Forza Horizon 5 PC Performance Review and Optimisation Guide
Published: 9th November 2021 | Source: OC3D Internal Testing | Price: |
Introduction - Forza reaches its next Horizon
The Forza Horizon series has always been a favourite here at OC3D, even before it arrived on PC for the first time with Forza Horizon 3. Today, the Xbox brand sits firmly within the realms of console and PC gaming, with Xbox Game Pass making the franchise more accessible than ever.
Unlike Forza Motorsport, the Horizon series has never taken itself too seriously. The Horizon franchise is about having fun, racing at high speeds and exploring a variety of locals. Graphically, Playground games have long showcased themselves to be masters of their craft, creating games that are visually breathtaking and beyond the scope of what many of their peers can deliver. Forza Horizon 4 impressed us at launch, and Forza Horizon 5 promises to take things one step further.
Forza Horizon 5 is a cross-generation title, supporting PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S. For PC gamers, this means that Forza Horizon 5 has graphics presets that are designed for last-generation and current-generation systems, making this game significantly more demanding, and better looking than its predecessor.
Today, we will be looking at the PC performance of Forza Horizon 5's PC version, how well it runs on various hardware configurations and what graphical settings PC gamers should adjust to make the game look and perform its best. The contents section below will link you to various areas of our analysis.
- CPU Performance - Core Scaling and Preset Scaling
- Optimised Settings for CPU performance
- GPU Performance - Preset Scaling RX 6800 VS RTX 3070 Ti
- Optimised Settings - Testing all settings so you don't have to
- 1080p Performance Tested
- 1440p Performance Tested
- 4K Performance Testes
- Optimisation Tip - High is Good
When testing Forza Horizon 5, we used the most recent GPU drivers from AMD and Nvidia at the game's launch. We used a pre-release version of AMD's Radeon Software 21.11.1 driver and Nvidia's 496.49 WHQL drivers.
Before testing, we fully updated our Windows 10 installation and ensured that no unnecessary background applications were running on our test system.
Full System Specifications
Below are the full specifications of our game testing system, which we built in mid-2020 to meet the needs of future games. Alongside this system, we will be testing various old and new graphics cards from AMD and Nvidia, including Nvidia's RTX series and AMD's RX 6000 series.
To help support the website, we have included Amazon affiliate links below should you wish to purchase the same or similar PC parts.
OC3D Game/GPU Test Rig (Affiliate Links Below)
AMD Ryzen 9 3950X Processor with Prescision Boost Overdrive
ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Formula (X570) Motherboard
Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB Series DDR4 3600MHz (2x8GB) Memory
Corsair RM1000i Power Supply
Corsair iCUE H150i RGB Pro XT All-in-One Liquid CPU Cooler
Corsair MP600 2TB PCIe 4.0 SSD
Corsiar Obsidian 500D RGB SE Case
Windows 10 x64
Below we have detailed the reasons behind many of the hardware choices in our test system.
CPU & Motherboard - AMD Ryzen 9 3950X and ASUS ROG Crosshair VII Formula
There is a lot to consider when building a new games testing system. Will this system stand up to the test of time. Does this system contain the features that new games will require, and are we choosing the right CPU platform for the job?
With the next generation of consoles coming with Zen 2 processors and support for PCIe 4.0 storage, it was logical to choose a Ryzen-based test platform. When we built this system, none of Intel's CPU offerings featured PCIe 4.0 support, and we could not build a new test system knowing that it will be outdated as soon as games start to utilise faster storage mediums.
With ASUS' ROG X570 Crosshair VII Formula, we know that we have a motherboard that has capable VRMs to withstand the punishments that a hardware test system must face. With X570, we also know that we can upgrade to a newer Zen 3/Ryzen 5000 should we ever need to.
Memory - Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB Series DDR4 @ 3600MHz
Having chosen a Ryzen processor for our new test systems, we needed capable memory modules which offered clock speed that would allow us to get the most out of our Ryzen processor.
3600MHz memory is the "sweet-spot" for Ryzen 3000 series processors, offering high levels of memory bandwidth while settings AMD's Infinity Fabric speeds to optimal levels. With this speed in mind, we decided to opt for Corsair's Dominator Platinum RGB series of DDR4 modules, as it offers us a great aesthetic, has modules that offer our optimal memory speeds and has relatively tight timings given its clock speeds.
SSD Storage - Corsair MP600 2TB PCIe 4.0 M.2 NVMe SSD
As we mentioned previously, future games are going to require fast NVMe storage. Both the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X will make fast SSD storage a baseline feature of new gaming systems.
PCIe 4.0 devices are an obvious choice for those who want SSDs with the most potential throughput, making Corsair's MP600 SSD a great option for us. With 2TB of storage available to it, it offers us more than enough storage for even the largest of PC games. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare/Warzone will need a lot more 50GB upgrades before we would even dream of filling this SSD.
While faster PCIe 4.0 SSDs are available today, this SSD was an excellent choice when we built this system in mid-2020.
Case - Corsair Obsidian 500D RGB SE
When it comes to PC cases we require two things, a large case (to accommodate large GPUs) that's easy to access and looks good on camera. When new graphics cards start to flood in, we need a case that can look good on video. Beyond that, when testing new graphics cards, we need an enclosure with a side panel that's easy to take on and off, speeding up our testing procedures.
With these requirements in mind, Corsair's Obsidian 500D RGB SE was a perfect fit. It is large enough to accommodate any graphics card without interfering with a front-mounted AIO liquid cooler, and it has a hinged side panel to make component switching fast and straightforward. For our use case, this chassis is perfect.
Power Supply - Corsair RM1000i
Your power supply is the most important part of any test system. There's a reason why rule number 1 for PC building is no never cheap out on your power supply.
Over the years, we have used many test systems which have been powered by Corsair's RMi series of power supplies, and the reasons behind that are simple. They are 80+ Gold rated, making them very power efficient, and we have never had an RMi power supply fail on us. If you read our PSU reviews, you will know that these units are solid performers.
Corsair Link is also a useful component of Corsair RMi series power supplies, as they allow us to see how much power the unit is using at any given time digitally.
We have also paired this unit with Corsair's premium braided cables, which gives our test system a more premium look.
Cooling - Corsair iCUE H150i RGB Pro XT
While we are keeping our Ryzen 9 3950X at stock clock speeds, we do want to do what we can to keep it cool under load. We also want to do what we can to keep our system as quiet as possible. With this in mind, we have decided to use Corsair's latest 360mm H150i series All-in-One Liquid Cooler.
With the iCUE H150i, we can control the units fans, pump and RGB lighting with the same software as our other system components and keep AMD's Ryzen 9 3950X cool with relative ease. When testing graphics cards, keeping other fan noise to a minimum is a must, as this allows us to properly judge the noise levels of specific graphics cards or other system components.