SPECviewperf® 12 – GPU Scores

The SPECgpcSM project group’s SPECviewperf 12 measures the 3D graphics performance of systems running under the OpenGL and Direct3D application programming interfaces. The benchmark’s test files, called viewsets, represent graphics content and behavior from actual applications. It contains more than 30 GB of detailed models, that represent real life workload scenarios for each graphic engine.

SPECviewperf® 12_Splash

FooBench Configuration

Processor Intel i7-4770K Quad Core 3.5GHz
4 Cores, 8 Threads @ 4.5GHz (45×100)
Motherboard Gigabyte GA-Z87X-UD3H
Cooling Thermalright Silver Arrow
Power Supply Rosewill Capstone 550W
Memory 2*8 GB G.Skill Ares DDR3 2400
Memory Settings DDR3 – 2400 / 11-13-13-31 @ 1.65V
System Drive Crucial M4 256GB SATA III
Case Open Test Bench
Operating System Windows 7 64-bit SP1
Drivers Quadro 332.5 // Geforce 334.89 // Firepro 13.251.1

The viewport engines tested under SPECviewperf® 12 viewsets are:

Maya 2013 – Autodesk
Solidworks 2013 SP1 – Dassault Systemes
CATIA™ V6 R2012 – Dassault Systemes
NX 8.0 – Siemens PLM
Showcase 2013 – Autodesk
Creo 2™ – PTC
Energy – SPEC, Volume Rendering, as used in Seismic, oil and gas field simulation
Medical – SPEC, 3D grids in a group of 3D slices (such as from CT or MRI scanner)

All engines are set by SPEC in OpenGL mode, other than the Showcase 2013 that was Direct3D*.

Each model is contained in an animated scene with predetermined frame count, and the benchmark is measuring the time needed to complete the given number of frames from start to finish with various visual and shaded options activated each time, then derives the  weighted average score for each. The benchmark has been run at least 3 times with each card after a clean driver installation, and the results posted are the average score for each viewset. Results are in general very consistent.

*The above was confirmed by intel and nVidia devs contacted through SPEC’s helpdesk.


Benchmark Results

Maya 2013 Viewset (maya-04)

The model used in the tests is comprised by 727,500 vertices, and use a variety of common Maya graphics shading modes.
More Details on the official SPEC website.


Notice the drastic improvement over the previous OpenGL viewport engine Maya was using, which along with the crippled nVidia drivers was leading to undermost performance for all GTX cards. The GTX Titan has no issues to top the chart with the mid-range GTX 660 and the peppy GTX 750Ti finishing ahead of workstation cards many times more expensive than it with ease. In earlier Maya versions, this would be unthinkable, with even outdated Quadros and Firepros dominating over gaming cards.

Solidworks 2013 SP1 Viewset (sw-03)

The sw-03 viewset was created from traces of Dassault Systemes’ SolidWorks 2013 SP1 application. Models used in the viewset range in size from 2.1 to 21 million vertices.
More Details on the official SPEC website.

With Solidworks 2013, we see the same drastic improvements in the viewport engine to allow for gaming cards to flex some of their grunt. Even though GTX cards don’t manage to get the fastest results, those are pretty encouraging. Also note that the intel HD4600 IGP that comes with the i7-4770K Haswell processor, manages to outperform older entry workstation cards in this test.

CATIA™ V6 R2012 Viewset (catia-04)

The catia-04 viewset was created from traces of the graphics workload generated by the CATIA V6 R2012 application from Dassault Systemes. Model sizes range from 5.1 to 21 million vertices, and use a variety of common CATIA graphics shading modes.
More Details on the official SPEC website.

Catia V6 2012 is also much more mature towards GTX cards, though it still appears to favor AMD Firepro cards the most. Notice that the newcomer entry 750Ti is actually beating the GTX 660 by more than 20%!

Siemens NX 8.0 Viewset (snx-02)

The snx-02 viewset was created from traces of the graphics workload generated by the NX 8.0 application from Siemens PLM. Model sizes range from 7.15 to 8.45 million vertices. and use a variety of common NX 8.0  graphics shading modes.
More Details on the official SPEC website.

Siemens NX’s developers apparently didn’t care much to reverse the old status with GTX cards…OpenGL performance with this engine is severely penalized unless you are using a workstation card, with the nVidia GeForce drivers being crippled enough to allow the Intel HD4600 to move – even slightly – ahead of one of the fastest gaming cards on sale today.

Autodesk Showcase 2013 Viewset (showcase-01)

The showcase-01 viewset was created from traces of Autodesk’s Showcase 2013 application. The model used in the viewset consists of 8 million vertices.
More Details on the official SPEC website.

Creo 2™ – PTC Viewset

The creo-01 viewset was created from traces of the graphics workload generated by the Creo 2™ application from PTC. Model sizes range from 20 to 48 million vertices.
More Details on the official SPEC website.

Energy viewset (energy-01)

The energy-01 viewset is representative of a typical volume rendering application in the seismic and oil and gas fields. The 3D datasets used in this viewset are all procedurally generated using a simple random function. In the test descriptions below, medium-res refers to a 1GB dataset; large-res refers to a 3.2GB dataset. The large-res viewsets will exit on cards with less than 4GB graphics memory. 
More Details on the official SPEC website.

Since the only card with more than 4GB of VRam in this group was the GTX Titan, it dominates the chart with a weighted score of 2* benchmarks vs. 1* for the rest of the cards. Since this is a SPEC invented test, I don’t know how those results are translated in real life performance, but it is obvious that it favors cards with fast VRam and fill-rates, without caring about their gaming or workstation pedigree.

Mecical (CT/MRI) viewset (medical-01)

The medical-01 viewset is representative of a typical volume rendering application that renders a 2D projection of a 3D volumetric grid. A typical 3D grid in this viewset is a group of 3D slices acquired by a scanner (such as CT or MRI).
More Details on the official SPEC website. 

Disclaimer: Unless otherwise stated, all the cards in these tables were tested on PCFoo’s testbed with the listed specifications. Due to limited resources, the range of cards available is small. Should you wish to provide a card for a limited time in order to get it tested and included, feel free to contact us at: info@pcfoo.com. You can make it into our Sponsor list 😉


8 thoughts on “SPECviewperf® 12 – GPU Scores

  1. hi there, thanks for the amazing work… i find useful information here could you please put in the description which driver did you use for GTX TITAN? i’m studying 3d and i choose MAYA for my main tool i check on autodesk website they are using a quadro drivers for gtx titan but i tried to install the drivers and is not compatible so i want to know if you use quadro drivers os geforce drivers

    • Drivers used for all GTX cards were of course GeForce drivers. Quadro drivers cannot be used by GeForce cards, as apparently despite being based on same core technology and even same production line for the dies, certain features have been disabled in hardware level by nVidia: even modded GTX cards with altered product IDs to accept Quadro Firmware, might load Quadro drivers just fine, but won’t produce the same results. There should be a misunderstanding on your side or typo in the Autodesk’s site to lead you thinking the opposite is true.

      That said, current Autodesk product versions, including Maya, are doing great with GTX cards & Direct3D (3DS/Revit/ACAD/Mudbox) & OpenGL Viewport 2.0 (Maya) modes.

  2. Hello Dimitris thanks for the great information this really helped ,,, have one question what the quadro or firepro cards is used for now , i mean what the advantage of getting one of them???

    • Amr,
      workstation cards get optimized drivers for the OpenGL API, that was and still is the standard for most professional 3D applications. As “gaming” / consumer cards get more and more powerful, and many companies (like Autodesk) switch focus using Direct3D instead of OpenGL, the niche of workstation cards is getting limited. Depending on the application you are using, a workstation card might be “a must”, or give you diminishing returns for the higher price paid over a consumer card.

  3. Nice review! I don’t know what those “lines” are called in graphic design terminology but when they are added to the graphics they will greatly reduce the performance of the graphics cards, specially the gaming graphics cards GTX/Radeon family.

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