Battlefield 4 benchmarked: Graphics & CPU performance

With roots that stretch back more than a decade and enough fans to justify new content every year, Battlefield is among the handful of franchises that needs no introduction around here. Even if you hate EA's approach modern military madness, you can typically expect Battlefield's graphics to raise the bar. This year's release is no different, of course, having been built with an updated version of the Frostbite engine.

Frostbite 3 enables more realistic environments with higher resolution textures and particle effects. Part of this includes a "networked" water system that ensures all players in a game see the same wave at the same time. Beyond the networking voodoo happening behind the scenes, Battlefield 4's waves are an incredible spectacle. Water battles in small vessels are exciting as your vision can be blocked by passing waves.

DICE also says it has overhauled the engine's Tessellation support to enable greater realism, including improved destruction. In short, watching HD YouTube videos doesn't do any justice to the beauty of BF4's graphics, which may just be the best we've ever seen. Regardless, there's no doubting that Frostbite 3 is on the cutting edge of engines and it's more apparent than ever that the next generation is here...

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Interesting how the Nvidia 780 destroys when on Ultra graphics .. yet put it on High graphics and the AMD 290x destroys..

Anyone care to explain why they are so specialized?

If you look at it again, you'll notice that the highest-performing score is from the GTX 780 SLI. A single R9 290X outperforms a single GTX 780.

I honestly don't know if I can believe these benchmarks. I find it hard to believe a 7850 is more powerful than a 670. I've been playing bf4 for 2 days now and I've been getting 60-80fps on all ultra/2xmsaa.

You can argue the merits of inexpensive video cards and be right all day long. That said, playing this with my GTX 780 with all the effects turned up to max offers such a difference in quality. I've been able to replay so many games that feel "new" because of the eye candy. For around $500 you can get some pretty amazing cards from both manufacturers.

Hahaiah said,
You can argue the merits of inexpensive video cards and be right all day long. That said, playing this with my GTX 780 with all the effects turned up to max offers such a difference in quality. I've been able to replay so many games that feel "new" because of the eye candy. For around $500 you can get some pretty amazing cards from both manufacturers.

$500 for a card that will play BF4 at highest quality is overkill. I bought a new 7850 earlier this year for like $150 and it runs BF4 at ultra with consistent FPS.

Xenosion said,

$500 for a card that will play BF4 at highest quality is overkill. I bought a new 7850 earlier this year for like $150 and it runs BF4 at ultra with consistent FPS.

My GTX 770 with 4GB doesn't play BF4 at ultra with consistent fps. Mostly, yes, but I still have to tune a few things down to high to get a smooth FPS at 1080p.

NeoTrunks said,

My GTX 770 with 4GB doesn't play BF4 at ultra with consistent fps. Mostly, yes, but I still have to tune a few things down to high to get a smooth FPS at 1080p.


Well mine plays consistently around 35FPS, rarely do I see it go below. I have an i7 4770K as well and am running Windows 8.1 - a fresh install on an SSD. Sure, it's not the ideal 60FPS but it's a lot more playable than this review leads on. For not being uber competitive, it's perfectly fine for me.

NeoTrunks said,

My GTX 770 with 4GB doesn't play BF4 at ultra with consistent fps. Mostly, yes, but I still have to tune a few things down to high to get a smooth FPS at 1080p.

Just use High settings especially if you're using a higher resolution.

Well look at me not even knowing what card I have. I just looked at the card and I have a 7870 so that explains why I'm getting better performance than their 7850. It's really annoying that Catalyst cant tell you what specific card you have.

I added the prices of single GPU NVIDIA and AMD cards next to their benchmark results (I used the 1680x1050 results as that's what I run at) and AMD cards are just SO much better value than NVIDIA cards. Like, to a large extent

Not so much now. There was a £100 difference at one point, but Nvidia have cut the price on the 770 and 780 to compete. The NV cards are still more expensive, but not by much.

itll be good on the new consoles but do not expect it to be any where near as good as on a PC capable of ultra graphical settings at 1920x1080 or higher.

psionicinversion said,
itll be good on the new consoles but do not expect it to be any where near as good as on a PC capable of ultra graphical settings at 1920x1080 or higher.

A pc that costs about 3-4 times the console and still has problems running 1080p/60 in anything above "high" settings without stutter..

Ive got BF4 set to ultra setting and i get about 70fps in high action scenes if i face a wall in a lift gets 140ish and havnt seen a single bit of stutter yet so dunno whats up with your computer if its doing that!!!

I think youtube player isn't powerful enough to manifest all the graphic detail. In fact, it use flash that always hog all the CPU resource as much as possible.

Edited by Master of Earth, Oct 31 2013, 9:10am :

Master of Earth said,
I think youtube player isn't powerful enough to manifest all the graphic detail. In fact, it use flash that always hog all the CPU resource as much as possible.

YouTube uses HTML5, Flash is only used for old browsers - and usually old PCs which probably do suffer from what you're saying anyway!

Kushan said,

I'm on the latest firefox and youtube is still using flash for me?
http://i.imgur.com/a3MyTzY.png

Wow, I've not used Firefox for 6 months and I see what you mean, it's Flash and doesn't play as well.
I use Chrome, and I've not seen any Flash videos for ages now, HTML5 is far better but as Master of Earth says it's Beta, but it seems to be on all the videos I've watched in recent months, new & old.

Looking forward to playing it on XB1
Used to be a PC guy back in the day, but it's a money sucking hobby and I have enough of those as it is (oh, also, kids)