There are six tests in 3DMark 11. The four graphics tests use advanced rendering techniques to compile the scene including tessellation, volumetric lighting, depth of field and post processing effects. The physics test uses rigid body simulation to stress the CPU while the combined test features CPU and GPU workloads. The CPU handles rigid-body physics while the GPU is tasked with volumetric lighting, tessellation, post processing as well as simulating soft-body physics using DirectCompute.
Performance Settings - Benchmarks Only
If you really want to see the raw power of a GPU, test it with an older benchmark that hasn't been optimized. In this test I'm not exactly sure what happened but, suffice to say extra cores = extra speed?, prolly not.
On a related note, 3DM11 does extremely well at testing video card overclocks meaning that if you can pass a 3DM11 benchmarks tests you can likely pass any other benchmark.