Borderlands 3 PC Performance Review and Optimisation Guide
Published: 16th September 2019 | Source: OC3D Internal Testing | Price: |
Following the release of Gears 5 (Performance Review Here) on PC, we know that Unreal Engine 4 is capable of doing some fantastic things on modern hardware. Having used the same engine, Gearbox Software's Borderlands 3 sets itself for a lot of comparisons to Gears 5, at least in terms of graphics quality and hardware/performance efficiency.
Borderlands 3 promises a lot on PC, offering support for both the DirectX 11 and DirectX 12 graphical APIs on the platform. In addition to this, Gearbox has also promised an extensive list of graphics options and support for AMD's FreeSync 2 HDR technology. In addition to this, AMD has marketed this game as supporting Asynchronous Compute, Multithreaded Command Buffers and optimisations for the company's RDNA architecture.
Radeon's FidelityFX technology has also made an appearance in Borderlands 3, offering players a sharper image at a minimal performance cost. The sharpening offered by FidelityFX in Borderlands 3 has been detailed in our FidelityFX deep-dive (read it here). In short, the tool's sharpening feature comes with no major downsides and presents players with a sharper final image.
In this analysis, we will be looking at Borderlands 3's PC performance, how to get the game running faster on your system, and what Gearbox needs to do to improve the game's PC version. Please follow the links below to reach other pages in this review.
- PC System Requirements and Graphics Options
- Graphical Settings Comparison - Low, Medium, High, Ultra and Badass 1, 2
- DirectX 12 is Broken Right Now - It needs to be fixed
- Performance Scaling on Nvidia's GTX 1060 and AMD's RX 580 (Preset Scaling)
- PC Optimisation Tips - All Settings Tested
- CPU Performance Scaling - Why a fixed DX12 patch is needed
- 1080p Performance
- 1440p Performance
- 4K Performance
When testing Borderlands 3's PC version, we opted to use the newest drivers from both the Radeon and Geforce camps. These drivers are AMD's Radeon Software Adrenalin Edition 19.9.2 driver as well as Nvidia's Geforce 436.30 driver.
OC3D is a website that is dedicated to PC hardware, so you better believe that we test every game on a wide range of hardware configurations. This commitment to variety means that we will be using both Intel and AMD based testbeds as well as a range of GPU offerings from both Nvidia and Radeon.
Our primary test system uses Intel's X99 platform, containing an Intel Core i7 6850K at a fixed clock speed of 4GHz. This testbed will use 32GB of Corsair Vengeance DDR4 memory and will be powered and cooled by an HX1200i PSU and an H110i AIO liquid cooler respectively, with everything sitting inside a Corsair 460X chassis. In this system, we are using an ASUS Strix X99 motherboard.
The system below will be used to conduct the majority of our game testing. This system will be used in this review unless otherwise stated.
Game Test Rig
Intel i7 6850K @4.0 GHz
ASUS X99 Strix
Corsair Vengeance LP 4x8GB DDR4 3200MHz
Corsair H110i GT
Windows 10 x64 "May 2019 Update
No gaming test suite would be complete without a large selection of GPUs. At OC3D out current test suite covers Nvidia's RTX 20-series and GTX 10-series alongside AMD's RX Vega and RX 500 series graphics cards.
Starting with Metro Exodus, we began testing new PC games with Nvidia's latest RTX series of graphics cards. In our testing, we currently use the mid-range RTX 2060 and uber high-end RTX 2080 Ti entering our graphics card lineup. In time we hope to have a Radeon RX 5700 graphics card for RTX 2060 VS RX 5700 comparisons.
With this performance analysis, OC3D's main review staff has been able to work together from across the UK to deliver wider levels of performance testing than is common for our gaming content. This has enabled us to add a wider range of GPUs to our test suite for this review.
Radeon RX 5700 Series - Navi (RDNA)
- Radeon RX 5700 XT
- Radeon RX 5700
Geforce RTX 20-Series
- Nvidia RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition
- Nvidia RTX 2080 SUPER Founders Edition
- Nvidia RTX 2070 SUPER Founders Edition
- Nvidia RTX 2060 SUPER Founders Edition
- Nvidia RTX 2060 Founders Edition
Geforce GTX 10-series
- Nvidia GTX 1080 Founders Edition
- Nvidia GTX 1070 Founders Edition
- ASUS GTX 1060 Strix Gaming OC
AMD RX Vega Series
- AMD Radeon VII
- AMD RX Vega 64
- AMD RX Vega 56
AMD RX 500 Series
- AMD RX 580 Strix OC
Keyboard & Mouse
To control this setup, we will be using Corsair Strafe RGB keyboard with Cherry MX Silent keys alongside a Corsair M65 RGB mouse, matching the general theme of this RGB illuminated system.
Cherry MX Silent Keys are ideal for gaming, coming with similar characteristics as Cherry MX Red keys, but with quieter operation. This comparative silence will help keep players immersed in their games, without the distracting clicks that are present in other Cherry key switches.