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  #21 (permalink)  
Old March 14, 2013, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by mattlef View Post
Sky,
Well written article. I have a few questions however.
1) Do you think that you're severely underplaying the value equation here?
From my testing, SLI had very little, if any problems with single screen use. The Profiles are quite up to date etc, so i believe that the old issues are exactly that, old issues. Please note i said single screen. I don't have any experience with multi screen sli gaming.
SLI still displays single screen issues in Dirt Showdown, Assassin's Creed and Hitman. To me, those issues devalue it to a certain extent, much like the problems I mentioned with Crossfire.

Also, the term "value" has different meanings to different people and I think I made that quite evident in the conclusion. For some, having a worry-free experience that's completely smooth is more than worth the additional cost associated with TITAN. For others who don't care about onscreen fluidity or don't notice stutter, TITAN is a poor value.

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2) Outside of time concerns, why didn't you include the 660ti in this review? I'm wondering if the results of this review would have been different if Titan was compared against a setup aprox 50-60% its cost. I understand that you cant review everything however, given the cost/performance value here, the content presented... this seems to be missing something. Was this at someones request?

I am a believer that had these two issues/questions been reviewed, we would see a completely different conclusion.
Time didn't even factor into that decision. Adding a GTX 660 Ti would have necessitated the addition of AMD's HD 7870 as well. A sit stands, with only three cards the frame time charts are quite confusing and adding more cards would have made the situation worse.

You also have to remember that both the GTX 660 Ti SLI and HD 7870 CF would have pretty much mirrored what their higher end compatriots achieved while exasperating the numerous issues.

I may revisit this with the two setups mentioned above. Maybe.
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Last edited by SugarJ; March 14, 2013 at 09:55 AM.
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  #22 (permalink)  
Old March 14, 2013, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by SKYMTL View Post
SLI still displays single screen issues in Dirt Showdown, Assassin's Creed and Hitman. To me, those issues devalue it to a certain extent, much like the problems I mentioned with Crossfire.

Also, the term "value" has different meanings to different people and I think I made that quite evident in the conclusion. For some, having a worry-free experience that's completely smooth is more than worth the additional cost associated with TITAN. For others who don't care about onscreen fluidity or don't notice stutter, TITAN is a poor value.
Okay, I agree with your assessment here. Value is a loose term that can be subject to interpretation. A cost/Performance chart might paint a clear picture of how they compete relative to each other.

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Originally Posted by SKYMTL View Post
[2) Outside of time concerns, why didn't you include the 660ti in this review? I'm wondering if the results of this review would have been different if Titan was compared against a setup aprox 50-60% its cost. I understand that you cant review everything however, given the cost/performance value here, the content presented... this seems to be missing something. Was this at someones request?

I am a believer that had these two issues/questions been reviewed, we would see a completely different conclusion


Time didn't even factor into that decision. Adding a GTX 660 Ti would have necessitated the addition of AMD's HD 7870 as well. A sit stands, with only three cards the frame time charts are quite confusing and adding more cards would have made the situation worse.

You also have to remember that both the GTX 660 Ti SLI and HD 7870 CF would have pretty much mirrored what their higher end compatriots achieved while exasperating the numerous issues.

I may revisit this with the two setups mentioned above. Maybe.
I agree that the frame time charts would have been very "cloudy" and illegible. However Average frame time could be a standard benchmark on which to compare?

I agree that the 660ti SLI and 7870 CF options would mirror the 670 and 7950 results, and that's the point. These cards can be had for even less than their brothers. This severely affects the price/performance value equation.

Based on my personal results, i believe that titan would be seen in a different light if compared against these two, and would therefore change the results of the review in a different direction.
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  #23 (permalink)  
Old March 14, 2013, 10:03 AM
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I think what SKYMTL is trying to highlight is that there are different performance standards. Are you looking for Max FPS, or minimum frame time standard deviation? They are different, and can have a big effect on the end user experience.

SKYMTL, is it possible to stretch the charts shown on this page:NVIDIA GTX TITAN vs. SLI & Crossfire
What I'm asking is that instead of charting by frame number, you chart by time so that the comparison at any specific time is more immediately visible? It might make the charts easier to read, rather than have 3 different x-axis lengths on the same chart.
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  #24 (permalink)  
Old March 14, 2013, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by SKYMTL View Post
Yes and no. The main issue is the polling rate within the FRAPS utility when it comes to polling framerates. You see, if it logged framerates at the same speed it does frame TIMES, the results would be much more accurate. Remember, there is a distinct difference between Frames per SECOND and framerate / frame times.

Essentially, frame times can translate directly into framerates but frames per second simply averages out the framerates throughout a second to give a global result of a certain period of time.
What do you think about a metric that measured how completely a frame is rendered? Some threshold below which a frame would not count in the fps number?
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  #25 (permalink)  
Old March 14, 2013, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by SugarJ View Post

SKYMTL, is it possible to stretch the charts shown on this page:NVIDIA GTX TITAN vs. SLI & Crossfire
What I'm asking is that instead of charting by frame number, you chart by time so that the comparison at any specific time is more immediately visible? It might make the charts easier to read, rather than have 3 different x-axis lengths on the same chart.
I think I know what you mean but I'm not 100% sure. The FRAPS output is in milliseconds and frame number. It doesn't attribute a time stamp to each data point. However, we also can't forget that most of those charts show upwards of three THOUSAND data points.

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Originally Posted by beck2448 View Post
What do you think about a metric that measured how completely a frame is rendered? Some threshold below which a frame would not count in the fps number?
I think it would be helpful but you have to look at how benchmarks are currently being done. Personally, I find there should always be a clearly distinguished line between benchmarking an EXPERIENCE rather than measuring absolutes across a purely scientific spectrum. It begins a slippery slope which starts and ends with a simple question: what's being benchmarked?

I'll give you an example. If a solution is skipping frames in order to achieve a certain result and the end user has no way of seeing it, should it be counted as an ISSUE or a FEATURE? In a way it could be considered cheating but if it benefits gameplay while being completely invisible.

Basically, measuring how "completely" a frame is rendered is quite hard since in some extreme cases, simple screen tearing can be misconstrued as incomplete frame renders. In addition, a gamer typically doesn't see frame rendering issues unless they are accompanied with extremely high latencies.

Sure, you can inject a ton of technical testing into the equation in order to validate this testing method but in my roundabout opinion, if it isn't visible to the end user, it shouldn't be held against a given GPU's end results.
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  #26 (permalink)  
Old March 14, 2013, 10:28 AM
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I get the same result in Far Cry 3 with my crossfired 7970's. High enough FPS that you'd think would equal great smooth gameplay, but nope.... it stutters more then Porky Pig!!!!! The games stutters with a single card too but not nearly as much and is very playable. I hope it's just a driver issue that AMD has to iron out.
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  #27 (permalink)  
Old March 14, 2013, 10:58 AM
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[QUOTE=SKYMTL;696355]I think I know what you mean but I'm not 100% sure. The FRAPS output is in milliseconds and frame number. It doesn't attribute a time stamp to each data point. However, we also can't forget that most of those charts show upwards of three THOUSAND data points.



I think it would be helpful but you have to look at how benchmarks are currently being done. Personally, I find there should always be a clearly distinguished line between benchmarking an EXPERIENCE rather than measuring absolutes across a purely scientific spectrum. It begins a slippery slope which starts and ends with a simple question: what's being benchmarked?

I'll give you an example. If a solution is skipping frames in order to achieve a certain result and the end user has no way of seeing it, should it be counted as an ISSUE or a FEATURE? In a way it could be considered cheating but if it benefits gameplay while being completely invisible.


If a solution is skipping frames, but is including those skipped frames in the fps counter as rendered, I have a problem with that. Of course actual experience is always a key factor.
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  #28 (permalink)  
Old March 14, 2013, 11:06 AM
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kill,turn down the backgroundfx effects option and it's done :D 100% smooth.
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  #29 (permalink)  
Old March 14, 2013, 11:21 AM
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[QUOTE=beck2448;696364]
Quote:
Originally Posted by SKYMTL View Post
If a solution is skipping frames, but is including those skipped frames in the fps counter as rendered, I have a problem with that. Of course actual experience is always a key factor.
I do too but again, it doesn't necessarily translate into a poor experience.
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  #30 (permalink)  
Old March 14, 2013, 11:25 AM
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Great read, like always. I'm using 2 Titans in SLI right now (with modded BIOS to solve the throttling problem) and it's working great. Both cards rock-stable at 1202 mhz.

Almost 100% scaling in everything I try. Waiting for my 3rd one to come in.

FPS is not everything. It's nice to see reviewers going beyond that. Great job.
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