|NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 Video Card Performance|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Video Cards|
|Written by Olin Coles|
|Tuesday, 07 December 2010|
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GeForce GTX 570 Detailed
In some ways the new GF110 graphics processor is no different than the original GF100. NVIDIA claims that the Fermi block diagram is identical between the two, and only the ratio of tessellation, shader, and texture units has been refined. This means that the GF110 shares the same 530 mm2 die profile, shared memory, dedicated L1 cache, and 768KB L2 cache as the GF100. The thermal threshold is reduced to 97°C, and the transistor count moves down from 3.2-billion to 3-billion. Benchmark Reviews offers our NVIDIA Fermi Graphics Architecture guide for a more comprehensive look into the Fermi GPU.
NVIDIA's GF110 GPU inside the GeForce GTX 570 maintains five of six available 64-bit GDDR5 memory controllers (320 of 384-bit possible) to facilitate high bandwidth access to the frame buffer. Nearly identical to the GeForce GTX 480 printed circuit board design, the GTX 580 (pictured below) has been reused for the GTX 570 with very few differences. The first obvious departure from the GTX 480 PCB is the lack of blower fan openings in the PCB. Changes between the GTX 480 and GTX 580/570 are much more subtle, yet make an impact on functionality.
Circled below are the electronic components responsible for power management on NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 580/570 video cards. Benchmark Reviews uses GPU stress tools to measure maximum power usage, although admittedly no video game exists that would ever create comparable power demands. NVIDIA now dedicates hardware circuitry to the task of monitoring power consumption as well as temperature, adjusting performance to protect the graphics card from damage.
With so much circuit board real-estate still undeveloped, add-in card partners may choose to re-design the GeForce GTX 580/570 PCB so long as NVIDIA offers engineering information. Other changes could potentially include the use of higher-density DRAM modules, replacing the Samsung 128MB 1250MHz K4G10325FE-HC04 GDDR5 IC's with 256MB IC parts such as: Samsung 1250MHz K4G20325FC-HC04 GDDR5, or 1500MHz K4G20325FC-HC03. On the GeForce GTX 570 PCB, only five of six available 64-bit memory controllers are incorporated, which reduces the DRAM module count from 12 to 10.
NVIDIA designed the GTX 570 for 219 watts Thermal Design Power (TDP), which trails 25W behind the GeForce GTX 580. Keep this in mind when shopping for a power supply unit, because NVIDIA recommends a 550W PSU for the GTX 570; although I personally feel that a 700W or better PSU would be a safer suggestion in terms of upgrade longevity should you ever decide to pair two cards together into SLI. Benchmark Reviews has tested GeForce GTX 470 power consumption later in this article.
NVIDIA has designed triple-SLI capability into their upper-level 'GTX' family Fermi video cards: GTX 465, 470, 480, 570, and 580. Even though SLI and triple-SLI are possible, careful consideration for heat must be given to overclocked computers systems, since multiple GPU's inside the computer case will further extend the CPU's heat range.
In the next section, we detail the various Fermi products and lay out their features and specifications before putting them to test...