Game Ready GeForce 456.71 Driver Performance Analysis featuring a Gigabyte AORUS RTX 3080 MASTER using 10 Games

This driver performance analysis showcases the performance of a Gigabyte AORUS RTX 3080 MASTER with 10 PC games using the latest GeForce 456.71 Game Ready driver. We compare these drivers versus driver 456.55, and we perform all tests on the same game version and on the same OS build.

This time, our testing platform is a recent install of Windows 10 64-bit Pro Edition, an i9-9900K with stock clocks, a Gigabyte Z390 AORUS PRO motherboard, and 32GB of Kingston DDR4 3333MHz. The games tested, settings, and hardware are identical except for the drivers we compare.

 

Before offering the performance data and charts of each different analysis scenario, it’s important to describe both the hardware and software configuration used in our testing as well as the analysis methodology.

Benching Methodology

Test Configuration – Hardware

  • Intel Core i9-9900K (Hyper Threading/Turbo boost on; stock settings)
  • Gigabyte Z390 AORUS PRO motherboard (Intel Z390 chipset, v.F9 BIOS)
  • Kingston HyperX Predator 32GB DDR4 (2×16GB, dual channel at 3333 MHz CL16)
  • Gigabyte AORUS GeForce RTX 3080 MASTER 10GB; v.F2 VBIOS, stock clocks
  • Samsung 500GB SSD 960 EVO NVMe M.2
  • Seagate 2TB Desktop SSHD SATA 3.1
  • Seagate 2TB FireCuda SATA 3.1
  • Corsair RM750x, 750W 80PLUS Gold power supply unit
  • ASUS ROG Swift PG279Q 27″ IPS 2560 x 1440 165Hz 4ms G-Sync Monitor (G-Sync Off, Fixed Refresh Rate On)

Test Configuration – Software

  • NVIDIA GeForce 456.71 and 456.55 drivers; High Quality & prefer maximum performance (on a per game profile-basis); fixed refresh rate (globally).
  • V-Sync application controlled in the control panel, V-Sync Off in game.
  • AA and AF as noted in games; all in-game settings are specified.
  • Windows 10 64-bit Pro edition, latest updates v2004, Game Mode, Game DVR & Game Bar features Off.
  • Gigabyte software tools not installed.
  • Latest DirectX
  • All 10 games are patched to their latest versions at time of publication.
  • 3DMark’s suite and UNIGINE Superposition benchmark, latest version
  • Basemark GPU benchmark, v1.1
  • CapFrameX (CX), latest version
  • RivaTuner Statistics Server (RTSS), latest version
  • Display Driver Uninstaller (DDU), latest version; always uninstall old driver using DDU in safe mode, clean & restart.
  • ISLC (Purge Standby List) before each benchmark.

GeForce Driver Suite-related

  • Standard drivers are used.
  • Display driver is installed.
  • PhysX is installed, latest version.

Hybrid & Non-Synthetic Tests-related

  • Single run per test.

Game Benchmarks-related

  • The corresponding built-in benchmark sequence is used.

Frametimes Capture & Analysis tool-related

  • CapFrameX used for capturing and analyzing the relevant performance numbers obtained from each recorded built-in benchmark sequence.
  • Consecutive runs until detecting 3 valid runs (no outliers) that can be aggregated by CapFrameX using the following method:
    • “Aggregate excluding outliers”
      • Outlier metric: Third, P0.2 (0.2% FPS percentile).
      • Outlier percentage: 3% (the % the FPS of an entry can differ from the median of all entries before counting as an outlier).
  • To compare and value the results and aggregated records in terms of percentages of Gain / Loss, the following thresholds are set to consider a certain % value as significant (not within the margin of error) for our benchmarking purposes:
    • Score/FPS Avg > 3% when valuing hybrid & non-synthetic benchmarks;
    • FPS Avg > 3% when valuing raw performance;
    • P1/P0.2 > 3% when valuing frame time consistencycustom formula

{[(LowPercentileFPS_2 / AvgFPS_2) / (LowPercentileFPS_1 / AvgFPS_1)] – 1} x 100

Benchmark Suite: 10 PC Games, 3 Hybrid & 3 Non-Synthetic Tests

Hybrid Tests (3DMark)

  • Fire Strike Ultra
  • Time Spy Extreme
  • Port Royal

Non-Synthetic Tests

  • Basemark GPU
  • UNIGINE Superposition
  • Neon Noir (Benchmark)

DX11 Games

  • Borderlands 3 (DX11)
  • Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
  • Far Cry 5
  • Ghost Recon Breakpoint (DX11)
  • Neon Noir (Loop Mode)

DX12 Games

  • Borderlands 3 (DX12)
  • Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Metro: Exodus (DX12)
  • Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 (DX12)

Vulkan Games

  • Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint (VK)
  • Strange Brigade (VK)
  • Wolfenstein Youngblood

NVIDIA Control Panel settings

Here are the global NVIDIA Control Panel settings:

Both ‘High Quality’ value for texture filtering-quality setting and ‘Prefer maximum performance’ for power management mode are set on a per game or program profile-basis via Manage 3D Settings > Program settings tab.

GeForce 456.71 Game Ready WHQL Drivers

This latest GeForce Game Ready 456.71 driver was released on Wednesday (10/7/20) primarily for optimizing your experience in the Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War PC Beta, which begins October 15th. It doesn’t add support for additional monitors to the G-SYNC compatible list. This new driver also provides support for NVIDIA Reflex in the upcoming Open Beta.

Source: Activision Publishing, Inc.

The download links for the latest GeForce 456.71 drivers can be found starting here.  The release notes can be found here as a downloadable pdf file Here are the release highlights from NVIDIA’s website:

Game Ready Drivers provide the best possible gaming experience for all major new releases. Prior to a new title launching, our driver team is working up until the last minute to ensure every performance tweak and bug fix is included for the best gameplay on day-1.

Game Ready for Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War PC Beta
This new Game Ready Driver provides support for the upcoming Open Beta for Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. In addition, this driver enables support for NVIDIA Reflex in the Beta, allowing GeForce gamers to reduce system latency and improve responsiveness of gameplay.

This driver also contains fixes to the following security vulnerabilities: CVE‑2020‑5980, CVE‑2020‑5979, CVE‑2020‑5981, and CVE‑2020‑5982.

Let’s head to the tables and charts to compare the driver performance changes of the latest GeForce 456.71 driver versus 456.55.

The Performance Summary Charts with 10 Games

Below are the summary charts of our representative selection of 10 games and 3 hybrid and 3 non-synthetic benchmarks. We chart the games’ performance to compare the AORUS RTX 3080 MASTER driver’s performance progression from version 456.55 to the latest, 456.71. We list the graphics settings on the charts, and we run the built-in game benchmarks sequence at 2560×1440. You can open each chart in a separate window or tab for best viewing.

Results give average framerates and higher is better. The low FPS percentiles (P1 and P0.2) are displayed below the corresponding averages. We use CapFrameX to record frametimes over time and to visualize and convert them into their corresponding average FPS and P1 and P0.2 FPS percentiles values. There are also columns showing percentages of gain / loss in both raw performance (average FPS) and, when applicable, in frametimes consistency or stability between the different driver versions. To calculate the gains or losses in stability we applied our custom formula:

{[(LowPercentileFPS_2 / AvgFPS_2) / (LowPercentileFPS_1 / AvgFPS_1)] – 1} x 100

We mark significant performance changes (higher than 3%in bold and use green or red font for the significant gains or losses respectively.

Notes on GeForce 456.71 driver performance

From the charts, we see no significant performance changes between drivers for both the hybrid and non-synthetic tests.

For the built-in game benchmarks, there aren’t also significant differences in performance when we move to 456.71 drivers from 456.55 driver version.

Disclaimer

Please be aware that the following results, notes and the corresponding driver recommendation are valid for similar Ampere gaming rigs on Windows 10 v2004. Its representativeness, applicability and usefulness on different NVIDIA GPU architectures, testing benches and MS Windows versions may vary.

Conclusion

Based on our previous results and findings, we recommend updating to the latest GeForce 456.71 driver, since its raw performance and smoothness or frametimes consistency level is on par with prior driver 456.55.

From a qualitative point of view, there are important reasons that also make it advisable to upgrade to version 456.71. These reasons include its higher level of security fixes and games’ bug fixes, the optimizations for the latest AAA games, and support for the latest NVIDIA technologies.

Let’s Play!

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Rodrigo González (aka “RodroG”) is an enthusiast gamer and tech reviewer interested especially in shooter games, open world role playing games, and software and hardware benchmarking. He is the author of the NVIDIA WHQL Driver Performance Benchmarks Series and founder and moderator of the r/allbenchmarks community on Reddit.

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