Test Configuration – Hardware
- Intel Core i7 3770K (overclocked to 4.5GHz); Turbo is on.
- EVGA Z77 FTW motherboard (Intel Z77 chipset, latest beta BIOS, PCIe 3.0 specification; CrossFire/SLI 16x+16x using Plex chip.)
- 8GB Kingston DDR3 PC1866 Kingston RAM (4×2 GB, dual-channel at 1866MHz; supplied by Kingston)
- Power Color Radeon HD 7970 (3GB, overclocked to GHz Edition speeds 1050/6000MHz)
- Nvidia GTX 680 (2GB, 1006/6008MHz, reference clocks), supplied by Nvidia
- Onboard Realtek Audio
- Two identical 500 GB Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 hard drives configured and set up identically from drive image; one partition for Nvidia GeForce drivers and one for ATI Catalyst drivers
- Kingston 240GB HyperX SSD used for AMD partition, supplied by Kingston.
- Kingston 240GB HyperX 3K SSD used for Nvidia partition, supplied by Kingston
- OWC 240GB Mercury EXTREME Pro 4G used for both AMD and Nvidia, on loan from OWC.
- Thermaltake ToughPower 775 W power supply unit supplied by Thermaltake
- Thermaltake Overseer RX-I full tower case, supplied by Thermaltake
- Sapphire Vapor-X CPU cooler on loan from Sapphire
- Philips DVD SATA writer
- ASUS VG278 27″ Light Boost enabled 3D Vision 2 ready 120Hz display
Test Configuration – Software
- Fraps 3.5.9 full version
- Frafs Benchmark Viewer, latest beta
- ATi Catalyst 12-11 Beta11 drivers; highest quality mip-mapping set in the driver; use application settings; surface performance optimizations are off. Latest CAPs used.
- Catalyst Control Center used to set power draw to maximum for the HD 7970; clocks, voltage and fan profiles are stock
- EVGA PrecisionX used to set power draw to maximum for Nvidia cards; clocks voltage and fan profile are stock
- NVIDIA GeForce WHQL 310.70 High Quality; maximum performance
- Windows 7 64-bit; very latest updates
- Latest DirectX
- All games are patched to their latest versions.
- vsync is forced off in the control panels.
- Varying AA enabled as noted in games; all in-game settings are specified with 16xAF always applied; 16xAF forced in control panel for Crysis.
- All results show average frame rates and frame times
- Highest quality sound (stereo) used in all games.
- Windows 7 64, all DX9 titles were run under DX9 render paths, DX10 titles were run under DX10 render paths and DX11 titles under DX11 render paths.
- Vantage (Jane Nash)
- World in Conflict, Soviet Assault
- Resident Evil 5
- Far Cry 2
- Heaven 3.
- STALKER, Call of Pripyat
- Aliens vs. Predator
- Crysis 2
- Hitman Absolution
- Sleeping Dogs
Before we head to the charts to see the frame time comparison between frame time results of the games played on SSD versus on HDD, let’s look at Frafs Benchmark Viewer and our methods for posting the charts that you will see in our frame time measurement evaluations.