The Sims 4 Performance Analysis

Intel ‘Sandy Bridge’ HD 3000 Graphics

HD 3000 is graphics core featured in the 2nd Generation of Intel’s Core i3/i5/i7 chips and is also known as their Gen 6 graphics core. Gen 6 lacks some features of later graphics cores, notably DirectX 11 support, and is less efficient.

In fact in our testing despite the i5-2537M of our test system having a TDP of 17W compared to the 4.5W of the Z3740 used for our ‘Bay Trail’ test the overall performance was fairly similar. We tested at a slightly increased resolution of 1366×768 but retained the Low-Medium detail settings and frame rates were disappointingly mostly in the 20-30fps range – playable for this title, but perhaps not as strong as we might have hoped for.

Given its age if you are buying a new system you’d be generally advised to avoid anything still using a ‘Sandy Bridge’ based chip as it has been surpassed in all regards by later chips, but if you have an early Ultrabook based around it you will still be able to play and enjoy¬†The Sims 4 so long as you keep the resolution and detail levels turned down…


Intel ‘Ivy Bridge’ HD 4000 Graphics

Introduced in the 3rd Generation Intel Core series products, the Gen 7 graphics core of the ‘Ivy Bridge’ product line is a significant step up over the ‘Sandy Bridge’ core both in terms of performance and features, gaining additional Execution Units (16, up from 12) and support for technologies such as DirectX 11.

We’ve yet to test The Sims 4 on HD 4000, but our conservative estimates suggest that 1366×768 at low-medium detail settings should be a fairly realistic starting point for a playable experience on these systems with better frame rates than seen on HD 3000.

As with ‘Sandy Bridge’ however if you are buying a new laptop it is worth remembering that the ‘Ivy Bridge’ platform is now 2 generations old in Ultrabook, so you may want to focus on finding something based around the later Haswell and Broadwell platforms which offer both improved performance and battery life…

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