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Early DirectX 12 game performance strongly favors AMD

By Scorpus ยท 39 replies
Aug 18, 2015
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  1. The first DirectX 12 benchmark based on a real, upcoming game is now available, and the guys at PC Perspective have posted some very interesting results based on their testing of Nvidia and AMD graphics cards.

    The benchmark is based on the game Ashes of the Singularity, a massive real-time sci-fi strategy game developed by Oxide Games and Stardock that's for release next year. The game uses the Nitrous engine, which has been developed to take full advantage of DirectX 12 capabilities, especially the increased number of draw calls per second and better utilization of CPU and GPU resources.

    All testing was performed using a $500 Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 and a $430 AMD Radeon R9 390X at a range of resolutions and different CPUs. Ashes of the Singularity supports DirectX 11 and DirectX 12 so both were tested.

    When the benchmark was run using DirectX 11, the GTX 980 was anywhere from 25 to 90 percent faster than the R9 390X. However, when the game was run in DirectX 12 instead, the gap between the two GPUs shrunk dramatically, with the R9 390X either tying with or beating the GTX 980 in most situations.

    There are a couple of interesting things to note from these results. First, Nvidia's DirectX 11 drivers appear to be far superior to AMD's, as there wasn't a particularly significant jump in performance on Nvidia cards when the low-overhead benefits of DirectX 12 kicked in. There were some performance gains, especially on weak CPUs, but nothing overly amazing.

    On AMD hardware, using DirectX 12 provided huge performance gains, allowing the company's cheaper R9 390X to essentially match the GTX 980. The jump in performance from the R9 390X is very significant, and shows that AMD's hardware, held back by inefficient DirectX 11 drivers could be a lot more capable than we first thought.

    Nvidia was quick to dismiss the Ashes of the Singularity benchmark results, saying the game is “is [not] a good indicator of overall DirectX 12 gaming performance.” While they do have a point – this is just one benchmark on one game engine showing the differences between DirectX 11 and DirectX 12 – real-world gaming benchmarks are typically far more indicative of real-world performance than synthetics like 3DMark.

    PC Per's full set of results and analysis is well worth the read, so if you're interested in DirectX 12, you should head over there and read their article. It should be especially interesting for Radeon owners cards, where DirectX 12 seems to be having the biggest impact.

    Permalink to story.

  2. Cryio

    Cryio TS Addict Posts: 213   +75

    AMD's driver is back in the game !

    Because their GPUs never left us :D
    oranuro, Jad Chaar and Evernessince like this.
  3. yRaz

    yRaz Nigerian Prince Posts: 2,759   +1,982

    Let's see how this plays out, both GPU makers switch back and fourth depending on the game. This could also be nVidia not taking DX12 seriously right now since it will probably be at least a few years before we start seeing games using it. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

    Now I just need nVidia to release Pascal so I can finally upgrade from my GTX 680, it's not even used in benchmarks anymore :/
  4. madboyv1

    madboyv1 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,529   +420

    I'm still in the Nvidia camp due to their cards generally being more power and thermal efficient, but that's a pretty massive jump for AMD cards (on this one game), and a welcome one. Go go competition! Can't wait to see more benchmarks in the future and continual drive maturity, but it's too bad all the game I currently play run off of DX11 and currently favor Nvidia cards... :p
    amstech likes this.
  5. amstech

    amstech IT Overlord Posts: 2,096   +1,260

    The title is catchy but incorrect.
    Should read 'Early AotS performance indicates strong AMD performance with DX12'.
    JLingana likes this.
  6. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,661   +2,982

    I think the funniest part about all this is that Nvidia Fanyboys were saying that Nvidia has the more complete DX12 support.

    One could try to argue this as a one game thing but there's a problem with that logic. A game company has nothing to gain from optimizing AMD only DX12, especially given the age of DX12.

    Could also be that Nvidia has never been one to adapt new tech quickly.
  7. yRaz

    yRaz Nigerian Prince Posts: 2,759   +1,982

    I try to be unbiased when it comes to hardware, but the it was mostly driver problems I had with my X1900XT has left a bad taste in my mouth. I'm sure that they have improved considerably over the years, but I've become so familiar with the nVidia ecosystem that that alone makes me pick their cards. I built a rig for my friend with a 4850 in it and he seems to be very happy with it so I guess I am a bit bias. The only problem that I had with nVidia is when I bought my my 8800GT's and they didn't have DX10.1 support so I got some strange artifacts in a few different games. But, hell, an SLI setup that only cost me $450 was too good to pass up. They were monsters in their day :)

    Currently it's just too early to see who is better at what and why. Until we see real world performance there really isn't too much to talk about on either side.
    Evernessince likes this.
  8. Nobina

    Nobina TS Evangelist Posts: 1,814   +1,329

    It's just one game but I do hope this will apply to other games aswell, better for everybody.
  9. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,661   +2,982

    Agreed. I'm pretty neutral as well but I hate it when fanboys of either side start talking without thinking. Fermi was called a space heater by AMD fanboys and ironically now they are the power hungry cards. The R9 200 and R9 300 series are supposed to have an inferior DX12 implementation to Nvidia 970 and 980, according to fan boys. We'll just have to wait and see how DX12 plays out. The most interesting part for me is going to be how CPU performance is going to be affected. It could make AMD viable for high end builds again.
  10. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,482   +978

    AMD's drivers are definitely improving! Nvidia needs to suck up its ego and focus more on DX12. I wonder why the 390X performed so poorly in DX11 mode.
  11. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,435   +601

    For High end gaming builds only.

    For anyone that uses applications that don't fall under the gaming banner you are still better off with intel.
  12. JLingana

    JLingana TS Rookie

    Agreed! That would be much more accurate. To me the results look more like a win for more consistent performance on nVidia.
  13. Axle Grease

    Axle Grease TS Addict Posts: 132   +53

    This benchmark shows these cards to be fairly even DX12 performers. Does this mean AMD's DX11 driver architecture was garbage in the first place?
  14. SuperVeloce

    SuperVeloce TS Booster Posts: 133   +34

    Ugh, the age old story. Capable radeon hardware paired with subpar software/drivers...
  15. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,435   +601

    Yes pretty much AMD's hardware is as good as Nvidia's it was just being held back by the drivers.

    Now they just need to get to Maxwell 2 power levels and they are back in the game.
  16. misor

    misor TS Evangelist Posts: 1,389   +296

    Did microsoft's windows 10 directx 12 feature save AMD's 455?
  17. mrjgriffin

    mrjgriffin TS Evangelist Posts: 349   +163

    Hmmm. seems amd may have had a trick up their sleeve this whole time :p. I currently have a gtx 980 and my rig but I do favor amd video cards over nvidia because of the features the CCC has when it comes to online video or video playback in general because im a huge media buff moreso than I am a gamer. its good to see amd having a slight advantage over something instead of nvidia being the king as usual.
  18. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,840   +1,267

    Oxide and its Nitrous engine have a partnership with AMD, and were the flagship demo for Mantle. It is no random coincidence that Star Swarm ran less than optimally on Nvidia hardware until the company got to grips with the code with the 337.50 driver.


    I'd probably reserve judgement until the game launches...or at least reaches beta....because if this very early access is indicative of the performance of not just a single game, but DX12 gaming as a whole as you seem to think, AMD's CPUs just got a whole lot more irrelevent...win some, lose some...
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2015
    Evernessince likes this.
  19. Peter Farkas

    Peter Farkas TS Evangelist Posts: 332   +148

    It could also be a shitty dx12 driver for nvidia....
    let's see when both nvidia and amd have proper drivers published...
  20. smoken

    smoken TS Rookie

    DUH!!!! all the consoles run AMD so the software is going to favor them.........face it most of the games over this console round will be out for PC
  21. smoken

    smoken TS Rookie

    770 are and its the same GPU.......
  22. ddg4005

    ddg4005 TS Guru Posts: 392   +58

    An impressive gain for Radeon GPUs. I'm sure NVIDIA will release updated drivers that wring every last drop of performance out of their hardware, particularly the Maxwell series.
  23. yRaz

    yRaz Nigerian Prince Posts: 2,759   +1,982

    most I really see now are 780's and 780 ti's, not so much the 770 anymore. Before you know it, it'll be in a nursing home waiting for it's grandchildren to call.
  24. Rage3D

    Rage3D TS Member Posts: 20

  25. Dimitriid

    Dimitriid TS Booster Posts: 38   +37

    No this is not because of bad DX11 drivers. You are clearly repeating what you saw in some comments which has no basis in reality and you needed only to look at the charts: the DX11 results behave exactly as any other DX11 game and the DX12 games give a significant advantage ONLY ON STRONG PROCESSORS. This means that this has nothing to do with GPU utilization but enabling better CPU utilization since on weak CPUs the DX12 gains over DX11 are almost all but gone.

    This means that the DX11 drivers are just fine but the extra performance gains come from the CPU now being utilized, that doesn't means that there's any problem with AMD and DX11 drivers, that just means that the OP writing the article's a ****ing ***** who can't read and interpret results and just regurgitates other uniformed opinions not based on the ****ing tests.

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