Compare PC Gaming Hardware with Benchmarks

Compare PC Gaming Hardware with Benchmarks

Benchmarks – When it comes to comparing graphics cards, the gaming world seems to revolve right around it. If you are not familiar with a performance benchmark, it is a program (or suite of software) that you run on your computer to display the performance of a component, usually compared to some form of proprietary measure in proprietary units of measure.
(The problem is further confusing due to the large number of modular programs).
Many of the benchmarks are offered as free and trial software. Since this type of computer programming is a practical requirement for learning how to work with computers on large projects, most students of computer programming have written at least one performance measurement program in the past. Some benchmarks test the performance of your CPU, hard drives, and memory, as well as your graphics card.
The whole idea sounds very scientific, and the vast majority of gamers rely almost entirely on benchmark performance numbers when buying new hardware. But are modular software completely accurate?
Keep in mind that these programs can choose from an almost unlimited set of methods for hardware testing (maybe you place too much importance on one aspect of the graphics card, such as memory handling, and not enough on the texture mapping). Like statistics, take results from a standard scale with caution.

“Since your computer should “focus” on providing the best graphics possible during testing, it is important that no other programs are running in the background while the benchmark is running.”

How do standards work?
All benchmarks tend to use the same metrics to arrive at their results – for example, graphics benchmarking software will likely measure the same obscure technical features as other benchmarks, including polygons created per second, frames per second, memory transfer rate, thread count , GPU speed rating. (Don’t worry, you won’t be tested behind the scenes.)
The Graphics Benchmarks program runs a series of 3D scenes – which, by the way, is a great view in itself. Each scene puts a specific type of effect through its paces, and the benchmark scores specifications for how well the card will perform.
At the end of the testing cycle, the final performance figure is calculated and displayed, ready to compare with other systems
The real score you’re looking for is the final performance number – the card with the higher benchmark should perform better in your 3D games. Most benchmarks reference their results in a wholly proprietary result, so you need the benchmark numbers for the software itself (running once with each device) to compare two or more different pieces of hardware.
Popular performance measurement software
Downloading and installing any of the well known and respected standalone benchmark software (rather than a proprietary standard from the hardware manufacturer) is time consuming, especially if you want to squeeze every last frame of your hardware:

3DMark 11 from Futuremark Corporation: This is a high-density graphics benchmark software for computers using DirectX 11 (which is installed by default in Windows 8, but is not supported by all graphics cards).
3DMark 11 specifically focuses on the performance of your CPU and graphics card in a gaming environment, so it tends to be the common denominator online when discussing 3D gaming performance. 3DMark 11 will cost you $20. Visit the company’s website for more information. (The company also offers PCMark 7, a more comprehensive benchmark that tests your entire system.)

PerformanceTest 8 from PassMark Software: This highly-respected cross-program ($26) gives dates back to Windows 98. PerformanceTest 8 measures your entire system—not just your graphics card—and the detailed results are probably the best in the business.

Sandra Lite 2013 from SiSoftware: Sandra Lite is a free version of this classic beta software standard – the full personal version costs $50. Sandra Lite evaluates a number of PC features that others don’t, including virtual memory performance and advanced networking functionality.