GeForce 528.02 Driver Performance Analysis

GeForce 528.02 Driver Performance Analysis – 17 games benchmarked using an RTX 4070 Ti and 3080

This driver performance analysis showcases the performance of an ASUS TUF GAMING RTX 4070 Ti OC EDITION (Ada Lovelace architecture) and a Gigabyte AORUS RTX 3080 MASTER (Ampere architecture) with 17 PC games using the latest GeForce 528.02 Game Ready driver. This time, we can only compare this GeForce driver versus the previous Game Ready driver 527.56 with the RTX 3080 and set our RTX 4070 Ti performance baseline using the latest driver for future analyses. We perform all tests on the same game version & OS build.

Our ASUS TUF GAMING RTX 4070 Ti OC EDITION (Ada Lovelace GPU micro-architecture).

Our testing platform is a recent install of Windows 11 64-bit Pro Edition, an i9-12900K with stock clocks, an ASUS PRIME Z690-P D4 motherboard, and 32GB of T-FORCE XTREEM ARGB WHITE DDR4 3600MHz. The games tested, settings and hardware are identical except for the GPUs and the drivers we compare.

Our AORUS RTX 3080 MASTER, rev. 1.0 (Ampere GPU micro-architecture).

Benching Methodology

Test Configuration – Hardware

  • 12th Gen Intel Core i9-12900K (Hyper-Threading/Turbo boost on; stock settings)
  • ASUS PRIME Z690-P D4 motherboard (Intel Z690 chipset, v.1008 BIOS)
  • T-FORCE XTREEM ARGB WHITE 32GB DDR4 (2×16GB, dual-channel at 3600 MHz CL14 XMP), supplied by TeamGroup
  • ASUS TUF GAMING GeForce RTX 4070 Ti OC EDITION 12GB, stock clocks
  • Gigabyte AORUS GeForce RTX 3080 MASTER 10GB (rev. 1.0); v.F4 VBIOS, stock clocks
  • 1 x Samsung 500GB SSD 960 EVO NVMe M.2
  • 2 x WD Blue 1TB SATA SSD
  • 1 x TeamGroup MP33 M.2 PCIe 1TB SSD
  • Corsair RM850x, 850W 80PLUS Gold power supply unit
  • ASUS TUF Gaming VG289Q 28″ IPS UltraHD (3840×2160) 60Hz 5ms FreeSync Monitor for testing games at 2160p resolution.
  • ASUS ROG Swift PG279Q 27″ IPS QuadHD (2560 x 1440) 165Hz 4ms G-Sync Monitor for testing games at 1440p resolution.

Test Configuration – Software

  • Nvidia GeForce 527.56 and 528.02 drivers; ‘Prefer maximum performance’ (on a per-game profile basis); Shader Cache Size ‘Unlimited’ (globally); fixed refresh rate (globally).
  • We enable Resizable BAR.
  • ‘V-Sync application controlled’ in the control panel; V-Sync off in-game.
  • We note and specify the display resolution and the main in-game display, graphics, AA, and scaling settings in the performance summary charts.
  • Windows 11 64-bit Pro edition, latest updates v22H2, High-performance power plan, HAGS & Game Mode are enabled, Game DVR & Game Bar features off, Control Flow Guard (CFG) off on a per-game basis, Hypervisor and Virtualization-based security are disabled.
  • We do not install GIGABYTE or ASUS tools.
  • Latest DirectX
  • All 17 games are patched to their latest versions at the time of publication.
  • 3DMark suite and UNIGINE Superposition benchmark, the latest version
  • Basemark GPU benchmark, v.1.2.3
  • UNIGINE Superposition, v.1.1
  • CapFrameX (CX); the latest version
  • RivaTuner Statistics Server (RTSS); the latest version
  • FrameView; the latest version
  • Display Driver Uninstaller (DDU), the latest version; always uninstall drivers using DDU in safe mode, clean, and restart.
  • ISLC (Purge Standby List) before each benchmark.

GeForce Driver Suite-related

  • We use DCH Game Ready drivers.
  • The display driver is installed.
  • We install the latest version of PhysX.

Hybrid & Non-Synthetic Tests-related

  • Single run per test.

Game Benchmarks-related

  • We use the corresponding built-in or custom benchmark sequence.

Frametimes Capture & Analysis tool-related

  • We use CapFrameX for capturing frametimes and analyzing the relevant performance numbers obtained from each recorded built-in or custom benchmark sequence.
  • We use FrameView for capturing purposes only when DLSS 3 is enabled for maximum reliability.
  • We always perform consecutive runs until detecting three usable 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).
  • We compare and evaluate the results and aggregated records in terms of percentages of gain/loss and set the following thresholds to consider a % value as significant (not within the margin of error) for our benchmarking purposes:
      • Score/FPS Avg > 3% when valuing hybrid and non-synthetic benchmarks;
      • FPS Avg > 3% when evaluating raw performance;
      • P1 > 3% when evaluating frame time consistency; after applying our custom formula

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

Benchmark Suite: 17 PC Games, 4 Hybrid & 3 Non-Synthetic Tests

PC Games

DX11 Games

  • Days Gone (DX11)
  • God of War (DX11)
  • Total War: Warhammer III (DX11)

DX12 Games

  • A Plague Tale: Requiem (DX12)
  • Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla (DX12)
  • Call of Duty: Vanguard (DX12)
  • Cyberpunk 2077 v.1.61 (DX12)
  • F1 2021 (DX12)
  • Far Cry 6 (DX12)
  • Forza Horizon 5 (DX12)
  • Hitman 3 (DX12)
  • Horizon Zero Dawn (DX12)
  • Metro Exodus PC Enhanced Edition (DX12)
  • The Callisto Protocol (DX12)

Vulkan Games

  • DOOM Eternal (VK)
  • Quake 2 RTX (VK; v.1.6.0)
  • Wolfenstein: Youngblood (VK)

Hybrid Tests (3DMark)

  • DirectX Raytracing feature test
  • Fire Strike Ultra
  • Port Royal
  • Time Spy Extreme

Non-Synthetic Tests

  • Basemark GPU
  • GPUScore: Relic of Life
  • UNIGINE Superposition

Nvidia Control Panel settings

Here are the global Nvidia Control Panel settings:

Nvidia Control Panel Global 3D Settings (AORUS RTX 3080 MASTER & TUF GAMING RTX 4070 Ti OC).

The value ‘Prefer maximum performance’ for the power management mode setting is set on a per-game or program profile basis via Manage 3D Settings > Program settings tab.

GeForce 528.02 Game Ready WHQL Drivers

This latest GeForce Game Ready 528.02 driver was released on January 5 primarily for the launch of RTX 4070 Ti GPUs. It also brings optimized support for Nvidia DLSS 3 technology in Conqueror’s Blade and Dakar Desert Rally.

The download links for the latest GeForce 528.02 drivers can be found here. The release notes are here as a downloadable pdf fileHere are the release highlights from Nvidia’s website:

This new Game Ready Driver provides the best day-0 gaming experience for the latest new games supporting NVIDIA DLSS 3 technology, including Conqueror’s Blade and Dakar Desert Rally.

Gaming Technology
      • Introduces support for the GeForce RTX 4070 Ti
Source: Nvidia

The GeForce 528.02 Driver Performance – Summary Charts with 17 Games

Below are the summary charts of our selection of 17 games plus four hybrid and three non-synthetic benchmarks. We chart our games’ driver performance progression from version 527.56 to 528.02 using the AORUS RTX 3080 MASTER and our gaming driver performance baseline for the RTX 4070 Ti GPU.

You can see the list of graphics settings on the performance data tables, and we run each built-in or custom game benchmark’s sequence at 3840×2160 or 2560×1440, as specified on the charts.

Results give average framerates, and higher is better. We display the low FPS percentile (P1) below the corresponding averages in italics and a slightly smaller font. We use CapFrameX to record frametimes over time and to visualize and convert them into their corresponding average FPS and P1 FPS percentiles values.

There are also columns showing percentages of gain/loss in raw performance (average FPS) and, when applicable, in frame time consistency or stability between the different driver versions. We applied the following custom formula to calculate the stability gains or losses:

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

We mark significant performance changes (higher than 3%in bold and use purple for the significant improvements or orange font for regressions.

GeForce 528.02 Driver Performance Charts

geforce 528.02 driver performance
Hybrid Benchmark Results
geforce 528.02 driver performance
Non-Synthetic Benchmark Results
geforce 528.2 driver performance
DirectX 11 Game Performance Results
geforce 528.02 driver performance
DirectX 12 Game Performance Results
geforce 528.02 driver performance
Vulkan Game Performance Results
DirectX Raytracing Game Benchmark Results
geforce 528.02 driver performance
Vulkan Raytracing Game Performance Results

Notes on GeForce 528.02 Driver Performance

From the charts, we see no significant differences in graphics performance between drivers for the hybrid and non-synthetic tests using our RTX 3080.

For the game benchmarks, although most games show no significant differences when we move to 528.02 drivers from the 527.56 driver version using our RTX 3080 GPU, we see a notable improvement (approximately a +8%) in The Callisto Protocol (DX12, no ray tracing) in terms of frame time consistency.

Our testing also shows that the 528.02 driver delivers approximately the same performance as the pre-RTX 4070 Ti launch 527.62 press drivers, including the significant frametime stability gain in The Callisto Protocol (DX12, no ray tracing). So, we also consider it would probably be a recommended GeForce Game-Ready driver version for Ada Lovelace users.

Disclaimer
Please be aware that the following results, notes, and the corresponding driver recommendation are valid for similar Ada Lovelace and Ampere gaming rigs on Windows 11 v22H2. Although our GeForce driver recommendation can still be handy or suitable for Turing gamers, their 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 Ada Lovelace and Ampere users update to 528.02 drivers. Overall, although its raw performance and smoothness or frametimes consistency are on par with both the previous driver 527.56 using our RTX 3080 and press driver 527.62 with the RTX 4070 Ti, we see a substantial performance gain in frame time stability in The Callisto Protocol (DX12, no ray tracing) using both NVIDIA GPU architectures.

From a qualitative point of view, there are also important reasons that make it advisable to upgrade to version 528.02. These reasons include its higher level of driver bug fixes, optimized support for the latest Nvidia technologies, and support for the RTX 4070 Ti GPU.

Let’s Play!

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Rodrigo González (aka RodroG) is the current BTR lead reviewer and an enthusiast gamer. He is especially interested 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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