A GTX 680, but more affordable.
Nvidia’s GTX 680 launched 2 months back with much hype, and not only did it live up to the expectations, but also set a new benchmark on how much performance can be squeezed out with such little power.
GTX 680 DNA
What Nvidia has built is a slightly detuned version of the fastest single GPU based graphics card in the world. Looking at the spec sheet below we see a small reduction in the CUDA Cores and core clock speeds, but pretty much everything else remains the same.
We have the same 28nm GK104 chip inside as the GTX 680, the same four 64-bit memory controllers, giving the 2GB GDDR5 memory 256-bit bandwidth and the same number of transistors. Coming in at 9.5-inches, the GTX 670 requires a 500W PSU powered with two 6-pin connectors.
Interestingly the power supply was moved towards the left side, rather than the complete right side as is usually the case. The fan, which is the same one used in the GTX 680, is thus moved to the right end. Sucking in the air, the hot air is then blown out through the left side of the GTX 670, i.e. outside the case. Nvidia have said that thanks to the power efficiencies of the Kepler architecture and the high overclockability of the GTX 670, which partners can make cars with customized heatsinks and much higher clock speeds. Let’s take a look at one such example. Temperatures remained at a fairly middle of the road 37°C when idle, and going up to 76°C under load.
Zotac GTX 670 AMP! Edition
If we take a look at the new Zotac GTX 670 AMP! Edition, we see some major improvements in the cooling solution. First off this is the exact same heatsink we have seen being used in the recently reviewed Zotac GTX 680 AMP! Edition. Measuring 10.5-inches, the GTX 670 AMP! Edition is also cooled by the massive heatsink, with the large copper pipes extending outwards and two big 80mm fans as the GTX 680 AMP! Edition.
Basically what this has allowed Zotac to do is to overclock the card to 1098MHz core clock (boosting to 1176MHz) and 3304 MHZ (6608MHz effective) memory speeds. That’s an overclock of 20% on the core clock and 10% memory speeds. That’s quite an incredible bump in speed over there. The best part, however, was that the temperature remained at 29°C when idling and touching just 60°C under load!