ATI Radeon 5850 & 5830 Review - Batman: Arkham Asylum

Submitted by skipclarke on 25 April, 2010 - 16:17

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Batman: Arkham Asylum is the well received action title by Rocksteady. The game offers very detailed environments with a great visual style and high quality. There are known issues with AA using ATI cards. You cannot set the AA level from within the game, and have to force it with the Catalyst Control panel. All settings within the game were maxed out. I used 4xAA with Adaptive Multi-Sampling (the balance between Quality and Performance) from within the CCC.

The AA implementation produces a greater than expected impact on the performance. I know there are ways to tweak the game to use the AA from within the game itself. However, I believe finding the information and implementing it is beyond the average gamer. While an enthusiast (i.e., target market of both the WSGF and this card) might go through the trouble, many mainstream gamers will not. My testing actually ran all the way down through the Radeon HD 5450, and using the "native" options provided the most consistent platform for testing.

The games runs like a demon in normal widescreen on any of these cards, with 4xAA. The HD 5770 almost cracks 60fps at 1920x1200. However, performance takes the expected hits in Eyefinity, and this is what we are really here to test. At the native resolutions of 5760x1200 (3x1920x1200), the game literally crawls with 4xAA on any card. You will have to make some adjustments for playable frame rates, and dropping to 2xAA gives massive speed improvements.

Batman:AA (pun actually not intended) is a unique title. It is made well, and plays well, but technical issues can really hamper performance. The impacts are so great that 5760x1200 is simply unplayable with any card.

The 5850 and 5830 offer a fairly linear scaling between the 5870 and the 5770. Both the 5850 and 5830 offer strong performance at max settings in widescreen, passing 60fps. Both cards also hit 30fps in 5040x1050 at max settings. Turning AA off allows the 5850 to hit 77fps in 5760x1200. Based on the performance scaling, I expect the 5830 to be around 60fps.

Hitting 60fps

Turning off AA allows you to hit 60fps with the 5850. Dropping to 0xAA/High, and we posted 77fps. 2xAA/High clocks in at 48fps. The only difference between Very High and High is turning Ambient Occlusion on or off.

Batman: AA