Nvidia’s upcoming DLSS 3 has just been tested in multiple gaming scenarios, and the results are nothing short of impressive.
DLSS 3 dramatically increased frame rates, sometimes up to five times, even in CPU-bound games. So far, it really looks like DLSS 3 is living up to Nvidia’s previews.
With around two weeks until the launch of Nvidia’s RTX 4090, the first reviews and tests are starting to pour in. Digital Foundry was able to get an RTX 4090 in advance and decided to put it through its paces in a number of DLSS 3-oriented tests.
The tests took place in three matches: Cyberpunk 2077, Marvel’s Spider-Man, and RTX Portal. These three titles are early adopters of DLSS 3, and Digital Foundry has received preview builds to work with during testing. While the post was unable to share exact frames per second (fps) numbers, it was allowed to give us a look at the performance multipliers.
As a reminder, DLSS 3 is the latest iteration of Nvidia’s upscaling technology, and it differs from the previous version by adding AI frame generation. This can impact latency, which is why Nvidia has added Reflex as a tool designed to combat this. Nvidia Reflex is supposed to negate the increase in latency caused by frame generation and maybe even reduce it a bit lower as well.
The description of the technology pretty much sums up Digital Foundry’s experience with it. For starters, games that support DLSS 3, such as Marvel’s Spiderman, have an additional option in the settings that allows you to enable or disable frame generation. Enabling it automatically enables Nvidia Reflex.
When it comes to performance, the RTX 4090 did a great job – as expected. The card is far more powerful than most modern titles need, but Spider Man and Cyberpunk 2077 are both demanding, and yet games ran smoothly at maximum settings on a 4K 120Hz display. It was with DLSS 3 enabled.
Games tested with DLSS 3, DLSS 2, and at native 4K resolution. In RTX Portalenabling DLSS 2 improved performance by 329%, but DLSS 3 took a few more steps to 526% native (hidden) fps.
Spider Man also showed some gains: DLSS 2 performance was 136% and DLSS 3 with frame generation was 219%. It’s worth noting that latency has also increased, but not to the point of affecting anything in a game like this. Native latency was 36ms; it then fell to 23 ms with DLSS 2 but rose to 38 ms with frame generation in DLSS 3. Cyberpunk 2077 showed similar but better results. With DLSS 2 it hits 258% performance at 31ms (compared to 62ms at native 4K), but with DLSS 3 the performance drops to 399% and 54ms.
Now, DLSS 3 isn’t perfect. Digital Foundry mentions that fast movements, especially near the camera, can cause artifacts, and HUD elements have their issues as well. However, for the most part, it looks like Nvidia has done a good job with this.
DLSS 3 will launch on October 12 when Nvidia’s new flagship RTX 4090 hits shelves.