How to benchmark your Graphics Card

Benchmarking your Graphics Card is a good idea if you’re having issues with performance. The results will let you know how well your computer is performing, and how well it can cope with graphics based software.

Benchmarking involves two tasks: measuring the speed of your system and comparing that speed to the same task being done on other systems. The latter part is called “benchmarking against something” and can be done with synthetic benchmarks (like those included in popular programs like 3DMark), or by using a program like FRAPS to record real gameplay and then comparing those results to what other gamers are getting.

Extreme performance and stability test for PC hardware: video card, power supply, cooling system.

The first part is to measure your frame rate in games. This is best done in a game that has been heavily optimized for computers (we’ll use Dota 2 as an example). 

Also read >> Can we change processor in laptop ?

The first step is finding the right benchmark utility. There are two main options: synthetic benchmarks, which use canned software routines to test the limits of your machine; and real-world benchmarks, which try to replicate program behavior seen in everyday use. Both approaches have their advantages and disadvantages, but for our purposes we’ll focus on synthetic benchmarks that provide an easy way to get consistent results across multiple machines. Besides, real-world benchmarks are often too complex for most people and don’t provide enough of a useful number to be worth all the time spent tweaking them.

You can also test your gaming laptops or gaming desktops using heaven benchmark software. if you are using a budget gaming laptop or a mid-tier gaming laptop then run this tests to check out your machines potential.

Benchmark utilities work the same way across all operating systems, so you can use this guide with any PC, Mac, iPhone, Android or even Linux machine. Some of these benchmarks can be run multiple times by simply clicking a button or dragging a slider.

3DMarkBenchmarking for gaming performance, VR performance, and thermal performanceFree (basic version), $29.99 (Advanced version)
Unigine SuperpositionBenchmarking for gaming performance and VR performance.Free (basic version), $19.95 (Advanced version)
PassMark G3D MarkBenchmarking for gaming performance and VR performance.Free (basic version), $19.00 (Advanced version)
FurMarkBenchmarking for GPU stability and thermal performance.Free
CinebenchBenchmarking for professional content creation performance.Free
GeekbenchBenchmarking for overall system performance, including GPU performance.Free (basic version), $9.99 (Pro version)
Heaven BenchmarkBenchmarking for gaming performance, thermal performance and stability.Free

How to benchmark GPU using Heaven Benchmark

Not all benchmarks are equal, however, so we’ve pulled together some tips for finding reliable benchmarks that can help you achieve your goals.

When you’re testing graphics cards with benchmarks, you have lots of options available to you. 3DMark is one popular choice because it offers numerous specialized tests that go beyond simple FPS measurements, and there are also free versions of all its professional versions.  

For this guide, We’ll be using  Heaven Benchmark, which has a free version with a generous amount of settings that still let you test everything properly.

With Heaven, you can either run a single test or a looped benchmark that will test your device for a certain amount of time and then repeat until you stop it. There are plenty of settings as well, including resolution (from as low as 800×600 to as high as 3840×2160), anti-aliasing (yes/no/2X/4X/8X), and texture filtering (trilinear/bilinear/16X/32X/64X anisotropic). The benchmark will also take note of your FPS (frames per second) performance at each step; if your goal is to record video, this information is especially helpful.

1. Download Heaven Benchmark :

To run the benchmark on your own machine, head to Unigine’s website and download the latest version. It will come as a zip file with both 32-bit and 64-bit versions inside—you’ll want to open the folder for your processor type (and if you’re wondering, yes, there are 32-bit benchmarks for 64-bit operating systems).

Extreme performance and stability test for PC hardware: video card, power supply, cooling system.

2. Install and Open the Software

Once you’ve downloaded it, double click the executable file inside to install it—it’ll go into your Start menu under Programs > Unigine Heaven Benchmark > Benchmark. From there, double clicking the shortcut will start up the test within minutes. You can also run it from your command line using “benchmark.exe” followed by enter key.

3. Settings and Run the test

The main screen in Heaven Benchmark lets you set some things up before the actual benchmark starts. For beginners, we’d recommend leaving everything as it is on the default Custom setting, which chooses the best settings for your machine. The first drop-down menu lets you choose what kind of test you’d like to run: Entry for low-end machines or Extreme for high-end gaming rigs. The second menu lets you choose what resolution and image quality (called ‘quality’ in the menu) you want to test it at. 

We usually recommend choosing a quality that’s as close to your monitor’s native resolution as possible—this helps avoid forcing your computer to scale the images up or down and can introduce artifacts into the results. Finally, there are two sliders that let you adjust how taxing the test will be on your computer while it’s running—the ‘CPU load’ slider affects how hard your processor works while running the test (usually better left at 100%), and the ‘GPU load’ slider affects how hard your graphics card has to work (useful if you have multiple GPUs).

Although you can tweak the settings of Heaven Benchmark to your heart’s content, the default settings are a great place to start. You can select a resolution and quality level, as well as the anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering, which will help improve the rendering of textures. You should also make sure that you have vsync disabled, since it can cause choppy animation.

When running the benchmark, you can take note of the Score in the upper-left corner—this is how Heaven Benchmark measures overall performance for each graphics card. By default, it will run for 60 seconds and display average frames per second at the end. But if you want to get more precise results from it, there’s a button at the top to let you start it over again and a Settings button where you can change some important parameters for running benchmarks.

4. Heaven Benchmark starts testing

The FPS counter is pretty self explanatory — it provides a figure for the frames per second your card is achieving, in real time. The temperature figures are for your own interest; the lower the temperature, the better. The Heaven Benchmark automatically adjusts the settings during testing to give a realistic representation of how your computer will run with different graphics cards. However, it’s still worth checking over the settings and making sure that you’re happy with them before you begin benchmarking.

Since we’re testing to see how well each card performs, it’s worth noting that there are also a few settings that can affect how well your computer performs in general (beyond just how it handles games). You can find these by right clicking on your desktop and going to “Nvidia Control Panel”, or “AMD Catalyst Control Center”. Here you can take a look at what each setting does, as well as change any of them if you like.

5. Benchmark performance tests

During the Heaven Benchmark run, you are given the option to either let it run automatically or manually control the camera settings. To manually manipulate the camera, simply select the Camera button located in the top left corner. Additionally, you can adjust various settings such as the graphical quality, resolution, and others, by utilizing the buttons located at the top. Experimenting with these options will give you insight into how they impact the benchmark performance.

6. Benchmark results

Upon completion of the benchmark using Heaven Benchmark, the overall score will automatically be displayed. For record keeping purposes, the results can be saved by clicking the “Save” button located in the bottom right corner of the screen.

Upon clicking the “Save” button, the user will be directed to a screen that enables the option to save the results file to a preferred location. In this instance, the results file was conveniently saved directly to the desktop.

7. Compare your GPU benchmark score with others

For a comprehensive evaluation of your graphics card performance, we recommend visiting the Unigine Leaderboards page, accessible via a new tab. The page features multiple leaderboards with a vast array of scores, enabling you to compare your results with ease. Simply select the appropriate preset to view your score comparison.

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