|NVIDIA GeForce GTX 650 Ti Video Card|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Video Cards|
|Written by Olin Coles|
|Tuesday, 09 October 2012|
Page 13 of 13
GeForce GTX 650 Ti Conclusion
IMPORTANT: Although the rating and final score mentioned in this conclusion are made to be as objective as possible, please be advised that every author perceives these factors differently at various points in time. While we each do our best to ensure that all aspects of the product are considered, there are often times unforeseen market conditions and manufacturer changes which occur after publication that could render our rating obsolete. Please do not base any purchase solely on our conclusion as it represents our product rating specifically for the product tested, which may differ from future versions of the same product. Benchmark Reviews begins our conclusion with a short summary for each of the areas that we rate.
First and foremost is our performance rating. When the GeForce GTX 650 Ti surprised me with its arrival, I was caught off guard and lacked lower-end video cards that might compete well against it. The AMD Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition seemed like a worthwhile foe, and while it was easily outperformed in every single benchmark test it still did a decent job of offering a challenge. Lost Planet 2 and Battlefield 3 made the Radeon HD 6970 seem like a good match, too, although that card generally outperforms the 650 Ti. So where does it stand in comparison to the competition? According to NVIDIA the GTX 650 Ti is rivaled by the HD 7770 series, but with these results I presume they're referring to an extremely overclocked version because the 650 Ti trounced it every time. Perhaps the AMD Radeon HD 7850 might match up well, if only it didn't cost $25-40 more.
In the DirectX 10 game Crysis Warhead, the GeForce GTX 650 Ti surpassed the AMD Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition, and trailed behind the more expensive Radeon HD 6970 at 1920x1080. DirectX 11 test results continued to keep the GeForce GTX 650 Ti consistently ahead of the Radeon HD 7770 in all tests. The ultra-demanding DX11 game Batman: Arkham Asylum made use of Kepler's optimized architecture, helping to deliver a very playable 36-FPS. Battlefield 3 gave the GeForce GTX 650 Ti a 5-FPS lead over the Radeon HD 7770, and enabled Ultra quality settings. Lost Planet 2 played well on all graphics cards when set to high quality with 4x AA, allowing the GeForce GTX 650 Ti to keep pace with AMD's Radeon HD 6970. In Aliens vs Predator the GeForce GTX 650 Ti outmatched Radeon HD 7770 performance. Metro 2033 is another demanding game that requires high-end graphics to enjoy quality settings, and although this benchmark favors Radeon products the GTX 650 Ti still pushed past the HD 7770.
Synthetic benchmark tools offer an unbiased read on graphics products, allowing manufacturers to display their performance without optimizations or driver influence. Futuremark's 3DMark11 benchmark suite strained our high-end graphics cards with only mid-level settings displayed at 720p, forcing GTX 650 Ti to produce low FPS result but still overtake the AMD Radeon HD 7770. Unigine Heaven 3.0 benchmark tests used maximum settings that strained GTX 650 Ti's limited 128-bit bandwidth, allowing it still surpass the Radeon HD 7770 but only by a small margin. Taking all our benchmark results into consideration, the GeForce GTX 650 Ti commands a decisive lead past its price-relative competition but also occasionally shadows AMD's more expensive Radeon HD 6970 graphics card.
Appearance is a much more subjective matter, especially since this particular rating doesn't have any quantitative benchmark scores to fall back on. NVIDIA's GeForce GTX series has traditionally used a recognizable design over the past two years with rearward-positioned fan and square corners, but GeForce GTX 650 Ti looks nothing like its siblings. Because GeForce GTX 650 Ti operates so efficiently and has a large 75mm fan cooling it, there's no worry about heated air being recirculated back into the computer case. While looks might mean a lot to some consumers, keep in mind that this product outperforms the competition while generating much less heat and producing very little noise.
Regardless of how you perceive this card's looks, construction is the one area that NVIDIA continually shines. The 75mm fan on GTX 650 Ti is extremely quiet during loaded operation, primarily due to an efficient design but also a result of Kepler's CUDA cores that consume less energy and emit less heat. GTX 650 TI requires a single lonely 6-pin PCI-E power connection, which helps to keep this video card compatible with nearly every existing power supply unit. GeForce GTX 650 Ti has one of the shortest PCBs we've seen from a GTX-series graphics card, measuring 5.65" long, and makes this the perfect graphics card for robust HTPC applications. Even better yet, consumers now have an affordable single-GPU solution capable of driving three monitors with the inclusion of two DVI ports and supplementary mini-HDMI.
As of launch day, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 650 Ti video card sells for $149.99. Please keep in mind that hardware manufacturers and retailers are constantly adjusting prices, so expect it to change a few times between now and one month later. Even though the GeForce GTX 650 Ti easily outperforms the Radeon HD 7770, there's stil plenty of value beyond the basic frame rate since the added NVIDIA Kepler features and functionality run it off the charts. Furthermore, only NVIDIA video cards offer multi-display gaming, 3D Vision, Adaptive VSync, PhysX technology, GPU Boost, FXAA, and now TXAA.
Initially, I was disappointed that GeForce GTX 650 Ti lacked NVIDIA GPU Boost and SLI support. But then it occurred to me that overclocking would be as easy as it used to be, and most users aren't going to buy two of these cards for SLI in the first place with so many other choices available. For what it is, the GeForce GTX 650 Ti performs very well. Our benchmark tests confirmed that GTX 650 Ti can play games like BF3 at 1920x1080 with Ultra quality settings and still get good frame rates. For mainstream gamers who want to step up from aging hot-running graphics cards, the GeForce GTX 650 Ti is a value-packed option to consider.
+ Easily outperforms the AMD Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition
- Does not offer NVIDIA GPU Boost
What do you think of the GeForce GTX 650 Ti graphics card, and would you buy one?