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Reviews - Featured Reviews: Video Cards
Written by Olin Coles   
Thursday, 13 September 2012
Table of Contents: Page Index
EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB SuperClocked
First Look: EVGA GTX660 SC
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
EVGA Precision Overclocking
EVGA GeForce GTX 660 SC 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.

This article discusses the factory-overclocked EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB SuperClocked video card, our power consumption results are not representative of the entire GTX 660-series products that use the reference design. Both the reference design and the EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB SuperClocked require a single 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, which should include the required 6-pin PCI-E connection without the use of an adapter. In our test results the EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB SuperClocked consumed only 12W at idle, and 145W 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...

EVGA GTX 660 SC 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
EVGA GeForce GTX 660 SC 20°C 28°C 72°C 4/10
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 we've 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 low idle temperature, and translates into modest full-load temperatures. While EVGA's reference design works exceptionally well at cooling an overclocked GPU, there are a few thermal management features that separate the GTX 660 from the 680 series and in my estimation these differences amount to the same cooling performance but a bit more fan noise from the GTX 660. For a mainstream graphics card that costs half as much as the top-end GTX 680, there's something good to be said about similar GPU-cooling performance.



 

Comments 

 
# Prices a bit higherWade 2012-09-13 11:52
Newegg $299.99, Amazon $309.99, J&R $319.99, TigerDirect $329.99, MacMall $363.99 - these start about 25% higher than the listed MSRP but, as Olin pointed out, this is the first month and they are sure to change. I would expect the prices to become lower as the holidays approach and this is the best card for the money that I have seen in a couple of years.
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# RE: Prices a bit higherOlin Coles 2012-09-13 12:46
I think you've got the wrong product, because this is the GTX 660 and not the 660 Ti. Newegg lists the EVGA GeForce GTX 660 SuperClocked for $229.99
newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130826
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# RE: Prices a bit higherWade 2012-09-13 13:58
I think you are right, Olin - my mistake. It is difficult to find listings/prices for the SC - in fact I can only find the one you supplied. Most vendors are listing the GTX 660 Ti SC because that version is also SuperClocked. I hope this does not portend short supplies and is just a temporary deficit while vendors stock up.
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# RE: RE: Prices a bit higherOlin Coles 2012-09-17 07:54
Less than a week later, this card is now priced for $224.99 at Newegg.
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# value- 8.5?pabs 2012-09-17 07:50
I don't understand your rating system as you gave the card an 8.5 for value, where you clearly state that the card has "value-packed performance" and dominates cards in its price range and comes close to cards twice as expensive. So the question is ... why an 8.5 for value? shouldn't it be closer to a 10?
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# RE: value- 8.5?Olin Coles 2012-09-17 07:53
A score of 10 would imply that no other product comes close to offering the same value, and that's just not true. It's got a lot more value than most products, but not by so much more that it deserves a ten. Make a decision for yourself, and use our ratings (which we already mention are our own) as a guide.
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# goodamir from iran 2012-09-17 08:45
Nvidia The Best Graphic Card In world I Like It .for evvvvvver

the new product nVIDIA best price and best work its mean to be play
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# Energy MisersDale S 2012-09-23 08:17
Good review, Colin. One of these babies is going into my first build.

These GPUs are getting so efficient that you might just be able to SLI two together and still get by with only a 650W power supply.
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# Easily on 650 :)MRutten 2012-10-04 10:30
Yes, Dale S, you can easily run dual SLI on the GTX660 with an 80plus 650w power supply.

That's exactly what I am going to be building the coming few weeks, putting in a LEPA 650G which gives me headroom to OC both the GPUs and the i3570k.

Incase you were uncertain about it being enough :)

Lovely GPU this one!
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# 660sli psu 600660sli 2013-08-15 05:21
hd 1tera
ssd 128gb
16gb kingston ram 1600mhz
2x gtx 600sc evga

PSU 600 watt

lolz you dont need MORE!
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