Alright, it arrived today, this afternoon.
To my surprise it didn't come with any game at all, is that normal? I've often read that it would come with either the latest Call of Duty
or with FarCry 2
, but there's simply none. I've registered the card on eVGA's web-site, and the only thing I could take advantage of by doing so in terms of getting "extras" was a legit serial key for 3DMark Vantage. But is it possible to ask them to send me one of the promoted games after registration?
Anyway, I didn't pay for a game, I paid for a card and I have it, that's cool. In terms of performance I was a little surprised to see a "low" score of only 14,500 points in 3DMark06 without any over-clock (every single hardware parts at stock). But I was pleased to see the score suddenly going up to 17,400 points after I over-clocked my CPU and Memory back to their original OC'ed speeds (see in signature), and that's without over-clocking the card itself, so I'm sure that the score could go quite higher.
I'm just surprised to see that the card requires so much CPU power to perform at "full potential", the thing is such a "true" state of performance would never be known by the consumers unless they over-clock, and not everyone over-clocks, so I'm sure that there's a lot of consumers out who turn out disappointed because they expected a lot from such a card, since they don't over-clock, so their perception of a "top-end GPU" must be quite washed down, and with reason. I'm wondering which CPU out there can give that card its full potential without any bottleneck without any over-clock at all, maybe only the Core i7 965 can... and even then, I'm not sure.
Anyway, I'm glad over-clocking exists!
And... well, the card is HUGE... it's just... wow. But the "worst" part is the fan noise, oh my God, seriously. Above 75% it's just barely sustainable for my taste, in fact it's not. I leave it at 70% and it's alright. I mean at 70% the card is already slightly more noisy than my previous GTS 640MB was at 100%, believe me or not. And starting at 80% it's like nothing I ever heard before, they should as well just increase the card's size a little more to fit some 100mm fans in there so it's less noisy (what's the fan size anyway?). I tried at 100% for fun... Jesus Christ! A jet passes through my house! Dang... it's certainly a negative point of it, and I'm sure I'm not alone in that boat. I'm going to have to invest in a better fully closed PC case (mine has the side panel facing the motherboard removed, all the time) to at least reduce the noise and increase the fan speed.
The thing is I will need the fan speed at 90% or so if I want to over-clock it, but it's way too noisy even at 80%, so I'm not sure if I will ever over-clock that thing, unless I also invest in liquid-cooling. Baahhh... not a problem in terms of finances, I could do it but... I didn't quite expect it nor planned for it, at all, but I might do it, although I'm quite comfortable right now with the already increased performance I received by OC'ing the CPU and Memory, I think if I over-clock the card it's just going to be a hobby or out of curiosity, contrarily to my previous GTS 640MB, this time around over-clocking the GPU is not
necessary anymore (although it is necessary to do so with the CPU and Memory to reach the card's "proper" performance).
Phew... overall, a good 9 out of 10, I really like it. But the fan noise and the card size... it's day a night compared to my previous one (and in fact all others I had even before my GTS), come to think of it, whatever happened to miniaturization over time and with better technologies? I'm sure I read often that our hardware should before smaller and smaller with time... outside of science-fiction and movies that is, well... it looks like it's the other way around (I don't get it, to be honest, but it's understandable because I actually don't understand how it works... so yeah). The GPU Cores and CPU Cores go smaller in size, that's one thing, but the board and the rest of the material and circuitry on which they operate always gets bigger, at this rate we're going to need a two meters tall and half a meter large PC cases in like two years for the future GPU generations.
Anyways, I'm happy, hehe!
I can finally have more than 50 FPS in Fallout 3! (only had around 25 to 30 before on Ultra with 16xAF).