Maingear Potenza Super Stock SFF System Review

Gaming: Far Cry 2, Lost Planet 2, & S.T.A.L.K.E.R.

FarCry 2
DX10 Gaming Performance

FarCry 2

Like the original, FarCry 2 is one of the more visually impressive games to be released on the PC to date. Courtesy of the Dunia game engine developed by Ubisoft, FarCry 2's game-play is enhanced by advanced environment physics, destructible terrain, high resolution textures, complex shaders, realistic dynamic lighting, and motion-captured animations. We benchmarked the graphics cards in this article with a fully patched version of FarCry 2, using one of the built-in demo runs recorded in the Ranch Map. The test results shown here were run at various resolutions and settings.


Far Cry 2 is a far cry from being a cutting edge title these days, but we've built up an extensive repository of benchmarks with which to compare. In doing so, the Potenza falls behind dual-GPU systems just like we would expect (albeit not by a whole lot), and is nearly four times faster than the Alienware X51 system.

*The Alienware Area 51 was benchmarked at 1920x1080.

Lost Planet 2
DX11 Gaming Performance

Lost Planet 2

A follow-up to Capcom’s Lost Planet : Extreme Condition, Lost Planet 2 is a third person shooter that takes place again on E.D.N. III ten years after the story line of the first title. We ran the game’s DX11 mode which makes heavy use of DX11 Tessellation and Displacement mapping and soft shadows. There are also areas of the game that make use of DX11 DirectCompute for things like wave simulation in areas with water. This is one game engine that looks significantly different in DX11 mode when you compare certain environmental elements and character rendering in its DX9 mode versus DX11. We used the Test B option built into the benchmark tool and with all graphics options set to their High Quality values.

Is it really possible to game at 2560x1600 with a compact system running a single GPU? The answer is a resounding yes, at least with the Potenza, and in many cases you needn't worry about making many sacrifices to visual quality settings. In Lost Planet 2, for example, the Potenza managed a very playable 56.1 frames per second on our 30-inch panel using the benchmark's High preset and 4xAA.


S.T.A.L.K.E.R. - Call of Pripyat
DX11 Gaming Performance


Call of Pripyat is the third game in the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. series and throws in DX11 to the mix. This benchmark is based on one of the locations found within the latest game. Testing includes four stages and utilizes various weather conditions, as well as different time of day settings. It offers a number of presets and options, including multiple versions of DirectX, resolutions, antialiasing, etc. SunShafts represents the most graphically challenging stage available. We conducted our testing with DX11 enabled, multiple resolutions, and Ultra settings.

S.T.A.L.K.E.R. gives us another opportunity to see the Potenza flex its muscle at a 2560x1600 resolution, this time while processing DirectX 11 visuals and using the benchmark's Ultra preset. That type of performance has traditionally been reserved for high-end, multiple GPU systems, some of which we included in the above graph. However, the Potenza proves its possible to game at a high resolution without investing in a hulking system that requires taking out a second mortgage.

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