I'm no longer in a tiz about Cycles. I'll accept that my gaming powerhouse GPU doesn't translate into the best CUDA performer. I'll also accept that big scenes will swamp the GPU and render much more slowly than the CPU. Here was a quick test I did to get my head around the differences in quality / samples and render time.
|10 samples - instant|
|100 samples - 7 seconds|
|1000 samples - 67 seconds|
|Messing around with materials|
I have not had much time to model new stuff -- I knocked this cargo container out in a very short time -- which is why it's not scoring much for accuracy. Does the job though!
|Low-ish poly shipping container|