Notebookcheck

GTA V Benchmarked

Florian Glaser, 04/22/2015

Better late than never. Barely 1.5 years after the Last-Gen edition, GTA V is finally released for the PC. We tested it on multiple notebooks, to see if the wait was worth it.

GTA V Logo

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Engine, Benchmarks, and Results

For the original German article, see here.

GTA V is based on the RAGE engine (not to be confused with the Ego shooter from id Software), which has been tweaked with additional engines like Euphoria (character animation) and Bullet (physics simulation). The end result is a spectacular PC experience which offers convincing textures, shadows, lighting and vegetation at high to max settings.

Although now and then objects may appear unclear during fast rides (cars, planes, etc.), this problem of rendering shadows and quality settings exists in almost every Open World game. In a direct comparison to Watch Dogs, GTA V performs better. The lighting is more realistic despite lower hardware requirements.

GTA V
GTA V
GTA V
GTA V
GTA V
GTA V

If you were expecting the PC port of GTA V to be a huge disaster, you can rest easy now. During our benchmarks we almost never encountered serious bugs or crashes. However, we did encounter some issues starting the game on Nvidia laptops. Although the latest GeForce driver, the ForceWare 350.12, was installed, the systems, equipped with Optimus, did not want to start up the Rockstar Social Club, preventing the game from launching. Google contained the answer: open the device manager, disable the Nvidia adapter for a little while, start GTA V and as soon as the Social Club starts, turn on the graphics card.

In general, our experience with the game was not smooth. At around 60 GB (~3 hours download with VDSL 50; the shop version includes 7 DVDs!), GTA V sets a new record (negative) for loading times (game start, save games, etc.) and the integrated benchmark only works if both Intro missions have been absolved.

GTA V
GTA V
GTA V
GTA V
GTA V
GTA V

The system requirements are not too bad. Yes, GTA V would like a quad-core CPU (compare the performance of the Schenker M504 [GTX 850M + dual-core] and the M503 [GT 750M  + quad-core]), but halfway potent dual-core processors, like the Core i5-4200M, can suffice. The same applies to the VRAM. Although the requirements rise to 2 or 3 GB with higher settings (similar to Wolfenstein: The New Order and Shadow of Mordor), the game remains playable, as we saw from the GTX 960M with 2 GB VRAM (quite fluid at high settings).

In most scenes, the graphics card is the limiting factor. However, at low or medium settings, the processor can be the bottleneck (as seen from our desktop PCs which use a Core i7-3770K and a Core i7-4790K and the Schenker W504, whose Core i7-4700MQ is the limiting factor [starting at the GTX 860M]).

GTA V
GTA V
GTA V
GTA V
GTA V
GTA V

The graphics menu deserves praise for the surprising number of options it contains. If you have high-end gear, you can activate MSAA- or TXAA smoothing. The latter can only be found on Nvidia models. Great: if you deactivate vertical synchronization, it is possible to go above 60 fps on the PC version. As there are no global presets, we have to use manually configured settings files which have to then be placed at the appropriate path: C:\Users\xyz\Documents\Rockstar Games\GTA V.

Low Settings
Low Settings
Medium Settings
Medium Settings
High Settings
High Settings
Ultra Settings
Ultra Settings

At this path, the user will find a folder named "Benchmarks," which contains recorded measurements. We do not understand why the files have no overall score and "only" note the minimum, average and maximum frames possible in each of the five scenes. We chose to use the results of the last sequence (pass 4). Due to the short runtime, the first four tests (pass 0-3 = panorama shots with day/night change) are not very reliable. The 2-minute final scene with the fighter jet and car chase is more reliable due to it being closer to actual gameplay.

We still would not consider the benchmark perfect as the minimum frames fluctuate heavily in pass 4, which is probably due to bugs. Furthermore, the average fps can fluctuate during each test due to the randomly simulated traffic (difference of a few fps).

If you disregard the somewhat awkward control with a mouse and a keyboard, the PC version of GTA V is technically okay. In no way is it like the stutter disaster which is GTA IV. The hardware requirements are appropriate, with the exception of a few settings. The same cannot be said of many other games, like Assassin's Creed Unity. Most systems will have some graphical errors (for example, the Radeon R9 280X @Ultra) and sadly the graphics menu does not offer descriptions for the options, which we hope will be remedied. 

Low Settings
Low Settings
Medium Settings
Medium Settings
High Settings
High Settings
Ultra Settings
Ultra Settings

Back to the benchmark: according to our benchmarks, the game requires at least an Iris Pro 5200 at low settings and a resolution of 1024x768 pixels. Weaker Intel chips, like the successful Core i models, the HD Graphics 3000, 4000 and 4600 are not appropriate to run GTA V (the benchmarks should run at above 40 fps). Middle-class GPUs, starting at the GeForce GT 740M, are suited for normal settings and a resolution of 1366x768 pixels.

If you want to run the game at the FHD resolution with high details and 2x MSAA, then you need a high-end graphics card, like the GeForce GTX 960M. Sadly, no notebook GPU can run the game fluidly with max settings and all options turned on. In the Ultra test, even the GeForce GTX 980M suffered at a mere 36 fps. For such high settings, you require cutting-edge desktop hardware (GTX 980 @45 fps).

Tip: Asus will provide us with a 4K display shortly, which will help us add some more information to our gaming benchmarks. How interested are you in 4K? Please write to us in the forum below.

Discussion
GTA V
    1024x768 Lowest Settings possible     1366x768 Normal/Off AF:4x     1920x1080 High/On (Advanced Graphics Off) AA:2xMSAA + FX AF:8x     1920x1080 Highest Settings possible AA:4xMSAA + FX AF:16x     3840x2160 High/On (Advanced Graphics Off) AA:FX AF:8x
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980, 3770K
Desktop-PC
139.7 (min: 9) fps ∼83%
131.8 (min: 14) fps ∼82%
99.3 (min: 18) fps ∼66%
45.4 (min: 18) fps ∼57%
59.4 (min: 16) fps ∼84%
AMD Radeon R9 290X, 4790K
Desktop PC
155 (min: 4) fps ∼92%
149 (min: 6) fps ∼93%
93 (min: 37) fps ∼62%
41 (min: 20) fps ∼51%
51.8 (min: 22) fps ∼73%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M, 4700MQ
Schenker W504
135 (min: 48) fps ∼80%
115.4 (min: 18) fps ∼72%
80.8 (min: 18) fps ∼54%
35.6 (min: 13) fps ∼45%
41.4 (min: 15) fps ∼59%
AMD Radeon R9 280X, 3770K
Desktop-PC
129.5 (min: 21) fps ∼77%
121.9 (min: 46) fps ∼76%
76.3 (min: 22) fps ∼51%
31.9 (min: 8) fps ∼40%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M, 4700MQ
Schenker W504
135.1 (min: 18) fps ∼80%
122.6 (min: 11) fps ∼76%
70.6 (min: 17) fps ∼47%
28 (min: 12) fps ∼35%
32.4 (min: 12) fps ∼46%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 880M, 4700MQ
Schenker W504
132.1 (min: 10) fps ∼78%
122.3 (min: 38) fps ∼76%
62.7 (min: 18) fps ∼42%
26.8 (min: 13) fps ∼34%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 870M, 4700MQ
Schenker W504
133.7 (min: 8) fps ∼79%
107.6 (min: 25) fps ∼67%
50.7 (min: 18) fps ∼34%
21.1 (min: 11) fps ∼26%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M, 4720HQ
Schenker XMG A505
126.1 (min: 25) fps ∼75%
114.4 (min: 26) fps ∼71%
44.1 (min: 14) fps ∼29%
18.1 (min: 4) fps ∼23%
20.4 (min: 8) fps ∼29%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 860M, 4700MQ
Schenker W504
117.1 (min: 19) fps ∼69%
124.8 (min: 18) fps ∼78%
36.4 (min: 14) fps ∼24%
14.6 (min: 8) fps ∼18%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 850M, 4340M
Schenker M504
72.8 (min: 15) fps ∼43%
65.9 (min: 19) fps ∼41%
29 (min: 10) fps ∼19%
10.9 (min: 4) fps ∼14%
NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M, 4702MQ
Schenker M503
79.8 (min: 21) fps ∼47%
73.3 (min: 28) fps ∼46%
17 (min: 11) fps ∼11%
7.3 (min: 1) fps ∼9%
AMD Radeon R7 512 Cores (Kaveri Desktop), A10-7850K
A10-7850K Asus A88-XM-PLUS
54.4 (min: 28) fps ∼32%
47.6 (min: 22) fps ∼30%
13 (min: 6) fps ∼9%
5.3 (min: 2) fps ∼7%
NVIDIA GeForce GT 640M, 2637M
Acer Aspire M3-581TG
52.8 (min: 12) fps ∼31%
44.6 (min: 15) fps ∼28%
12 (min: 2) fps ∼8%
3 fps ∼4%
NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M, 4200M
HP Envy 15-j011sg
58.4 (min: 20) fps ∼35%
44.4 (min: 7) fps ∼28%
10.5 (min: 7) fps ∼7%
3.9 (min: 3) fps ∼5%
NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M, 3720QM
Asus N56VM
52.3 (min: 13) fps ∼31%
35.9 (min: 5) fps ∼22%
8.4 (min: 4) fps ∼6%
Intel Iris Pro Graphics 5200, 4750HQ
Schenker S413
46.5 (min: 17) fps ∼28%
38.4 (min: 14) fps ∼24%
7.2 (min: 2) fps ∼5%
0 fps ∼0%
NVIDIA GeForce GT 720M, 4200M
MSI CX61-i572M
49 fps ∼29%
39.4 fps ∼25%
8.4 fps ∼6%
4.1 fps ∼5%
Intel HD Graphics 4600, 4700MQ
Schenker W504
33.3 (min: 10) fps ∼20%
29.4 (min: 10) fps ∼18%
5.7 (min: 1) fps ∼4%
Intel HD Graphics 3000, 2637M
Acer Aspire M3-581TG
7.5 (min: 4) fps ∼4%

Four of our test models are provided by Schenker Technologies (mysn.de):

  • W504 (Core i7-4700MQ, 8 GB DDR3, GeForce GTX 860M, GTX 870M, GTX 880M, GTX 970M, GTX 980M, Win 7)
  • A505 (Core i7-4720HQ, 8 GB DDR3, GeForce GTX 960M, Win 8.1)
  • M504 (Core i5-4340M, 8 GB DDR3, GeForce GTX 850M, Win 7)
  • M503 (Core i7-4702MQ, 8 GB DDR3, GeForce GT 750M, Win 7)

Three of our test models came from Nvidia:

Intel added:

  • Schenker S413 (Core i7-4750HQ, 8 GB DDR3, Iris Pro Graphics 5200)

The desktop PCs contain CPUs/APUs from Intel and AMD, SSDs from Micron, Intel and Samsung, motherboards from Intel and Asus and graphics cards from Nvidia and AMD.

GPU drivers used: Nvidia 350.12, AMD 15.4 Beta, Intel 10.18.10.14.4156

Overview

Show Restrictions
Pos      Model                                     GTA V
 GTA V (2015)
low
1024x768
Lowest Settings possible
med.
1366x768
Normal/Off
4xAF
high
1920x1080
High/On (Advanced Graphics Off)
8xAF 2xMSAA + FXAA
ultra
1920x1080
Highest Settings possible
16xAF 4xMSAA + FXAA
4k
3840x2160
High/On (Advanced Graphics Off)
8xAF FXAA
 1NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080
151
80
70.5
 6AMD Radeon R9 Fury
46.6
 7NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980
139.7
131.8
99.3
45.4
59.4
 8NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 (Notebook)
167.752
159.652
116.752
51.052
60.352
 13NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970
167.9
159
97.8
39.8
51.4
 16AMD Radeon R9 290X
155
149
93
41
51.8
 23NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
135
115.4
84.352
36.452
41.4
 25AMD Radeon R9 280X
129.5
121.9
76.3
31.9
 27NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960
147.3
146.1
69.8
28.3
 28NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M
135.13
124.14
69.45
28.15
332
 31NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680
134
128
72
32
 41AMD Radeon R7 370
164.23
148.63
57.11
30.81
 43NVIDIA GeForce GTX 880M
132.1
122.3
62.7
26.8
 44NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950
150.2
142
64.3
9.9
28.3
 53*NVIDIA Quadro M3000M
136.1
69.1
29.7
35.3
 54NVIDIA GeForce GTX 870M
133.7
107.6
50.7
21.1
 65*AMD Radeon R9 M390
54.2
12.8
 70NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M
125.24
113.54
43.554
18.24
20.4
 71*NVIDIA Quadro M2000M
121.1
110.1
42.2
17.5
Pos      Model                                     GTA V
lowmed.highultra4k
 75NVIDIA GeForce GTX 860M
117.1
124.8
36.4
14.6
 83NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950M
77.13
71.43
27.833
11.483
 84NVIDIA GeForce GTX 850M
72.8
65.9
29
10.9
 111NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460 768MB
128
105
26
3.7
 155NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M
79.8
73.3
17
7.3
 158NVIDIA GeForce 940M
64.122
54.972
14.772
 171AMD Radeon R7 512 Cores (Kaveri Desktop)
54.4
47.6
13
5.3
 172Intel Iris Pro Graphics 5200
47.62
38.42
7.52
2.9
 174AMD Radeon R7 384 Cores (Kaveri Desktop)
52.7
46.5
12.4
5
 175NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M
58.4
44.4
10.5
3.9
 176NVIDIA GeForce 930M
57.5
50.8
13.4
5.7
 178NVIDIA GeForce 830M
55.3
50.3
12.7
9.3
 205AMD Radeon R7 M270
51.1
43.5
11.8
8.1
 210NVIDIA GeForce GT 640M
52.8
44.6
12
3
 226NVIDIA GeForce 920M
55.9
37.2
8.7
2.3
 240AMD Radeon HD 8670D
50
42
14.6
5.8
 264AMD Radeon HD 8570D
43.7
27.7
11.6
 294NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
52.3
35.9
8.4
 303Intel HD Graphics 520
34
27.1
7
 304Intel Iris Graphics 6100
27.9
22.4
Pos      Model                                     GTA V
lowmed.highultra4k
 305NVIDIA GeForce GT 720M
49
39.4
8.4
4.1
 323Intel HD Graphics 4600
26.352
22.952
52
2.1
 325Intel HD Graphics 5500
23.1
19.1
5.5
2.8
 334Intel HD Graphics 5000
19.2
16
4.4
2.6
 406Intel HD Graphics 4000
26.8
 489Intel HD Graphics (Cherry Trail)
10.8
 508Intel HD Graphics 3000
7.5
* Smaller values are better. / * Approximate position

 

Legend
5Stutters – This game is very likely to stutter and have poor frame rates. Based on all known benchmarks using the specified graphical settings, average frame rates are expected to fall below 25fps
May Stutter – This graphics card has not been explicitly tested on this game. Based on interpolated information from surrounding graphics cards of similar performance levels, stutters and poor frame rates are expected.
30Fluent – Based on all known benchmarks using the specified graphical settings, this game should run at or above 25fps
40Fluent – Based on all known benchmarks using the specified graphical settings, this game should run at or above 35fps
May Run Fluently – This graphics card has not been explicitly tested on this game. Based on interpolated information from surrounding graphics cards of similar performance levels, fluent frame rates are expected.
123Uncertain – This graphics card experienced unexpected performance issues during testing for this game. A slower card may be able to achieve better and more consistent frame rates than this particular GPU running the same benchmark scene.
Uncertain – This graphics card has not been explicitly tested on this game and no reliable interpolation can be made based on the performances of surrounding cards of the same class or family.
The value in the fields displays the average frame rate of all values in the database. Move your cursor over the value to see individual results.

The first mission of GTA 5 running on a Acer Aspire M3-581TG (Core i7-2637M Dual-Core, GeForce GT 640M) in medium settings. Two slowdowns with laggy input reduced the gaming experience a bit

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > GTA V Benchmarked
Florian Glaser, 2015-04-22 (Update: 2015-04-25)