Gigabyte Z68X-UD3H-B3: Z68 Done Right

Z68 Chipset-Specific Benchmarks

LucidLogix Virtu

In a nutshell, Virtu is software developed by LucidLogix that allows the use of a dedicated GPU and the CPU’s integrated GPU (as present on Sandy Bridge processors) simultaneously.

There are three modes of operation: ‘Off’ (use of dedicated GPU only; integrated GPU is not being used), ‘i-Mode’ (integrated), and ‘d-mode’ (dedicated).

‘i-Mode’ is limited to a single dedicated GPU, but offers power saving features. The drawback is that it cuts down 3D performance. On the other hand, ‘d-Mode’ offers a multi-GPU flavour, but with no power savings. Both utilize Quick Sync.

Once the Virtu software was installed, I decided to give it a whirl:

I compared the amount of power used by the EVGA GTX 560Ti normally versus when in ‘i-Mode’:

EVGA GTX 560Ti (Normal/i-Mode)

Idle: 71/72

HD Video Playback: 87/95

Metro 2033: 204/205

Next, I took a look at 3D performance (normal/i-Mode):

Metro 2033: 49.9/48.1

Crysis Warhead: 50.6/48.2

Mass Effect 2: 104.8/102.7

*All at 1680×1050

Finally, the results for ‘d-Mode’ compared to normal, non-Virtu settings yielded no changes:

Metro 2033: 57.2/57.2

Crysis Warhead: 58.1/58.1

Mass Effect 2: 108.1/108.1

*All at 1680×1050

As we can see, there is virtually no power saving present, which is a tribute to NVIDIA’s (and AMD’s) excellent GPU designs. Furthermore, for the minimal power savings, there is an approximate ~3% reduction in performance, which in my opinion is not a worthy trade-off.

Taking a look between ‘d-Mode’ and normal mode, there is no difference at all.

Virtu being relatively new technology, hopefully presents more of an advantage in the future. Although I did not test it extensively, the best way to utilize it would be to activate Quick Sync in ‘d-Mode’, maintain the best 3D performance by using a dedicated GPU for 3D applications, and use the integrated GPU for transcoding.

Speaking of transcoding, here is the list of default programs that come with Virtu (pictured above). I fired up the MediaExpresso utility to test video conversion speeds:

MediaExpresso 6.5

*4.0GB MKV to 1.5GB MP4*

NEXT: Temperature, Power, and Efficiency

Page 1: Introduction

Page 2: Specifications, Overview, and Features

Page 3: Closer Look, Specifications, and Benchmark Testing Platform

Page 4: CPU Benchmarks

Page 5: Computation and Productivity Benchmarks

Page 6: Storage and Peripheral Benchmarks

Page 7: Memory Benchmarks

Page 8: Gaming Benchmarks

Page 9: Overall System Benchmarks

Page 10: Z68 Chipset-Specific Benchmarks

Page 11: Temperature, Power, and Efficiency

Page 12: BIOS and Overclocking

Page 13: Final Words and Conclusion