Testing Notes & Methodology

Our performance review is comprised of 22 graphics card configurations from AMD and Nvidia across all price ranges. The latest drivers were used for all cards and we overclocked the Intel Core i7-920 to 3.70GHz in an attempt to remove any CPU bottlenecks.

We used Fraps to measure frame rates during a minute of gameplay from the campaign mode right as the game kicks off from the level titled "By The Kings Will."

The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings was tested at three resolutions: 1680x1050, 1920x1200 and 2560x1600. We used the "Ultra Spec" quality preset with "UberSampling" both enabled and disabled. If you're wondering what the hell the latter detail is, we were too.

The developer says that it renders entire scenes numerous times in order to deliver the best possible textures, object details and anti-aliasing. Check out the comparison below (click for larger images).

It's worth noting that we found the High Spec quality preset delivered exactly the same performance as the Ultra Spec with UberSampling disabled on all graphics cards. Therefore we did not bother including the High Spec results. Furthermore, we also dropped the Medium Spec from our review and included some Low Spec results using a few lower-end graphics cards at 1400x900 and 1680x1050.

As mentioned earlier our results have been recorded using The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings first patch (v1.1), which not only improved the performance of both AMD and Nvidia graphics cards, but it finally allowed us to play in fullscreen. Before the patch, we were forced to play in windowed mode.

As usual, we've also included CPU scaling performance to see what kind of difference you can expect at various clock speed and to compare a range of popular AMD and Intel processors.

We'll be looking for an average of 60fps for stutter-free gameplay.

Test System Specs
- Intel Core i7-920 (Overclocked @ 3.70GHz)
- x3 2GB G.Skill DDR3 PC3-12800 (CAS 8-8-8-20)
- Asus P6T Deluxe (Intel X58)
- OCZ ZX Series 1250w
- Crucial RealSSD C300 256GB (SATA 6Gb/s)
- GeForce GTX 590 (3072MB)
- GeForce GTX 580 (1536MB)
- GeForce GTX 570 (1280MB)
- GeForce GTX 560 Ti (1024MB)
- GeForce GTX 550 Ti (1024MB)
- GeForce GTX 480 (1536MB)
- GeForce GTX 470 (1280MB)
- GeForce GTX 460 (1024MB)
- GeForce GTS 450 (1024MB)
- Radeon HD 6990 (4096MB)
- Radeon HD 6970 (2048MB)
- Radeon HD 6950 (2048MB)
- Radeon HD 6870 (1024MB)
- Radeon HD 6850 (1024MB)
- Radeon HD 5870 (2048MB)
- Radeon HD 5830 (1024MB)
- Radeon HD 6790 (1024MB)
- Radeon HD 6770 (1024MB)
- Radeon HD 6750 (1024MB)
- Radeon HD 6670 (1024MB)
- Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
- Nvidia Forceware 275.33
- ATI Catalyst 11.5b