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FCAT Frame Experience Analysis Tomb Raider

With a new benchmark technology called FCAT on the following three pages we will look into Frame Experience Analysis. Basically with the charts shown we are trying to show you graphics anomalies like stutters and glitches in a plotted chart. Lately there has been a new measurement introduced, latency measurements. Basically it is the opposite of FPS.

  • FPS mostly measures performance, the number of frames rendered per passing second.
  • Frametime aka Frame Experience recordings mostly measures and exposes anomalies - here we look at how long it takes to render one frame. Measure that chronologically and you can see anomalies like peaks and dips in a plotted chart, indicating something could be off. 
Frame time
in milliseconds
8.3 120
15 66
20 50
25 40
30 33
50 20
70 14

We have a detailed article (read here) on the new FCAT methodology used, and it also explains whay we do not use FRAPS anymore.

Frametime - Basically the time it takes to render one frame can be monitored and tagged with a number, this is latency. One frame can take say 17ms. Higher latency can indicate a slow framerate, and weird latency spikes indicate a stutter, jitter, twitches basically anomalies that are visible on your monitor.

What do these measurements show?

But basically what these measurements show are anomalies like small glitches and stutters that you can sometimes (and please do read that well, sometimes) see on screen. Below I'd like to run through a couple of titles with you. Bear in mind that Average FPS matters more than frametime measurements. It's just an additional page or two of information that from now on we'll be serving you.

Tomb Raider Frame Experience Analysis


Above, a percentile chart of the 30 seconds @ 2560x1440. Here we plot FPS and place it in relation to percentiles.

  • 50% of the time measured frames is doing 29 FPS. 
  • To the right you'll notice that the last 5% of the frames is at 25 FPS or lower. This is another and valid way of looking at performance.

For comparative reasons and a little extra scaling in the charts we included the Radeon HD 7870 With Tahaiti LE GPU from Club3D and a GeForce GTX 650 Ti Boost.


Above, the card at 2560x1440. You'll notice that here frametime scaling (chart wise) still needs to be altered, the charts are incredibly blown up, but on this 30 second run the graphics card manages to remain roughly below 40ms; as you can see there are no real stutters recorded.

The plot is averaging roughly 35ms to roughly 40ms per rendered frame. With this chart, lower = better. Huge spikes above 40-50ms can be considered a problem or indicate a low framerate.

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