Technical question for new video card & TV

hi everyone. apologies if this is the wrong place to post this…please move as necessary

im looking to upgrade my current zwift setup for the coming winter. i currently have a 32inch tv and am using a computer with intel 4400 graphics. i can run zwift in 1080p “best” mode at ~20-25 fps…which in all honesty seems fine 90% of the time to me. its not buttery smooth when there is a crowd around but im a bit busy biking to not notice too much.

im looking to upgrade my TV to a 42-55 inch (buts still keeping it at 1080) and am thinking about getting a video card as well to unlock the 1080p “ultra” settings. im not sure how much of a difference there is between “best” and “ultra” and was hoping someone could offer some input on this. if there is a huge difference then id rather get a slightly smaller tv and put money into a new video card, but if there is only a marginal difference i might stick with the computer i have now and put more money towards getting a bigger tv instead.

any help you can offer is appreciated. thanks in advance!

p.s. i should mention my video card choices are a gtx 1030, 1050 or 1050ti…so the difference in price is ~200$ CAD from low to high, or alternatively ~5inches bigger/smaller tv

I can’t say anything about the difference between “best” and “ultra” because I don’t actually know what “best” means. I thought they had Basic, Medium, High, Ultra.

But it seems to me that “best” would be better than “ultra”, so I’m confused right out of the gate! :smiley:

What I can point you towards if you haven’t already seen it is this site:

There are loads of benchmarks and information for different video card and CPU combinations, and the filters help you focus on the combinations you’re considering.

I guess the one caveat is that I don’t think the site says when benchmarks are from. Zwift has, I think, had various graphics engine updates over the past few years, and they may have potentially harmed performance on some cards etc. as better graphics were put in the game.

my apologies…it may have been “high” instead of best.

ive used the zwiftanalyizer before however it seems the main focus is on FPS and i cant see whatever the differences are with the levels of basic, medium, high, ultra. im happy with a fps in the mid 20’s with my current rig and while more would be nicer id rather put more money into the TV. IF there is a big difference in the textures, quality, shadows, etc of the graphics then id be more interested in upgrading to a gtx 1050 or 1050ti. if its its purely for more fps then id go bigger TV

One thing you could do is look at YouTube videos of Zwift in Ultra 1080 (if you can find any good ones) and see if you can see any difference between that and what you normally have.

I can’t remember whether Zwift lets you change resolution on the fly, but if it does I’ll see if I can get a few comparison screenies later.

Nick, i have a system with an old i5 processor, 16GB ram ant the nVidia GTX 1050ti. it runs well at the 1440 high resolution and very well at 1080 ultra. my display is a 1080 TV so i don’t know if i get any benefit from running the 1440 so i leave it at 1080. the frame rates i see at 1080 always average above 60fps, even on huge group rides.

i hope this helps.

Hi Nick, the biggest difference between basic, high and ultra profiles is the lighting, shadows and reflection effects. There used to be a video on but it has recently been removed because it is old and needs to be redone. It’s still on youtube. You can see some comparisons here - YouTube

Hi Darren, I wondered myself how graphics performance has changed with each update, so I made this report The performance has stayed consistent as optimizations have been made at the same pace as better graphics were put in the game.