Graphics verses Performance
The screenshots taken for this report were
taken on my current PC featuring:
- AMD Athlon XP 2400+ OCed
- 512MB PC3200 DDR
- Leadtek WinFast A380 GF FX 5950 Ultra
They were taken with game settings all at high unless otherwise
noted and with vsynch disabled.
Antialiasing (AA) is a technique for diminishing
jaggies - stairstep-like lines that should be smooth. Jaggies
occur because the output
device ,in this case the monitor, doesn't have a high
enough resolution to represent a smooth line.
the prominence of jaggies by surrounding the stairsteps
with intermediate shades of gray (for gray-scaling devices)
color (for color devices). Although this reduces the jagged
appearance of the lines, it also makes them fuzzier. Another
method for reducing jaggies is called smoothing, in which
a printer changes the size and horizontal alignment of
dots to make curves smoother. Antialiasing is sometimes called
Anisotropic Filtering (AF) is used
to address a specific kind of texture artifact that is
visible when a 3D surface is
sloped relative to the view camera. It improves the image
by sharpening the detail seen at a distance from where
you are in the
As you can see by this screenshot complete
with framerates (all screenshots will include the FPS at
the time it was
taken), while looking pretty good, with AA and AF off, the
railing is pretty jagged and the floor goes out of focus
1/3rd of the way up the picture. However, I do have decent
framerates and a fairly decent look to the game.
ANTI ALIAS OBSERVATIONS
image, the railings start to look
smoother and less jagged when AA is enabled and at 2x, the
2xquincunx (a nVidia setting) provides
for similar sampling to 4x (as seen here) but makes everything
bit more fuzzy looking. I can't recommend using 2xquincunx
for anything. Notice that the framerates are the same.
here to see the image and framerate with Anti Aliasing
At both 6x and 8x,
jaggies are well diminished compared to not having AA enabled,
but the Performance hits is huge
compared to no AA. One thing I did notice is that splash
screen text and in-game text started looking blurry and had
artifacts around them as evidenced in these 2 pics.
Anisotropic Filtering Observations
As you can see with
AF enabled, the area of sharpness that
is visible (check out under the bridge) increases compared
to no AF. While there is a Performance hit, it isn't as large
as having AA enabled (at least on my rig, others may have
more or less depending on your rigs configuration).
Increasing the AF setting to 4x and 8x increased
the distance of sharpness, the entire walkway in the shopping
center is now in focus
compared to screenshot with no AA/AF (top of report). Notice
the small Performance hit that AF imparts even at 8xAF, it
large as the
ones when AA is enabled.
Combining AA and AF
The following screens
are with AA and AF enabled at different settings combined.
Follow the Performance hits when they are increased.
As you can see, framerates take a really
big hit once you get up to 6x and 8x. I found I still get
pretty good Performance
and detail at 4xAA and 4xAF. Your performance will vary from
what I have.
Low level of Detail High Level of Detail
I also am including random screens from
different maps to show differences in detail (these screens
were taken with AA and AF disabled).
Low level of detail one | two | three |
High level of detail one |
two | three |
As you can see, changing settings can drastically
change the way the game is viewed. Ghost Recon is still playable
at low settings and something to drool over at high settings.
How well you can view the game world all depends on what
hardware you have installed. Lesser rigs can get large boost
in performance by lowering in-game settings along with lowering
video card settings.