Benchmark specialists Futuremark are launching a new ‘room’ on November 22nd as a free update for VRMark Advanced &  Professional Editions. Adding to the existing ‘Orange Room’ and ‘Blue Room’ benchmarks, ‘Cyan Room’ uses a pure DirectX 12 engine optimised for VR.

Finnish software development company Futuremark launched VRMark in 2016, a dedicated virtual reality benchmarking application to compliment their popular performance testing software, 3DMark. VRMark features two tests: the ‘Orange Room’, a specific ‘VR readiness’ test designed around the minimum PC hardware requirements suggested for the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift; and the ‘Blue Room’, a much more demanding test designed to run at 5K resolution, stretching the legs of the latest graphics cards.

‘Cyan Room’ is the latest VRMark test, using a pure DirectX 12 engine built in-house. According to the VRMark website, this test was designed to show “how using an API with less overhead can help developers deliver impressive VR experiences even on modest PC systems.”

Image courtesy Futuremark

As with the other test rooms, the new scene can run on a monitor or VR headset, and runs on a fixed path for consistency. Resolution and other visual settings can be adjusted, with frame-by-frame performance charts. There is also an Experience mode where the user can explore the sequence at their own pace, to judge the quality for themselves. As explained in a previous article, because VR rendering techniques compensate for dropped frames or low performance so effectively, and the experience varies significantly between individuals, Futuremark believe that VR benchmarking should offer a combination of objective and subjective tests.

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Image courtesy Futuremark

The benchmark results will tell you objectively whether your PC was able to meet the target frame rate, along with a comparison with other systems, but sometimes the numbers don’t tell the whole story, and a subjective look around in your headset could give a different impression, depending on how sensitive you are to various VR rendering tricks, like reprojection, which are used to cover up moments of spotty performance.

The Cyan Room scene will be a free update for VRMark Advanced Edition and VRMark Professional Edition. VRMark Basic Edition is a free download, containing just the Orange Room benchmark.

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