Benchmarks: CPU Performance
No doubt someone is going to point out that we tested CPU performance at a high resolution and let us have it. Well before that person gets all excited, pay attention to what is said next. The reason we tested at 1440p and not 1080p as we usually do is due to the fact that Dark Souls III is frame capped at 60fps. From our GPU results we know when paired with the Core i7-6700K, the GeForce GTX 980 Ti is still limited by this frame cap at 1440p.
By testing at 1440p we are no doubt closer to the 60fps frames than we would be at 1080p with the frame cap removed. Granted this is a GPU bottleneck, but by running closer to the GPU's limits any reduction in system performance will likely be more noticed with the 980 Ti on a knife edge.
Either way, with the 60fps frame cap being comfortably reached by the 980 Ti at both 1080p and 1440p, it really shouldn't make a big difference which resolution we use for testing.
Those running a Core i5, Core i7 or highly clocked FX processor will have no trouble reaching the 60fps cap providing they have a capable GPU. The Core i3-4360 and FX-8350 delivered virtually the same performance as both dipped down to 52fps.
The slowest processor tested was the dual-core Pentium G3258 and when clocked at just 3.2GHz performance doesn't look too bad with a minimum of 37fps, but unfortunately with a constant 100% load on the CPU there was quite a bit of stuttering. The quad-core Athlon X4 860K was slightly faster, though it only played slightly better in my opinion as there was still quite a bit of stuttering and CPU load never dropped below 90%.
Clocking the Core i7-6700K all the way down to 2.5GHz didn't stop this processor from reaching the 60fps cap so not much else can be said here.
Despite the solid Core i7 scaling, the AMD FX-9590 doesn't look that impressive. In fact, at 4.5GHz it is still unable to max out Dark Souls III with a minimum frame rate of 55fps.
Overclocking the Pentium G3258 to 4.5GHz fixed the stuttering issues we were having at the stock speeds and allowed for a much better 55fps average with a 49fps minimum. Around the same performance we saw from the FX-9590 clocked at 3.5GHz.