GRID Autosport is one of those rare breeds that focuses firmly on PC development, while still producing a console rich experience. Codemasters, the devs behind the GRID series, decided to strip out all non racing franchises from their development arsenal and stick to what they are well known for; racing sims.
GRID Autosport is their latest racing game, providing the player with a broad range of cars, track locations and racing styles. Street racing and track are both present. Our Autosport review will be along shortly but first we decided to get to grips with the advanced PC optimisation that Codemasters is becoming well known for. GRID Autosport system requirements have maintained a low entry point, broadening the gamer reach so we are pretty sure that our HD 6670, known to you guys as Jerry, will be able to get some reasonable frame rates once we tweak a few graphics settings...
As always I will share some extra insight into our HD 6670 test rig. You will see from that earlier benchmark review that our HD 6670 is a fair bit lower in performance than a normal HD 6670. To give some perspective, Jerry's HD 6670 is about 20% weaker than other AMD Radeon HD 6670.
GRID Autosport Graphics Engine
GRID runs on the in-house EGO 3 graphics engine owned and tweaked by Codemasters. Owning their own game engine means Codemasters can build the game they want from the ground up. This level of control allows Codemasters to reach lower end PC machines while also delivering what they really feel a racing game should be. Consequently GRID Autosport's EGO3 engine provides great looking ultra graphic setting racing gameplay that can be run on mid to high end machines that are up to about 3 years old, where as you can drop the settings and screen resolution and get a playable game out of a PC machine that is as old as 5-6 years in age. GRID 2 and F1 2013 both used this graphics engine and were released on PC in 2013.
GRID Autosport Advanced Graphics Setting Screens
In Autosport you can choose from 5 preset graphics settings which include, Ultra Low, Low, Medium, High and Ultra. And like most modern games you can also choose your screen resolution via the Video control option in the graphics menu. From here you can set MultiSampling independently as well. During our GRID Autosport tests with the HD 6670 we turned off the Multi Sampling altogether to ensure the smoothest gameplay experience in exchange for a few extra jaggies on the screen. Take a look to the right for the Autosport Advanced Graphics Setting screenshot, so you can see what level of extra graphical customisation the guys over at Codemasters have dropped in for you to adjust.
Adjustable Autosport graphic options
- Advanced Fog
- Ambient Occlusion
- Soft Ambient Occlusion
- Ground Cover
- Vehicle Details
- Vehicle Reflections
- Advanced Lighting
- Global Illumination
- Texture Quality
- Shader Quality
- Anisotropic Filtering
- Smoke Shadows
- Advanced Blending
--------------GRID Autosport Ultra Low Graphics Setting Screenshot--------------
Setting GRID Autosport Ultra Low graphics can really help the lower end PC get some playable frame rates. If you look at the crowd to the right of the screen you can see they look 2D and very low in detail. The palm tree is another example of the pixelated results to expect from this setting. Also the Ultra Low graphics setting leaves a lot of the graphical depth of the cars and shadows out. But as we said already, by choosing this setting you can significantly increase your frames per second and the graphics engine is even very accommodating towards the higher screen resolutions even on weaker graphics cards. All of our Autosport benchmarks (see below) were run at 1080p.
--------------GRID Autosport Ultra Graphics Setting Screenshot--------------
By comparison the GRID Autosport Ultra graphics setting really opens the visual splendour up with GRID Autosport. The same areas we highlighted in the Ultra Low screenshot are substantially better on the Ultra graphics setting. Take a look at the palm tree again and you can see a distinct enhancement in visual quality and detail. The vehicle shadows and reflective surfaces also provide a much prettier racing game once the graphics setting is cranked up.
GRID Autosport Benchmarks Run on AMD FX 6100 + 8GB RAM + AMD Radeon HD 6670
Studying those results for but a moment you can see that Codemasters put in Ultra Low graphics settings for low end PC owners everywhere. But let me say, running GRID Autosport at 1080p in Ultra graphics settings on the HD 6670 with 8GB RAM and an AMD FX 6100 was still just about playable. Personally I would drop the graphics settings for Autosport down to High and just drive. Good stability, good visuals, good screen resolution. With an average frame rate return of around 24 FPS at High graphics setting GRID Autosport ran smooth for most of the tracks we tested. The benchmarks were all run without Multisampling so there were a few jaggies, as we didnt have Anti Aliasing on.
EDIT - Just to clarify, the Game Line changes from game to game. It represents the lowest frame rate that the particular game is in any way playable. It is for fellow gamers who are desperate to play the game and dont mind if it is stuttering a little and looks pretty poor. Any lower than the Game Line and you are entering inconsistent performance territory, even for those of us who would normally play it regardless of how bad it looks and runs. Basically below the Game Line is pretty much unplayable for anyone so dont waste your time.
On the last HD 6670 benchmark test I noticed a person in the discussion area saying, "why bother running game benchmark tests on ageing hardware like this HD 6670?" First off, if you think it is time to retire the HD 6670 from benchmarking, then we will do so. But to answer that question in full and so we dont do anything just because one person does not see why we benchmark the HD 6670, let me explain and then it would be great to hear your thoughts below about stopping the HD6670 benchmarking on any new games.
We often run game benchmarks on a suite of PC rigs ranging from very old hardware through to high end. This gives a good breadth of results that will help people of all rig types establish how well their rig might run the game. Sticking to the HD 6670 and the GD Machine as a staple benchmark rig means we all have a level of consistency that provide us a better understanding of what makes for a well optimised game. You will be able to look across a history of games released and see for yourself how things are progressing in the world of games and their system requirements. And finally, using a machine with hardware that was very popular a few years ago, like the HD 6670, means it's performance capability is likely going to be very familiar with many gamers who have since upgraded and so they will still be able to relate the HD 6670 benchmarks to their current more powerful machine as they once upgraded from a similar machine to old Jerry.
As usual we will be bringing you more benchmarks on a variety of rigs for GRID Autosport. For now, share your Autosport frame rate results with everyone and let people know what your preferred graphics setting are for this new GRID racer title.
If you would like to check out how our low spec Radeon HD 6670 PC performed on previous benchmark tests then try the following; Sniper Elite 3, Murdered: Soul Suspect, Watch Dogs, Wolfenstein: The New Order, Dark Souls 2, Bound By Flame, Thief.