Could not figure if I should send this to the Tech Forum or here, but I slapped it here. GameSpot recently did a run on BioShock, the recently release PC game. Here are their results and comments on each aspect of the performance breakdown.
From the moment you touch land in BioShock, you get the feeling that you've stepped into a scientifically and philosophically misguided world where Leave It to Beaver never drifted out of the psyche. The game takes place in underwater city that's about to crack open from numerous internal and external forces. Water, understandably, plays an enormous role in the game as you'll spend lots of time splashing through it, running around it, and sometimes using it to electrocute your enemies. The developer spared no expense in making it utterly drinkable for the eyes. You're going to need a decent rig to get everything looking just right in BioShock, but even more modest systems can provide a fantastic experience once you knock down a few settings.To see a graph with the full system specs, please take a stroll here.
We used the third-party FRAPs video program to benchmark BioShock because the game doesn't have a built-in test. We created a 30-second run through Rapture's medical facilities for our test. The tour passes through wide-open spaces (or, at least, as wide as they get in BioShock), small corridors, and dark, shadow-ridden rooms. Between these varied environments the test run should be a fair representation of the game.
We've divided our guide into four main sections that have the biggest impact on game performance: game settings, video cards, processors, and system memory.
Game Settings There are definitely a few settings you should tweak if you don't have an up-to-date computer. You can reclaim a lot of performance if you're willing to make a few compromises. Fortunately, the game still looks fantastic at even the lowest-quality settings. We enabled and disabled each setting to see how they affected frame rates, and we've also taken graphics-comparison shots to show you what they do. Graphics There's no getting around it: BioShock demands a good video card. The minimum specs require at least a GeForce 6600 GT, but we'd recommend going few notches higher. Find out how the game performs across a variety of video cards, and in Windows Vista with DirectX 10. CPU We've found that BioShock benefits from multicore processors. If you're on an aging Pentium 4 or a slower Athlon 64, you might have something to worry about. Memory BioShock requires 1GB of memory according to the developer, but we tested the game with 512MB, 1GB, and 2GB of RAM to see how much memory the game really needs to function. The game does load with 512MB of system memory, but the resultant chugging makes the game almost unplayable.