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Written by Olin Coles   
Wednesday, 02 May 2012
Table of Contents: Page Index
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 Video Card Features
First Look: GeForce GTX 690
NVIDIA Kepler Dual-GPU Details

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 Video Card Features

Benchmark Reviews previews the world's most powerful graphics solution

Manufacturer: NVIDIA
Product Name: GeForce GTX 690
Suggested Retail Price: $999.99 MSRP

Full Disclosure: The product sample used in this article has been provided by NVIDIA.

NOTE: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 Benchmark Performance Test Results will be available on 03 May 2012.

Admit it: you knew the GeForce GTX 690 was coming ever since the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 video card launched back on 22 March (2012). It didn't take long for the engineers at NVIDIA to find the right combination of speed and power before they could successfully fit two 28nm GK104 Kepler GPUs onto the same printed circuit board. A mere six weeks later, and now you find yourself reading all about it. So here's a spoiler alert: it's awesome and you'll want it... and this article gives you something to dream about at night.

Of the many platforms available for gamers to enjoy video games, there's no question that the highest quality graphics come from PC. While game developers might not consider PC gaming as lucrative as entertainment consoles, companies like NVIDIA use desktop graphics to set the benchmark for smaller more compact designs that make it into notebooks, tablets, and smartphone devices. NVIDIA's Kepler GPU architecture is an example of this, delivering unprecedented performance while operating cooler and consuming less power in relation to performance than all previous flagship graphics processors.

In this article Benchmark Reviews inspects the features available on the new NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690, a double-slot graphics card equipped with a pair of Kepler GPUs. Featuring NVIDIA's cutting-edge GPU Boost technology, the GeForce GTX 690 video card can dynamically adjust power and clock speeds based on real-time application demands. Using EVGA Precision-X, the GeForce GTX 690 has both GPUs overclocked beyond 1200GHz to produce ultimate graphical performance in PC video games.


NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 690 is the first dual-GPU graphics card designed around their next-generation Kepler architecture, which adopts key aspects from the previous Fermi architecture. Building from the 32-core Streaming Multiprocessor (SM) from Fermi on the GeForce GTX 580, NVIDIA optimized Kepler GPUs with twice the performance per watt using an innovative 192-core streaming multiprocessor (referred to as SMX) that exchanges a double speed processor clock for more processor cores. Utilizing eight SMXs per Kepler GPU, the , the GeForce GTX 690 boasts 3072 total CUDA cores which manage shader, texture, geometry, and compute tasks. A reengineered memory subsystem reduces pipeline penalty for these many cores, and enables the 4GB GDDR5 resident on the GTX 690 to reach memory speeds up to 6.0 Gb/s.

In addition to dual GPUs using the freshly released Kepler architecture and NVIDIA's new GPU Boost technology, the GeForce GTX 690 video card includes several refinements to the user experience. Smoother FXAA and adaptive vSync technology results in less chop, stutter, and tearing in on-screen motion. Overclockers might see their enthusiast experiments threatened by the presence of NVIDIA GPU Boost technology, but dynamically adjusting power and clock speed profiles can be supplemented with additional overclocking or shut off completely. Adaptive vSync on the other hand, is a welcome addition by all users - from the gamer to the casual computer user. This new technology adjusts the monitor's refresh rate whenever the FPS rate becomes too low to properly sustain vertical sync (when enabled), thereby reducing stutter and tearing artifacts. Finally, NVIDIA is introducing TXAA, a film-style anti-aliasing technique with a mix of hardware post-processing, custom CG file style AA resolve, and an optional temporal component for better image quality.

GeForce GTX-Series Product Family

Graphics Card

GeForce GTX 550 Ti

GeForce GTX 460

GeForce GTX 560 Ti

GeForce GTX 570 GeForce GTX 580 GeForce GTX 590 GeForce GTX 680 GeForce GTX 690
GPU Transistors 1.17 Billion 1.95 Billion 1.95 Billion 3.0 Billion 3.0 Billion 6.0 Billion Total 3.54 Billion 7.08 Billion Total

Graphics Processing Clusters

1 2




8 Total 4 8 Total

Streaming Multiprocessors

4 7


15 16 32 Total 8 16 Total

CUDA Cores

192 336


480 512 1024 Total 1536 3072 Total

Texture Units

32 56


60 64 128 Total 128 256 Total

ROP Units

24 768MB=24 / 1GB=32


40 48 96 Total 32 64 Total

Graphics Clock
(Fixed Function Units)

900 MHz

675 MHz

822 MHz

732 MHz 772 MHz 607 MHz 1006-1058 MHz 1006-1058 MHz

Processor Clock
(CUDA Cores)

1800 MHz

1350 MHz

1644 MHz

1464 MHz 1544 MHz 1215 MHz 1006-1058 MHz 1006-1058 MHz

Memory Clock
(Clock Rate/Data Rate)

1025/4200 MHz

900/3600 MHz

1001/4008 MHz

950/3800 MHz 1002/4016 MHz 854/3414 MHz 1502/6008 MHz 1502/6008 MHz

Total Video Memory

1024MB GDDR5

768MB / 1024MB GDDR5

1024MB GDDR5

1280MB GDDR5

1536MB GDDR5

3072MB GDDR5

2048MB GDDR5 2x 2048MB GDDR5

Memory Interface


768MB=192 / 1GB=256-Bit






2x 256-Bit

Total Memory Bandwidth

98.4 GB/s

86.4 / 115.2 GB/s

128.3 GB/s

152.0 GB/s 192.4 GB/s 327.7 GB/s 192.26 GB/s 384.4 GB/s Total

Texture Filtering Rate

28.8 GigaTexels/s

37.8 GigaTexels/s

52.6 GigaTexels/s

43.9 GigaTexels/s

49.4 GigaTexels/s

77.7 GigaTexels/s

128.8 GigaTexels/s

234.2 GigaTexels/s

GPU Fabrication Process

40 nm

40 nm

40 nm

40 nm

40 nm

40 nm

28 nm 28 nm

Output Connections

2x Dual-Link DVI-I
1x Mini HDMI

2x Dual-Link DVI-I
1x Mini HDMI

2x Dual-Link DVI-I
1x Mini HDMI

2x Dual-Link DVI-I
1x Mini HDMI

2x Dual-Link DVI-I
1x Mini HDMI

3x Dual-Link DVI-I
1x Mini DisplayPort

2x Dual-Link DVI-I
1x HDMI 1.4a
1x DisplayPort 1.2

3x Dual-Link DVI-I
1x Mini DisplayPort

Form Factor









Power Input


2x 6-Pin

2x 6-Pin

2x 6-Pin

6-Pin + 8-Pin

2x 8-Pin

2x 6-Pin

2x 8-Pin

Thermal Design Power (TDP)

116 Watts

768MB=150W / 1GB=160W

170 Watts

219 Watts 244 Watts 365 Watts 195 Watts 300 Watts

Recommended PSU

400 Watts

450 Watts

500 Watts

550 Watts

600 Watts

700 Watts 550 Watts 650 Watts

GPU Thermal Threshold









Chart Courtesy of Benchmark Reviews



# builderDB62 2012-05-01 22:45
Just another awesome nVidia card!
I'd love to buy one, but just can't justify it when I already have a GTX580 lightning, and it does everything I need, and does it well!
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# GTX690Hu1tik 2012-05-01 22:47
its a nice card with excellent design but the cost of getting one. no way am I paying from one of them. I'm happy with my 590 :P
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# Nicealfresc0 2012-05-02 00:44
Nice write up. King of cards.
Can't wait for this tech to trickle down to the gtx660.

Does it take two six-pin PCI-E connections because they look like 8 pin to me (page 2 para 3).
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# RE: NiceOlin Coles 2012-05-02 08:21
Thanks- I've fixed the typo.
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# RE: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 Video Card Featuresx3ckid 2012-05-02 06:29
In 3 or 4 years they will realease the 900 series then the 600 series will be very cheap . So lets say if we wait 30 years we will have such a powerful video card that all the cards in the present will be considered toys .
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# RE: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 Video Card Featuresclaydough 2012-05-02 08:06
Between the fast release of the x90 version and the initial suspicions of a gtx 780 in the works...
I am more hesitant knowing that even if another incremental kepler release exposing true Kepler power initially touted ( 700 series )
That maxwell is at worst a year and a half away.

Everything depends on the power given to the new consoles. And since that is supposedly southern Islands. I would be mistaken to wait for cards that would be ablt to handle development in a new console generation. Sadly at best, I do not see anything that woul lead me to beleive that consoles have anything to look forward to ( our best PC experience today is not all that revolutionary compared to a console experience )
Unles Metro 2033 is better than my first impressions.

It's just to confusing...
And not knowing how things are going to develop when as much is critical at the pricepoint of 2 x90 card SLI.
But knowing that the 2013 date of Maxwell was supposed to mean production and not release...
That news now does not mean as much with 2013 a half a year away.
And if console games for the next 8 years will be as boring as southern Islands. I would rather not develop for consoles at all!
( at least last cycle consoles had some punch where the 7800 gtx tech in ps3 had longer legs than my actual gtx 7800! Hopefully, the southern island tech hold big surprises that make me eat my words )
And even if I wait another 6months and there is not a gtx 580 styled gtx 780 release...
Then by that time a maxwell release would only a single year away...
And for the performance and easy wait.

Considering every benchmark I see.
Everything sandy ivy and kepler seem very depressing for the price...
That Haswell and Maxwell will be about the same time I am hoping for a nice surprise then. ( and if consoles are underpowered compared to haswell and maxwell which will be released at the same time... I imagine a glorious future for PC gameing making a comeback )
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# RE: RE: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 Video Card Featuresclaydough 2012-05-02 08:21
If Nvidia's own charts are correct
And two 680 chips scale that nicely! ( big congratulations ovr the improvement compared to the 590s )
And even if they did release 780's in the near future...
I imagine these cards could still be attractive considering that there was no rumors of a 790 card? In which case the 690 could still be attractive even if there was a gtx780 release depending on the price drops after a new version release.
I would not be so supicious if Kepler released with anything close to the kind of power originally being touted. ( 2x the power of fermi? maybe 400 series in SLI to come anywhere close to those claims )
In which case a rurmor of a series that explains the discrepency is more gentle for an nvidia zealot than markey lies.
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# IS this not beast?ssuamw 2012-05-03 03:50
HOLY #!!!!!!!!
this card is going to kick all ATI's and all Nvidia's for sure .
man this card ,OH no im over surprised ,
damn great card.
cant wait until I see the bench's .
I bet this card will score more than 90 fps in metro 2033 on ultra.
this is what a real beast is and should be.
ATI fan boys, this is a total loss. im also an ati fan boy to be honest.
I cant imagine. from the moment I saw this , I fell in love with nvidia .
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# NicePersojet 2012-05-03 05:35
the GeForce GTX 690 has both GPUs overclocked beyond 1200GHz(
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