RTX and DLSS

Being an RTX card I also like checking out the performance of some of Nvidia’s features. Namely the ray tracing performance and the performance improvements you can see by using DLSS combined with the tensor cores. My first test goes back to our synthetic benchmarks with 3DMark where I check out their Port Royal benchmark. This is the one test that does also have AMD Ray Tracing support which is great to get a look at how different cards including older non-RTX cards perform. The RTX 4060 Ti Founders Edition is almost in a dead tie with the RTX 3070 here with the 3060 Ti and then the 6750 XT below that.

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    3DMark also has added in a few feature tests, one being a look at DLSS performance. For this one, I have the resolution set to 4K and I test with all three versions of DLSS as well as with it off completely. All DLSS are set to their performance setting as well to keep the results comparable. This gives us a great look at the performance improvements that DLSS has given with DLSS 3 also including frame generation. The RTX 4060 Ti Founders Edition is sitting below the RTX 3070 with its DLSS 2 performance just under 2 FPS lower and it is 6 FPS higher than the 3060 Ti in the same test. But what is most interesting is seeing the DLSS 3 performance up over the top of the other results, putting the 4060 Ti with DLSS 3 up in the same range as the RTX 3080 with DLSS 2.

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I then jumped into game tests, this time with Watch Dogs: Legion. For this one, I wanted to get an idea of the performance you will see when taking advantage of Nvidia’s RTX and DLSS features. I tested at 4k with the ultra detail setting and with ultra being the setting for DLSS and RTX when they are on as well. I then test with no RTX or DLSS on and then with RTX DLSS on and off and on together. Here the RTX 4060 Ti Founders Edition is tied with the RTX 3070 for its DLSS Only results and out in front of the 3070 in the combined test but it's interesting to see that without RTX or DLSS it is 3 FPS lower than the 3070 and two FPS lower with just RTX, the fourth generation Tensor cores are really putting in work there. The no RTX or DLSS performance was also tied with the 3060 Ti which is interesting.

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Next, I wanted to check out the performance in Metro Exodus which we have used for testing for a long time now. This test is similar as well with it set to 4K and Ultra detail, I use the included benchmark to test DLSS and RTX individually and then with them both on and both off to give us a look at overall frame rates depending on which direction you go. I should point out that this is using the Enhanced Edition where our normal benchmark uses the standard version for testing with AMD but that version DLSS no longer works. That said the RTX 4060 Ti Founders Edition is sitting right in between the RTX 3070 and the RTX 3060 Ti in all four of the results here. We also get a look at the performance difference with RTX on and off which was less than I would have expected at 4 FPS. But turning DLSS on more than doubles the performance and having RTX on is only a difference of 2 FPS in that situation.

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    I also wanted to take a look at DLSS 3 performance as well a little more than my initial look at it with 3DMark’s benchmark. For this, I put Nvidias Frameview to the test to run a few benchmarks using the games that currently support DLSS 3. For games with a built-in benchmark, I ran the benchmark but used frameview so we could get the FPS and 1% lows and because with some of the games frame generation is messing up their in game FPS readouts. V-Sync was turned off on all of the tests because it currently causes problems with frame generation and all of the tests were done at 1080p, 1440p, and 4k with the highest detail settings including the highest RTX settings. DLSS 3 when there is an option was set to performance.

The first game tested was Cyberpunk 2077 and the biggest thing here is you can see that without DLSS 3 on at 4K performance fell off of a cliff with 1 FPS for the average frame rate with the RTX 4060 Ti Founders Edition completely overloaded but running DLSS 3 helped make it playable, not that I would recommend that you use this card at 4k. The other two resolutions give us a much better look at things. At 1080p for example we go from a frame rate of just 44 up to 156 which is an improvement of 254%. At 1440p it is an even bigger jump than that going from 24 FPS up to 103 for a 329% improvement. The bigger picture here is that both of those take mediocre or unplayable performance and improve it up into a range where it is smooth and even high refresh capable. I did also run one more situation in Cyberpunk where I dropped the detail down to the low preset and ran the tests again. This will sometimes put us in a CPU limit situation where performance improvements on the GPU side would normally not make any difference in actual frame rates but frame generation is interesting in that it still helps lighten the load and improves performance. So the jump here is a lot smaller but we did go from 178 FPS up to 238 or 33% improvement.

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In F1 2022 I ran three tests. I tested with full DLSS, I did it again but turned off frame generation, and then tested with DLSS off and TAA on. This gives us a good look at what frame generation alone does and at 1080p it was worth 66 FPS or 34% improvement. The combined DLSS 3 performance was a lot more at 122% taking F1 2022 from smooth up into the high refresh rate range including improving the 1% lows which are huge on a fast game like this. At 1440p the improvement was less but DLSS 3 did take it from 69 FPS up to 168. Then at 4K we once again have that weird performance issue where frame generation lowered performance which I saw on the RTX 4070 as well but DLSS settings other than frame generation did take barely playable performance up into the 60+ range which would be a nice improvement if you were in that situation.

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In the side scroller Forged in Shadow Torch DLSS 3 the RTX 4060 Ti Founders Edition saw an improvement of 41% at 1080p by turning DLSS 3 on, 75% with 1440p, and 135% at 4k. For 1080p performance was already good. But at 1440p this took smooth up into the high-refresh range and at 4K it took playable up well over the smooth range.

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Next up was Destroy All Humans! 2 – Reprobed. The RTX 4060 Ti Founders Edition improved by 26% at 1080p, 90% at 1440p, and at 4K it wouldn’t even play at all without crashing without turning on DLSS 3. At 1080p the extra performance didn’t make much of an impact because the RTX 4060 Ti Founders Edition was already at 174 FPS but at 1440p it took good performance up into the high-refresh range.

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Last I took a look at Microsoft Flight Simulator and this is an interesting case because this is a well-known CPU-limited game. To keep things consistent the test used the landing test run over Sydney With DLSS off the RTX 4060 Ti Founders Edition saw a 90% improvement at 1080p, 150% at 1440p, and at 4K it was much lower at 32% improvement.

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