With 4K monitors becoming more and more affordable, 4K gaming is spreading through the ranks of high end PC gaming fast, but what does it really take to push that many pixels? We take a look at a few of the most demanding PC games out right now to find out.
Pre-ample : We’ll be focusing on the graphics card. Why? Well it’s almost always the choke point in gaming performance when you reach 4K. This is of course assuming the CPU and RAM are not bottle-necking it. For the results discussed below we would recommend 16GB of RAM and paring an RTX2070 with a i5 8600K or higher, the RTX2080 with a i5 9600K or higher and RTX2080 TI and any modern i7.
The 4K Entry Level GPU
4K is a LOT of pixels on the screen and rendering them takes a toll on the GPU. Even Nvidia’s latest generation RTX line up can struggle at times depending on the game and in game settings. Thankfully PC games comes with a lot of in-game graphics settings that all can be adjusted independently. This means with a bit of time tinkering with these options you can often find a sweet spot where performance reaches your target and the game still looks great.
With the RTX 2070, 16GB or RAM and a mid-range i5 you can expect 4K to playable at 60FPS or more in games like Far-Cry 5, Assassins Creed Origins, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, GTA V, PUBG, Destiny 2 and Battlefield V, but don’t expect it at ultra. That being said, making the comprises to in game graphics settings in the right way and the visuals will still look great. Take the time to mess around in the settings and give the game a try each time you make an adjustment. It may take a while it’s definitely worth your while.
What can the RTX2070 play at 4K / Ultra settings? Well there’s quite a lot actually.
- F1 2018
- Counter Strike Global Offensive : (CS:GO)
- Sniper Elite 4
- Forza 7
- Wolfenstien : The New Colossus.
Note to mention the still very popular but older or less demanding games like World of Warcarft, Leage of Legends, Starcraft and DOTA 2.
4K with less compromise.
Paired with 16GB or RAM and a high end i5 CPU you can expect somewhere in the realm of a 10-25% boost in performance (depending on the game in question) over the RTX2070. This is enough to push those games that might have been playable at medium settings / 4K on the RTX2070 up to the high presets with approximately the same frame rates.
What can the RTX2080 play at 4K / Ultra settings? Well in addition to the RTX2070 list above, you can add;
- Strange Brigade
- The Division
- Call of Duty : WWII
- Star Wars : Battlefront 2
- Just Cause 3
- Battlefield 1
- GTA V
The RTX2080 TI
The single most powerful gaming GPU on the market today.
Paired with 16GB or RAM and a modern i7 CPU the RTX2080TI delivers frame rates in the range of . This is enough to push those games that might have been playable at medium settings / 4K on the RTX2070 up to the high presets with approximately the same frame rates.
What can the RTX2080 TI play at 4K / Ultra settings? Well in addition to the RTX2080 list above, you can add;
- For Honor
- Middle Earth : Shadow of War
- Assassins Creed Origins
- The Crew 2
- Shadow of the Tomb Raider (RTX OFF)
- Battlefield 1
- Battlefield V (RTX OFF)
- Ashes of the Singularity
- PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG)
- Far Cry 5
4K Gaming with RTX / DLSS
With the additional GPU overhead that RTX or real time ray tracing places on the GPU, it’s little wonder that even the RTX2080 TI struggles to put up respectable frame rates at 4K in the few games that support RTX when it’s enabled. However with it still being a very new technology, the game developers with the help of Nvidia are constantly making improvements.
DLSS or deep learning super-sampling is an ingenious technology designed to use artificial intelligence to scale lower resolution rendering up to higher ones with minimal loss of detail and big gains in performance. Once we start to see a few more performance patches, updated drivers and games start to launch with DLSS and RTX both built in, it may be a very different story.
Battlefield V will be the first to market with this DLSS and RTX combination with RTX being implemented already but DLSS on the way in an upcoming patch. Nvidia boasts enabling DLSS with RTX turned on will result in very similar performance to having RTX off all together which, if true, is fantastic news for 4K gamers.
Customizing a Gaming PC for 4K Gaming
Well now you have everything you need to know, you can jump right in to our custom gaming PC builder (linked here) and get started. Just bare in mind the recommended CPU and RAM pairings with each GPU, don’t forget to set aside some of your budget for the 4K monitor. As for the other components, our custom PC builder page is pretty good at guiding you through the options so you don’t need to worry too much. A lot of the options are mostly based on personal preferences and come down to aesthetic choice, or how much storage capacity you think you’ll need. If you have any questions before you place your order feel free to shoot us an email at any time and we’ll get back to you ASAP.
Choosing the Right 4K Gaming Ready Monitor
As you would probably expect, 4K monitors are not exactly ‘cheap’. Acer, Asus, Samsung and Philips all have 4K monitors at various different physical formats from 27″ to 40″ and they start from around the $900 mark. You can checkout our monitor range by (clicking here) or visiting our online store at www.evatech.com.au
Monitors are something that are frequently updated with new models, so if you’re reading this a few months or more after this article was originally posted, pricing and availability may have changed. That being said, the industry trend is heading towards more options at better pricing so unless something terrible has happened, the options will only be better.