Value and Conclusion
|9.1||Today, NVIDIA releases their GeForce GTX 760 using the same GK104 graphics processor as on cards like the GTX 660 Ti, GTX 670, GTX 680, and GTX 770. ASUS has overclocked their GTX 760 DirectCU II out of the box, but only with a relatively small overclock that provides a meager 3% performance improvement over the reference design. The new card delivers not only an impressive 22% performance improvement vs. the GTX 660 but is also priced $60 higher. In the product stack, the GTX 760 will replace the GTX 660 Ti against which the ASUS GTX 760 DC II OC provides a 9% higher performance at $20 less. Compared to AMD's lineup, we see the card 11% faster than the Radeon HD 7950; the HD 7950 Boost variants should roughly able to match its performance--at higher pricing.|
ASUS is using a new DirectCU II cooler with two fans and heatpipes that make direct contact with the GPU surface. Our testing shows that the cooler is very capable, delivering amongst the lowest temperatures of all GTX 760s we tested today. Idle noise levels are fantastic and noise during gaming is good too, but I expected better. Given the low temperatures, it would have been easy to improve a bit.
While AMD's HD 7950 comes with 3 GB of VRAM, the GTX 760 "only" uses 2 GB, which is plenty considering both cards are just too slow to play any game at resolutions that require more than 2 GB of VRAM. Overclocking works well and provides an easily accessible performance boost of around 18%, making the card faster than the GTX 680 and HD 7970 GHz Edition; pretty nice for a $260 card.
Gaming power consumption ends up higher than the GTX 670, which makes the GTX 760 the least energy-efficient GK104 design, but the difference is so small that it really doesn't matter outside of the lab. Any power supply that powered a GTX 660 should be able to handle the additional power requirements of the GTX 760 just fine.
According to ASUS, they expect their card to retail at $260, which is a very reasonable price premium of $10 over the reference design. When looking at cards for serious gaming, this is the card offering the most bang for the buck. The cheapest AMD HD 7950 retails at $10 more and is 11% slower, but comes with three games. So if you absolutely must keep cost down, the HD 7950 would be a cheaper option after selling off the coupons.