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Benchmarks: The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Battlefield 4
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is a stunning-looking video game with great textures that doesn't consume a great deal of VRAM. Testing at 1080p provided some rather interesting results, though we were surprised by the weak 1% performance of the R9 380.
Jumping up to 2560x1600 the 4GB version of the GTX 960 and R9 380 showed a slight advantage over the 2GB models and we are using up to 3.5GBs of VRAM when available in this test. Still the slight performance advantage of the 4GB cards is made pointless by the fact that frame rates are so low the game would be unplayable.
Turning Nvidia HairWorks off gives us a solid performance boost on all cards, but this did nothing to increase the amount of VRAM required.
Finally at 2560x1600 with HairWorks disabled all graphics cards are able to deliver playable performance, though in the case of the GTX 960, only just. Importantly here we see that the 4GB 960 and 380 cards are no faster than their cheaper 2GB versions.
As the oldest game we have tested with, Battlefield 4 still looks great but isn't that heavy on VRAM. As such we see no advantages from using higher capacity cards in this game at 1080p using the ultra-quality preset.
Even at 2560x1600 we are unable to max out the VRAM on most of these cards as the game only used 2.2GBs in our test. Although that does exceed the 2GB capacity of the GTX 960 and R9 380 2GB cards, it wasn't enough to warrant using a 4GB model.
Lowering the quality preset to high certainly helped to boost performance of all cards tested, but it obviously did nothing to push the limits of VRAM usage.
Clearly fans of Battlefield 4 or similar era games won't have to worry about the 4GB versions of the GTX 960 or R9 380.