EVGA GeForce GTX 950 SSC 2 GB Review 5

EVGA GeForce GTX 950 SSC 2 GB Review

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Value and Conclusion

  • The EVGA GTX 950 SSC retails around $170.
  • Extremely quiet during gaming
  • Overclocked out of the box
  • Fans turn off in idle and light gaming
  • Great power efficiency
  • HDMI 2.0
  • Too expensive compared to other options
  • Memory not overclocked
  • No backplate included
The GeForce GTX 950 is NVIDIA's contender for the entry-level $150-$190 segment, where it will compete with AMD's Radeon R7 370 and R9 285. EVGA released an overclocked version that comes with a sizable increase in clock speed, resulting in a 8% performance improvement over the reference GTX 950. This lets the card beat the R7 370 conclusively with a 20% performance gap. The R9 270X is 8% behind and the R9 285 is 11% faster. Against its bigger brother, the GTX 960 it is based on, the EVGA GTX 950 SSC is 8% behind. I would recommend the GTX 950 for 900p gaming, or 1080p with reduced details or less demanding games, like MOBA titles.

Like all other GTX 950s released today, the EVGA ACX 2.0 cooler does a good job at keeping the card cool since the GTX 950 GPU doesn't produce a lot of heat because of its energy-efficient Maxwell architecture. The EVGA cooler delivers excellent noise levels, completely stopping its fans in idle and light gaming, and it is whisper quiet during heavy gaming, barely audible in a completely quiet room. ZOTAC has included a backplate on their GTX 950 AMP Edition, which definitely adds to the product's look and feel, and I wish EVGA had done the same even though it is not a requirement in this market segment.

Power efficiency of GTX 950 is excellent, just like on all recent NVIDIA Maxwell cards. In all non-gaming states, which includes Blu-ray playback, we see power draw hover at around the 10-watt mark, which makes it a good candidate for a quiet media PC. Typical gaming power draw is also low, with around 100 watts, which even the weakest PSU should be able to handle.

Overall, the GeForce GTX 950 seems like a very good card, but it is held back by pricing, just like the GTX 960 it is based on. The GTX 950 is basically a cheaper GTX 960 with proportionately less performance but the same feature set. NVIDIA's MSRP is $160 and EVGA is asking another $10 for their SSC variant, which brings the price close to the GTX 960 for $190, and it offers better performance. When looking at price/performance only, AMD's R9 285 should be on your shopping list as it offers much better performance at an excellent price of $170, a price that could be lowered if you are on the market for used cards. AMD's R7 370 is too slow and barely cheaper and the same goes for the R9 270X. NVIDIA's GTX 960 is another good option if you have a few more dollars to spend.
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