer bar graphs















---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Conclusion:


The kind of PhysX added in this title, APEX, is used to simulate the movement of clothing in this game. The regular PhysX is used to simulate the movement of small particles after an explosion or gunshot. Obviously as seen in the results these operations are pretty taxing on your system, my estimate would be mostly because of APEX.

By enabling PhysX you get a ~25% performance hit on a GTX 470 (as seen in the charts). That's a fairly big hit on overall gameplay since the minimum FPS tends to get in the 20 FPS area. Getting a seperate card to offload the main card isn't exactly a bad idea in this case. Please note that this could be different in other games since those don't always utilise APEX! Using a 9800GTX+ as a dedicated PhysX card can decrease the performance hit by a good amount. When at stock speeds the 9800 GTX+ decreases the performance hit to about 9% and when OC'ed the performance hit is decreased to a mere 6% (note: these are all average FPS comparisons).

Also keep in mind that using a weak card as dedicated physX card can crap your performance over using a single card. As reference for you guys, I've seen the GPU usage on my 9800GTX+ go to about 52%. This is with 128 CUDA cores. I've also tested my GTX 285 in the past and that one had 27% usage at times. To give you a bit of an IQ comparison, there are two screenshots in the OP, one with PhysX off and the other with PhysX on.


<space>

Edited by TheBlademaster01 - 1/18/11 at 6:45am
post #3 of 27
looking forward to your results
    
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post #4 of 27
Thread Starter 
Results are up now
post #5 of 27
yep same hing I get.
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post #6 of 27
Thanks for posting in my other thread. Mafia 2 was the first game I tested when I plugged in my GTX 260 as dedicated PhysX =)
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post #7 of 27
This makes me even more excited to play Mafia II .
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post #8 of 27
Awesome, +rep
    
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post #9 of 27
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the positive feedback guys
post #10 of 27
very nice

rep
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