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Old 09-13-10, 12:51 PM   #6
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The two cards in this review are good representatives of stock and overclocked speeds. For the purpose of this review, I am not publishing detailed overclocking results of the reference card. Unofficially speaking, I did however attain an overclock of 920mhz core, 3900mhz memory on the reference card. That result matches the core speed of the EVGA FTW Edition, but the memory speed is a bit slower. Overall though, it was a decent overclock.

Since the EVGA FTW Edition is EVGA's top-of-the-line pre-overclocked card, one would think that there would be no overclocking headroom left. In the author's experience, this is actually partially true. With PhysX set to "CPU", I was able to attain higher overall clocks of 955 core, 4800mhz memory. That is a slight bump for the core and a huge increase for the memory. I was able to run 3Dmark vantage at these clocks, and the score went from H7544 to H8229. However, with PhysX switched to the GPU, I was not able to overclock much, if at all. 3DMark and Fluidmark failed at even modest overclocks, or showed a performance decreased until I backed the speeds down to 940mhz core and 4200mhz memory, and at those speeds the performance increase was negligible.

I've never been aware of PhysX limiting overclocking, but this is something I will speak to NVIDIA about, and I will report back here with my findings as soon as I know anything.

Temperatures and Noise

Both the reference card and the EVGA FTW Edition stayed reasonably cool and quiet. During heavy gaming with fan speed set to auto, the reference card peaked at 69 degrees, while the EVGA FTW Edition peaked at 73. The fan was relatively quiet during testing using Stone Giant, remaining at 1100 rpm until 70 degrees and gradually increasing to 1560 rpm (40%) as temps rose to 73. Although this heat level isn't bad at all, I wouldn't mind having the fan turn up a little, as it's quiet enough so that running it at 60-80% in an enclosed case is audible not at all bothersome, and doing so in Stone Giant for example cooled the GPU down to 60.

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