The GeForce Experience
Along with introducing the GTX 780, Nvidia is also introducing the official release of their GeForce Experience software. We saw it in Beta before but now they feel that it is fine-tuned enough to push it out to everyone. So what is the GeForce Experience all about? Its actually a very interesting piece of software. Its first task is to make sure you keep your Nvidia drivers up to date, something that can be very important if you play a lot of new games or if you just want to get the best performance in the game you have. It’s amazing the performance improvements that driver updates can give you. While retesting the HD 7970 and the GTX 680 for this article I saw amazing jumps in performance over the past year that could almost as much as the jump from generation to generation of cards. The GeForce Experience does this behind the scenes without bugging you and you even have an option to select beta drivers if you are looking for the cutting edge.
An even bigger role the GeForce Experience software plays is the optimization of all of your games. I know some of you are thinking that most games will suggest settings but let me be the first to tell you that those settings are extremely vague at best. As someone with four GPU’s in their PC I still get most games suggesting mid-range settings. Nvidia goes through each game to find the best playable settings and then tests them back on all of their cards, making adjustments for each card to get the best experience. In a lot of cases this includes making sure they turn on or tune Nvidia only features like PhysX and TSXX.
As long as you have played the game, it will show you your current settings next to what they recommend. Then all you have to do is click optimize and it will change your in game settings for you. This is great for people who just want to game and aren’t interested in figuring out what the best settings might be. Some people might turn everything all the way up and actually not have the power to push everything. Because of that this is a perfect way for people to get the best possible experience in every game.
If you poke around its obvious that Nvidia is planning a lot more for the GeForce Experience. For example over on the My Rig tab you can find a Game Streaming option that is specific to your Nvidia Shield. On our call Nvidia talked about a new feature specifically that is coming this summer called Shadowplay. This is a feature that I can only describe as game changing. Shadowplay will utilize the H.264 video encoder built into every Kepler GPU and can record the last 20 minutes of your gameplay much like a DVR. That means if something amazing happens that your friends won’t believe you can go back and actually have a copy of that without having to worry about recording everything you do and sorting through all of the videos that would create. They plan on letting you adjust the amount of time back it is recording and there will be other options that will let you record full matches if you would like as well. This is both interesting because we will finally have a recording function that doesn’t slow down your gameplay like FRAPS as well as the DVR like recording. All the more reason to look forward to this summer!
For those are wondering, Geforce Experience is going to replace Nvidia update starting with the R320 GTX 780 launch driver update. This means everyone will get to experience the experience unless they opt out when installing.