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Reviews - Featured Reviews: Video Cards
Written by Olin Coles   
Thursday, 16 August 2012
Table of Contents: Page Index
ASUS GeForce GTX 660Ti DirectCU-II TOP
First Look: ASUS GTX 660Ti TOP
Video Card Testing Methodology
DX10: Crysis Warhead
DX11: 3DMark11
DX11: Aliens vs Predator
DX11: Batman Arkham City
DX11: Battlefield 3
DX11: Lost Planet 2
DX11: Metro 2033
DX11: Unigine Heaven 3.0
Temperature and Power Consumption
ASUS GPU Tweak Overclocking
ASUS GTX 660Ti TOP Conclusion

VGA Power Consumption

In this section, PCI-Express graphics cards are isolated for idle and loaded electrical power consumption. In our power consumption tests, Benchmark Reviews utilizes an 80-PLUS GOLD certified OCZ Z-Series Gold 850W PSU, model OCZZ850. This power supply unit has been tested to provide over 90% typical efficiency by Chroma System Solutions. To measure isolated video card power consumption, Benchmark Reviews uses the Kill-A-Watt EZ (model P4460) power meter made by P3 International. In this particular test, all power consumption results were verified with a second power meter for accuracy.

The power consumption statistics discussed in this section are absolute maximum values, and may not represent real-world power consumption created by video games or graphics applications.

A baseline measurement is taken without any video card installed on our test computer system, which is allowed to boot into Windows 7 and rest idle at the login screen before power consumption is recorded. Once the baseline reading has been taken, the graphics card is installed and the system is again booted into Windows and left idle at the login screen before taking the idle reading. Our final loaded power consumption reading is taken with the video card running a stress test using graphics test #4 on 3DMark11. Below is a chart with the isolated video card power consumption (system without video card subtracted from measured combined total) displayed in Watts for each specified test product:

Video Card Power Consumption by Benchmark Reviews

VGA Product Description

(sorted by combined total power)

Idle Power

Loaded Power

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480 SLI Set
82 W
655 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 590 Reference Design
53 W
396 W
ATI Radeon HD 4870 X2 Reference Design
100 W
320 W
AMD Radeon HD 6990 Reference Design
46 W
350 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 295 Reference Design
74 W
302 W
ASUS GeForce GTX 480 Reference Design
39 W
315 W
ATI Radeon HD 5970 Reference Design
48 W
299 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 Reference Design
25 W
321 W
ATI Radeon HD 4850 CrossFireX Set
123 W
210 W
ATI Radeon HD 4890 Reference Design
65 W
268 W
AMD Radeon HD 7970 Reference Design
21 W
311 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 470 Reference Design
42 W
278 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 Reference Design
31 W
246 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 Reference Design
31 W
241 W
ATI Radeon HD 5870 Reference Design
25 W
240 W
ATI Radeon HD 6970 Reference Design
24 W
233 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 465 Reference Design
36 W
219 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 Reference Design
14 W
243 W
Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 X2 11139-00-40R
73 W
180 W
NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GX2 Reference Design
85 W
186 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Reference Design
10 W
275 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 770 Reference Design
9 W
256 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 280 Reference Design
35 W
225 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260 (216) Reference Design
42 W
203 W
ATI Radeon HD 4870 Reference Design
58 W
166 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560 Ti Reference Design
17 W
199 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460 Reference Design
18 W
167 W
AMD Radeon HD 6870 Reference Design
20 W
162 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 Reference Design
14 W
167 W
ATI Radeon HD 5850 Reference Design
24 W
157 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 650 Ti BOOST Reference Design
8 W
164 W
AMD Radeon HD 6850 Reference Design
20 W
139 W
NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT Reference Design
31 W
133 W
ATI Radeon HD 4770 RV740 GDDR5 Reference Design
37 W
120 W
ATI Radeon HD 5770 Reference Design
16 W
122 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450 Reference Design
22 W
115 W
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 650 Ti Reference Design
12 W
112 W
ATI Radeon HD 4670 Reference Design
9 W
70 W
* Results are accurate to within +/- 5W.

Because this article discusses a factory-overclocked ASUS GeForce GTX 660 Ti DirectCU-II TOP video card, our power consumption results are not representative of GTX 660-series products that use the reference design. Both the reference design and the ASUS GeForce GTX 660 Ti DirectCU-II TOP accept two 6-pin PCI-E power connections for normal operation, and will not activate the display unless proper power has been supplied. NVIDIA recommends a 450W power supply unit for stable operation with GTX 660 Ti, which should include both required 6-pin PCI-E connections without the use of adapters. In our test results the ASUS GeForce GTX 660 Ti DirectCU-II TOP consumed only 13W at idle, and 154W under full load.

If you're familiar with electronics, it will come as no surprise that less power consumption equals less heat output as evidenced by our thermal results below...

GeForce GTX 660 Ti Temperatures

This section reports our temperature results subjecting the video card to maximum load conditions. During each test a 20°C ambient room temperature is maintained from start to finish, as measured by digital temperature sensors located outside the computer system. GPU-Z is used to measure the temperature at idle as reported by the GPU, and also under load.

Using a modified version of FurMark's "Torture Test" to generate maximum thermal load, peak GPU temperature is recorded in high-power 3D mode. FurMark does two things extremely well: drives the thermal output of any graphics processor much higher than any video games realistically could, and it does so with consistency every time. Furmark works great for testing the stability of a GPU as the temperature rises to the highest possible output.

The temperatures illustrated below are absolute maximum values, and do not represent real-world temperatures created by video games or graphics applications:

Video Card Ambient Idle Temp Loaded Temp Max Noise
ATI Radeon HD 5850 20°C 39°C 73°C 7/10
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460 20°C 26°C 65°C 4/10
AMD Radeon HD 6850 20°C 42°C 77°C 7/10
AMD Radeon HD 6870 20°C 39°C 74°C 6/10
ATI Radeon HD 5870 20°C 33°C 78°C 7/10
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560 Ti 20°C 27°C 78°C 5/10
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 20°C 32°C 82°C 7/10
ATI Radeon HD 6970 20°C 35°C 81°C 6/10
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 20°C 32°C 70°C 6/10
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 590 20°C 33°C 77°C 6/10
AMD Radeon HD 6990 20°C 40°C 84°C 8/10
ASUS GeForce GTX660Ti TOP 20°C 26°C 62°C 2/10
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 20°C 26°C 71°C 3/10
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 20°C 26°C 75°C 3/10
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 20°C 30°C 81°C 4/10

As you've seen us mentioned on the pages leading up to this section, NVIDIA's Kepler architecture yields a much more efficient operating GPU compared to previous designs. This becomes evident by the extremely low idle temperature, and translates into modest full-load temperatures. Even more impressive is how quiet the ASUS GeForce GTX 660 Ti DirectCU-II TOP operates, barely changing levels from silent to almost silent as it reaches full load. With an open computer case and my ear positioned only a few inches from the video card, fan noise was almost non-existent under loaded operation. Manually turning up fan power to 100% with utilities such as ASUS GPU Tweak, fan noise was extremely low and only slightly audible.

The ASUS GeForce GTX 660 Ti DirectCU-II TOP video card is by far the least audible graphics product I've ever tested, and at up to moderate load it's indistinguishable from passive cooled products.



 

Comments 

 
# Good valueRealNeil 2012-08-16 07:25
These things are gonna drive market prices down. With such stellar performance from these GTX660Ti cards, AMD will have to do something.
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# RE: Good valuehcforde 2012-08-18 19:55
I think the BOOST bios is suppose to help in addressing that in the 7950 series and the GHZ cards in the 7970 series
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# RE: ASUS GeForce GTX 660Ti DirectCU-II TOPDoug Dallam 2012-08-16 16:28
I didn't read the entire article in depth, so if you have already stated this, excuse the redundancy.

Is the GTX 660 the same card as the 660ti TOP except for OCing?
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# RE: RE: ASUS GeForce GTX 660Ti DirectCU-II TOPOlin Coles 2012-08-16 16:35
GTX 660 is/should be GTX 660 Ti, and the TOP edition is an ASUS special product that uses a very high factory overclock.
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# Reader friendly graphsSudarshan_SMD 2012-08-17 05:45
@benchmarkreviews team
The graph representation you are using looks ugly and are difficult to read. It's bit confusing to read the graph, for instance I read the figure on bar, ok, but what is that figure for? I have refer the bottom of graph again to find what card it is for.
Maybe I am over-reacting, but it can be much simpler.
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# RE: Reader friendly graphsOlin Coles 2012-08-17 07:27
Why don't you give us an example of how it could be done better?
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# RE: RE: Reader friendly graphsSudarshan_SMD 2012-08-17 08:53
Hi Sire,
I am glad you took a notice of it and I hope you are not joking when you are asking for example.
Maybe something like this: ##anandtech.com/show/6159/the-geforce-gtx-660-ti-review/7


Sire, I am in no way saying anything about the content of the review. It's just about the graph. Cheers.
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# RE: RE: RE: Reader friendly graphsDoug Dallam 2012-08-18 16:01
I tend to agree with this. It's much easier to read. I've never liked the BMR graphs.
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# RE: RE: RE: RE: Reader friendly graphsOlin Coles 2012-08-18 16:11
Which is odd, since you've written for us and know that you're free to use/make any graph you like. Of course, then again, you never really made it into the demanding reviews that require charts.
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# RE: RE: RE: RE: RE: Reader friendly graphsDoug Dallamllam 2012-08-18 16:14
Right I've never created graphs or I may have suggested a different style. It's not a huge deal either. but the clearer the graph, the easier it is for readers to glean information at a glance.
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# RE: RE: RE: RE: RE: Reader friendly graphshcforde 2012-08-18 19:53
OUCH!! Let's play nice
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# RE: ASUS GeForce GTX 660Ti DirectCU-II TOPDoug Dallam 2012-08-18 20:37
What's not nice? Olin and I are both making factual comments here. Unless I've said something mean, I see nothing here that would cause me to think anything otherwise. It's good someone pointed out the graphs could be more clear. I think the reason no one has is that it is true, they are a little hard too read, and also that it's not a deal breaker. So no one said anything.
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# electroman0076electroman0076 2012-08-19 10:49
I have always found the graphs used by benchmark reviews to be hard to read the problem is matching colors from the key to the graph, it's often hard to determine the dark colors from one another in particular when they add more cards to the mix.
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# everything's fineresere 2012-08-20 06:10
Hi.
I mean, the review is ok. the board is good, even the comptetition is not bad.
And the graph is ok. not brilliant, but fine. Me genius? neah.
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# Graph ClarityAmyn 2012-08-21 08:49
After reading the comments first, I was intrigued to see the graphs.
I can't say I remember taking notice of them if ever the times I have read any review.
And I think they are fine, even the color coded part. I can understand the color brown and grayish black were a bit difficult to discern, but once I got they are in order on both top and bottom, it wasn't too challenging.
Bottom line: Graphs nice and clear.
One mans opinion.
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