MSI has completely revamped the looks of the GTX 275, one of my editors calls it "MSI Star Trek cooler". Instead of a big black brick the card is now covered by a shiny metal cooler with accentuated straight lines. The two fans look noisy, but they aren't as we will see later in the review. As expected, the card occupies two cooling slots, no surprises here.
The card has one analog port, one DVI port and one HDMI port. Having an analog port is important for many users because they don't want (or know how) to use DVI adapters. If you want to connect the card to your big TV screen you can use the native HDMI output which supports HDMI Audio as well.
For HDMI Audio, NVIDIA requires you to feed an external audio source, for example from your motherboard's on-board audio, to the card via SPDIF cable. AMD on the other hand has integrated a sound device inside their GPUs which is the easier solution for most users.
The N275GTX Lightning can be combined with other GTX 275 class cards in SLI for increased rendering power or better image quality options. Please note that clocks and memory size will be reduced to the lowest common denominator of all cards. So if you add a GTX 275 896 MB for SLI, the driver will disable 896 MB (of 1792 MB) on the N275GTX.
Here are the front and the back of the card, high-res versions are also available (front, back). If you choose to use these images for voltmods etc, please include a link back to this site or let us post your article.