Performance in Synthetic and Semi-Synthetic Benchmarks
Futuremark 3DMark Vantage
We minimize the CPU’s influence by using the Extreme profile (1920x1200, 4x FSAA and anisotropic filtering). We also publish the results of the individual tests across all resolutions.
Our SLI tandem has no problems in the synthetic benchmarks. It scores over 10,000 points, joining the leaders GeForce GTX 570 and Radeon HD 6950. The scalability of the SLI technology amounts to 100% here. This test is indicative of what a GeForce GTX 550 Ti SLI configuration can do if the graphics driver effectively uses both graphics cards in parallel.
The single Zotac card is not very impressive, though. It is only 7% faster than the reference sample.
Like in the real games, our SLI tandem is slightly slower than the GeForce GTX 570. The Radeon HD 6950 is also very close, ready to overtake the GeForce GTX 550 Ti SLI as soon as it fails but a little.
The Zotac GeForce GTX 550 Ti AMP! Edition shows that 3DMark Vantage is rather indifferent to the GPU clock rate. We’ve seen the same in F1 2010.
We use the Extreme profile here. As opposed to 3DMark Vantage, this profile uses a resolution of 1920x1080 pixels.
The more recent version of 3DMark produces the same standings. The GeForce GTX 570 is first, followed by the SLI tandem. The AMD solution is 4% slower than the SLI configuration.
The higher loads of 3DMark 11 emphasize the benefits of the Zotac card, so we can see it outperform the reference sample by 10%.
Tom Clancy’s H.A.W.X. 2 Preview Benchmark
This benchmark makes wide use of tessellation to render the surface of the earth. The number of polygons per one frame can be as high as 1.5 million!
Interestingly enough, the GeForce GTX 550 Ti SLI takes first place at the highest resolution only, although in the previous tests it looked preferable in the lowest display modes. The SLI scalability is only 50%, so the SLI configuration might do better with a more optimized driver.
The pre-overclocked Zotac adds to the performance of the reference card, especially at 2560x1600.
Unigine Heaven 2.5 Benchmark
We use Normal tessellation in this test.
The last test in this review is where the GeForce GTX 550 Ti SLI shows its best scalability. It is over 120%, actually. Unfortunately, we didn't see that in the gaming tests. And even here, the SLI tandem cannot beat the GeForce GTX 570 or the Radeon HD 6950.
On the other hand, this test highlights the advantages of the Zotac card which is 22% faster than the reference sample.