EVGA GTX 670 Superclocked Graphics Card Review

It’s launch day again, and this time it’s for the second card in NVIDIA’s 600 series line-up, the GTX 670. EVGA is one of NVIDIA’s most well-known and well-regarded add-in board (AIB) partners, and we have one of their GTX 670 Superclocked cards to run through our testing.

Specifications & Features

A few things to note that aren’t displayed in GPUz are PCIe 3.0, TDP, thermal threshold, and reference clocks. The GTX 670 supports PCIe 3.0, but since my board is PCIe 2.0 that’s what is shown in GPUz. The TDP of the GTX 670 is 170 W, 25 W lower than NVIDIA’s single GPU flagship, the GTX 680. The thermal threshold is set to 98 °C, and is when the GPU begins to throttle clocks due to core temperatures being too high. GTX 670 reference clocks are 915(980)/1502 MHz, base(boost)/RAM, but this is EVGA’s SC version. The GTX 670 SC has clocks of 967(1046)/1552 MHz, which is a 52 MHz higher base clock, 66 MHz higher boost clock, and 50 MHz higher RAM clock.

EVGA GTX 670 SC Specifications

EVGA GTX 670 SC Specifications

Features

  • NVIDIA SMX EngineNext generation streaming multiprocessor built from the ground up for incredible performance and power efficiency.
  • NVIDIA GPU BoostDynamically maximizes clock speeds based on workload of the game to push performance to new levels and bring out the best in every game.
  • NVIDIA Adaptive Vertical SyncDynamically enables vertical sync based on your current frame rates for the smoothest gaming experience.
  • Supports Four Concurrent DisplaysTwo dual-link DVI connectors, HDMI, and DisplayPort 1.2
  • PCI Express 3.0 SupportDesigned for the new PCI Express 3.0 bus architecture offering the highest data transfer speeds for the most bandwidth-hungry games and 3D applications, while maintaining backwards compatibility with existing PCI Express motherboards for the broadest support.
  • NVIDIA FXAA TechnologyShader-based anti-aliasing technology available from the NVIDIA Control Panel that enables ultra-fast anti-aliasing in hundreds of PC games.
  • NVIDIA TXAA TechnologySupport for new temporal anti-aliasing technique that delivers the ultimate combination of image quality and performance.

I went more in-depth on GPU Boost, Adaptive VSync, and FXAA/TXAA in my GTX 680 review, so please see that article if you are interested in more information on them. Quickly though, here are some key points about those features.

GPU Boost

GPU Boost is analogous to Turbo Boost from the CPU side. What the GPU wants to do is get the most performance it can while remaining around its Power Target. GPU Boost does this by increasing core frequency when the GPU isn’t being fully utilized, this brings it closer to the Power Target. GPU Boost decides on where to set frequencies based on the power consumption and temperature of the GPU, so the overclocking will be limited to the power the card can pull and how cool the GPU can be kept. The same limitations as usual, but the clocks are dynamic and determined by offsets.

Adaptive VSync

Adaptive Vertical Sync does exactly as it sounds, it turns VSync on or off depending on current frames per second. If the FPS is 60+ then VSync is turned on, otherwise VSync is turned off. This helps minimize the downsides of having VSync either on or off only. When VSync is on, microstutter can be introduced when the FPS need to drop below 60 since the FPS will jump straight from 60 to 30 and back without a smooth transition. When VSync is off, screen tearing could happen when the FPS exceed the monitor’s refresh rate. Adaptive VSync turns on VSync when the FPS is high to eliminate tearing, and it turns VSync off when frames are below 60 to keep the FPS high as possible without jumping to 60-30-60. So, in essence, Adaptive VSync narrows the gap between max and min FPS resulting in a smoother gaming experience.

FXAA & TXAA

FXAA or Fast Approximate Anti-Aliasing recognizes edges in-game by contrast comparison, and then “smooths” those surrounding pixels by forming a gradient between contrasting colors. FXAA does its thing quickly and without consuming many resources because it’s a post process pixel shader. Something that can be considered both a pro and con of FXAA is that it effects all pixels on the screen and smooths things are are not effected by MSAA; the con part being that it can effect small text on the screen causing it to be blurry.

Temporal Approximate Anti-Aliasing, or TXAA, is like a combination of  lower MSAA and filters to give looks comparable to higher MSAA without as much of a performance hit. TXAA is meant to be integrated into the game engines, so there’s not an On/Off switch in the NVIDIA control panel like FXAA (yet). Since TXAA is so new and needs to be in the game engines, there isn’t a game that I have to show comparisons between MSAA, FXAA, and TXAA.

Packaging & Accessories

As I’ve said in previous reviews, I like packaging that doesn’t distract you from the product, its specifications, and its features. EVGA’s packaging is just that. On the front of the box, we have the product name, model, and some of its specs and features along the top edge of the box. EVGA goes more in-depth on the GTX 670′s features, shows a picture of the GPU, and lists the contents on the back side of the box.

Box Front

Box Front

Box Back

Box Back

The GTX 670 SC is placed in the center of a plastic clam shell  that isolates it from the edges of the box. I personally like the foam packaging used with the GTX 680, but as long as it works, it’s not a big deal to me. The included accessories are a massive EVGA poster, “Enthusiast Built” stickers, user guide, quick start guide, driver CD, case badge, two Molex-to-6pin power adapters, and a DVI-to-VGA adapter.

EVGA GTX 670 SC in Clamshell

EVGA GTX 670 SC in Clamshell

Included Accessories

Included Accessories

The EVGA GTX 670 SC

The GTX 670 SC has the same shroud as the Signature series of EVGA’s GTX 680. It’s very streamlined and almost perfectly rectangular. The front of the card has a mesh across the front in the black area to give it a unique texture. The light gray, almost white, banners displaying “EVGA” and “GTX 670″ are also a unique look of the EVGA’s cards. So, the color scheme is pretty neutral and should look good in most builds.

EVGA GTX 670 SC

EVGA GTX 670 SC

On the top of the card, the GTX 670 has two SLI connectors for up to 4-way SLI and it has two 6-pin PCIe power connectors just like the GTX 680. The power connectors seems to be in an odd place that’s almost in the center of the card instead of on the corner like usual. We’ll see the reason behind this connector positioning a little further down in the review.

You may also notice that it looks like the card is thicker towards the video output end and thinner towards the fan end. If so, your eyes are not deceiving you. The card is actually around 3 mm thinner at the fan end to allow some room for intake air in multi-GPU setups where the GPUs are right next to each other on the motherboard.

EVGA GTX 670 SC

EVGA GTX 670 SC

EVGA GTX 670 SC

EVGA GTX 670 SC

The video outputs on the GTX 670 are the same as the GTX 680: DVI-D, DVI-I, HDMI, and DisplayPort. The GTX 670 supports for up to four monitors in the form of a three monitor Surround setup plus a fourth auxiliary display for web, music, chat, etc.

Video Outputs

Video Outputs

On to the back of the card, we see something very surprising. The PCB is quite a bit shorter than expected when looking at the overall size of the card. The PCB on the GTX 680 is ~10″ long, whereas the GTX 670 PCB is ~6.8″ long, that saves roughly 3.2″ * 3.875″ = 12.4 in2 on the reference PCB. Since PCIe power connectors are always located on the end of GPU PCBs, the shortened GTX 670 PCB is the reason that the two 6-pin PCIe power connectors aren’t on the end of the shroud like usual and are located more toward the center of the card. The PCB length of 6.8″ plus the fan/shroud extending 2.7″ further makes the overall length of the GTX 670 SC is 9.5″, which is 0.5″ shorter than the GTX 680.

EVGA GTX 670 SC Backside

EVGA GTX 670 SC Backside

EVGA GTX 670 SC Length

EVGA GTX 670 SC Length

Interestingly, four of the eight vRAM chips are located on the back side of the PCB. I’m not sure why all the vRAM wasn’t put on the same side of the PCB, but it is what it is. The vRAM consists of eight Hynix 2nd Gen GDDR5 3000 MHz @ 1.5 V chips for a total of 2 GB vRAM. The GTX 680 used the 1st Gen Hynix chips rated at the same speed and voltage, but whether that means better or worse overclocking capability remains to seen.

Hynix H5GQ2H24AFR-R0C vRAM Chips

Hynix H5GQ2H24AFR-R0C vRAM Chips

Okay, time to get naked! Removing the shroud from the card reveals the VRM heatsink, core heatsink, and the blower style fan. When the fan is removed it looks like the card is broken in half because it has a shorter PCB than we’re used to. The VRM heatsink is attached with two pins on either side of the heatsink with a thermal pad between the chips and heatsink. The heatsink is attached well, as can be seen from the  deep indentations in the thermal pad. The core’s heatsink is attached by the typical spring-loaded screws, and it seems there was plenty of pressure that easily pushed excess TIM out the sides of the core.

Shroud Removed

Shroud Removed

Fan Removed

Fan Removed

Heatsinks Removed

Heatsinks Removed

As you can see below, NVIDIA made a number of adjustments to the reference board to save space, which can help the GTX 670 fit into SFF cases. They were able to move the GTX 670’s power section to the left side of the GPU. It is also now much closer to the GPU than on traditional boards, which improves power integrity and increases efficiency. With the GTX 670’s power circuitry moved to the other side of the board, the right side of the PCB was pretty much empty and was removed altogether to save space. Also, the fifth unused power phase on the GTX 680 reference board was removed altogether, which saved a little space. Even though the actual GTX 670 PCB is much shorter than the GTX 680 PCB, NVIDIA used the same type of cooling solution on the GTX 670 as they did on the GTX 680.

The power section of the card looks to be 4 phase for the core and 2 phase for the vRAM. This is the same as the reference GTX 680 with 4 of its 5 available phases active for the core and 2 phases for the vRAM. So, there should be plenty of clean power for the GTX 670.

A close up of the core shows that the GTX 670 uses the same GK104 core as the GTX 680. The difference in the GTX 670 core is that one of the eight SMX units is disabled resulting in 1344 CUDA cores as opposed to 1536 on the GTX 680.

PCB Close Up

PCB Close Up

GK104 Core

GK104 Cor

Test Setup

Test Setup
CPU Intel i7 2700K @ 3.4 GHz (Mimic i7 2600K)
Motherboard EVGA P67 FTW
RAM 2×2 GB Corsair Dominator GT DDR3-1600 6-6-6-20
Graphics Card EVGA GTX 670 SC
EVGA GTX 680
EVGA GTX 580 Classified
Hard Drive 1 TB Samsung Spinpoint F3
Power Supply SeaSonic SS-1000XP (80+ Platinum)
Operating System Windows 7 x64 SP1 (Fresh Install)
Graphics Drivers nVidia 301.34 Drivers (GTX 670 SC)
nVidia 301.24 Drivers (retested GTX 680)
nVidia 285.62 Drivers (GTX 580 Classified)
Equipment
Tenma Sound Level Meter
Fluke 52 II Dual Input Thermometer
Kill-a-Watt Meter

Benchmarks & Settings

  • Synthetics – Performance for 3DMark, Xtreme for Heaven, PhysX off when applicable
  • Hawx2 DX10 – 1920×1080, settings maxed, tessellation off
  • Alien vs Predator High – 1920×1080, settings maxed
  • STALKER: Call of Pripyat – 1920×1080, 4x MSAA, maxed settings, tessellation on, Sunshafts test
  • Dirt2 & Dirt3 – 1920×1080, 8x MSAA, settings maxed
  • Metro 2033 – 1920×1080, settings maxed, PhysX off, DoF On, Frontline
  • Battlefield 3 – 1920×1080, settings “Ultra”, manual runs of first mission in single player

Performance Results

Synthetic Tests

Overall, we have a great showing here from the GTX 670 SC. The GTX 680 only averages 4.2% better than the GTX 670 SC in the synthetic tests. The widest difference between the GTX 670 and GTX 680 are in the newer, GPU intensive benchmarks, 3DMark11 and Unigine Heaven; resulting in the GTX 680 coming out 6.4-8.7% better than its younger brother. What’s most surprising to me is that the GTX 670 is on par or beats AMD’s flagship GPU, the HD 7970, in all the tests except for 3DMark03. Kepler just doesn’t seem to do well in 3DMark03 at all, getting beat by the HD 7970, HD 7950, and even the GTX 580.

Game Tests

The game tests are also very surprising. The GTX 670 results range from 5.5% worse than the GTX 680 up to 2.3% better than the GTX 680! As far as competing with AMD, the GTX 670 easily beats the HD 7950 is every test I have data on, and it even beats the HD 7970 in a couple of cases. Based on the percentages, it seems that the HD 7970 wins by a large margin on Metro 2033, STALKER, and Alien vs Predator, but the actual FPS between the cards are not very high, in the 2-4 FPS range. So, another good showing with the GTX 670 performing better than expected.

Raw Scores

For your viewing pleasure, here are the recorded scores that were used to create the graphs above. Since I didn’t personally test the HD 7970 and HD 7950, I don’t have numbers for Dirt3 and Metro 2033.

 

Overclocking

NVIDIA GPU Boost

Here’s NVIDIA’s explanation of boost clock, and I replaced GTX 680 numbers with the GTX 670 numbers.

The “Boost Clock” is the average clock frequency the GPU will run under load in many typical non-TDP apps that require less GPU power consumption. On average, the typical Boost Clock provided by GPU Boost in GeForce GTX 670 is 980 MHz, an improvement of just over 7%. The Boost Clock is a typical clock level achieved running a typical game in a typical environment.

- NVIDIA

When testing and running 3D applications, the boost clock is usually even higher than the listed boost clock. This GTX 670 SC sample boosts to 1175 MHz during 3DMark11 and EVGA’s OC Scanner X stress test, that’s 129 MHz past its listed boost clock and 195 MHz higher than reference boost clock. This actual boost clock is 91.4 MHz higher than our GTX 680 sample, which is most likely a main reason the GTX 670 SC performed so well in our tests compared to the GTX 680 and HD 7970. The only other reason that comes to mind is possible driver differences in 301.24 and 301.34.

EVGA GTX 670 SC GPU Boost

Software

EVGA released new versions of their Precision X and OC Scanner X software since the GTX 680 review. Precision X is where all the GPU settings can be changed, such as power target, clock offsets, voltages, fan speed, etc., and it also monitors all the settings of the GPU in its Performance Log. Something new to these new software versions is the monitoring of the Power Target in both Precision X and OC Scanner X. The GTX 670 skin for Precision X matches the GPU’s looks with the circular mesh and white/gray/black color scheme with green accents for NVIDIA. OC Scanner X is a GPU stressing program that helps determine stable overclocks by scanning for artifacts during the test, and it gives you a quick idea of loaded temperatures as well.

EVGA Precision X 3.0.2

EVGA OC Scanner X 2.1.0

EVGA OC Scanner X 2.1.2

Stock Air Results

The first thing I did when overclocking the GTX 670 SC is to increase the Power Target to the max of 122%, this is 10% lower than the max Power Target on the GTX 680. Once that is set the GPU is allowed to pull more power, which allows GPU Boost to reach higher frequencies and voltages. On the GTX 680, I was basically stuck to using 1.175 V, but on the GTX 670 SC I can make the GPU use 1.162 V or 1.175 V when clocking the core. Being able to use that little bit less voltage actually allowed me to clock higher since I didn’t reach the Power Target as fast.

On the core, I was able to reach 1230 MHz @ 1.162 V which is 263 MHz higher than the base clock and 250 MHz higher than the standard boost clock. It’s also 15 MHz higher than I got to on the GTX 680. However, I couldn’t increase my vRAM frequency at all when using 1230 MHz core because I would exceed the Power Target. So, I ended up dropping the core to 1215 MHz (same as the GTX 680) to be able to increase the vRAM clocks. With the core at 1215 MHz, I was able to get the vRAM up to 1752 MHz from 1552 MHz, which is 100 MHz higher than I reached on the GTX 680. The GTX 670 vRAM definitely clocked better than the vRAM on the GTX 680, not sure if this has to do with the 2nd Gen Hynix or not, but it’s possible.

EVGA GTX 670 SC @ 1230/1752 MHz with 1.162 V

EVGA GTX 670 SC @ 1230/1752 MHz with 1.162 V

Cooling Performance & Noise

Stock Cooling Performance

Methodology

Cooling performance is measured by running 3DMark11 and recording temperatures shown in GPU-Z. Ambient temperature is measured with a Fluke 52 II thermometer by placing a K-type probe 1″ from the intake fan, and turned out to be 25 °C. The fan profiles used are Auto, 30% (min), 55% (middle), and 80% (max).

Results

The cooling performance of the GTX 670 isn’t near as good as the GTX680. The percentages tested are as follows:

  • GTX 670 – Min = 30%, Mid = 55%, Max = 80%
  • GTX 680 – Min = 30%, Mid = 57%, Max = 85%

The 2-5% fan speed difference in the Mid and Max tests do not explain the 17-19 °C difference in temperature of the two cards. The GTX 670 reaches and exceeds the thermal threshold of 98 °C when set to Min 30%, the clocks did drop dramatically and the card turned to fan to Max 80% for a few seconds in this instance. The GTX 670′s cooling solution is just inferior to that of the GTX 680. However, there’s nothing wrong with running high temps as long as they are below the thermal threshold.

Sound Level

Methodology

The GPU will be on an open bench table with all possible external sources of sound turned off (doors closed, A/C off, ceiling fan off, TV off, and CPU fan turned low as possible). Sound level is measured by placing a Tenma meter 10 cm away from the intake fan and recording the dBA reading with the fan set to 30%, 40%, 50%, 60%, 70%, and 80%. Then, dBA at other distances are estimated by using the formula L2 = L1 – 20 * log10(r2/r1), where L2 = dBA @ desired distance, L1 = dBA @ reference distance, r1 = reference distance, and r2 = desired distance.

Results

NVIDIA says they used the same fan on the GTX 670 as they did on the GTX 680, so the noise of the the two cards should be very similar. There is some motor noise with the GTX 670 sample I have, that eventually goes away when the fan speed reaches ~50%. This can be seen from the “hitch” from 30 -40% or so in the graph below. So, at the lower fan speeds the GTX 670 is actually louder than the GTX 680, but once the GTX 670 reaches 50% it’s actually a little quieter than the GTX 680.

System Power Consumption

Peak system power consumption is measured and recorded during each of the tests using a Kill-a-Watt meter. The system power consumption is very similar between the the GTX 670 and GTX 680, as were the performance numbers. The GTX 670 averages at 267 W and the GTX 680 averages at 274 W, so only a 7 W difference or so between the two in testing. This doesn’t surprise me with the performance of the two cards being so similar and both of them using the GK104 core.

Performance per Dollar

The GTX 670 SC almost runs away with the performance per dollar numbers. It has the best performance for your money in all tests except for the older 3DMark software, 06 and 03. The HD 7950 comes close to the GTX 670 SC in a few of the other tests, but still loses out overall.

Here are the prices used when creating the following performance per dollar numbers:

  • GTX 670 SC: $420
  • HD 7950: $400
  • HD 7970: $480
  • GTX 680: $500
  • GTX 580 Classified: $540

Conclusion

The bottom line as far as performance goes, is that the EVGA GTX 670 SC is a powerhouse that holds its ground even among the single GPU flagship cards from both NVIDIA and AMD. Not only is it great based strictly on performance, it also really shines in performance per dollar since it performs so close to the flagship cards from both camps while having an MSRP lower than both at $420. The reference GTX 670 has an MSRP of $400, and that could save you $20 if you don’t mind overclocking the card yourself; since the GTX 670 can easily overclock to the “SC” clocks offered.

GPU Boost on the GTX 670 SC goes much higher than the GTX 680 sample we reviewed. With final boost clocks on the GTX 670 SC being 1175 MHz, which gives a 91 MHz advantage to the GTX 670 over the GTX 680 out-of-the-box. This higher boost clock definitely had something to do with the card’s stellar performance in the stock testing. The GTX 670 SC overclocked really well too, up to 1230 MHz on the core and 1752 MHz on the vRAM, definitely beating out the GTX 680 on overclockability. I didn’t even have to increase the core offset much either because of its already high boost clock.

The stock cooler on the GTX 670 SC was pretty quiet, but it does have some motor noise at lower fan speeds. There is really only one con to the GTX 670 SC. Unfortunately, the cooling system isn’t very good compared to the GTX 680, with the GTX 670 SC core being ~18 °C hotter when using similar fan speeds. However, the card’s temperatures remain within spec unless manually set very low. Even then, if the card exceeds its thermal threshold, the clocks will decrease and fan will spin up to get the temps back down.

The power consumption of the GTX 670 really isn’t much different than the GTX 680, maybe a very small amount less. Even though the TDP is 25 W lower, the real-world power consumption measurements don’t show that, which is probably due to the higher boost clocks.

Don’t forget that the GTX 670 SC has a much smaller than usual PCB, especially for such a powerful GPU, coming in at 6.8″ long. This, combined with some aftermarket cooling, could results in some very powerful small form factor systems for those who like to pack a punch in a small footprint. If I used a metric for performance per PCB area, then this card would definitely be at the top of the heap, by far.

Overall, the EVGA GTX 670 SC vastly exceeds expectations in performance despite being built on a ridiculously small PCB. It performs so well and at such a good price, I would recommend this GPU over any other card out there, even the GTX 680. Another no-brainer Approved stamp for EVGA!

Click the Approved stamp for an explanation of what it means.

- Matt T. Green (MattNo5ss)

Tags: , , , , , ,

96 Comments:

EarthDog's Avatar
Wow...... what a little beast and $100 less than a 680 and damn close/better in some cases b/c of turbo... heh.

This should force AMD to lower prices on some cards I would imagine!
MattNo5ss's Avatar
Yeah, I'm thinking so too. Mini-beast for a relatively mini-price
Janus67's Avatar
what an adorable PCB with some serious kick to it.

Reminds me of this little guy



Just don't get it in water.
Fever's Avatar
Very nice review.

Might have to change my 580s for 670s instead of 680s!
Moussa93's Avatar
Where can I buy it :0
Link is needed

Amazon has it!! http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007Z3HZIA/...=ATVPDKIKX0DER

Waiting for the Superclocked one ;D

Superclocked link is on!! Should be here sooooooon !
hokiealumnus's Avatar
EVGA has them on their site:

Vanilla GTX670
GTX670 Superclocked
GTX670 FTW

There is also a Galaxy card @ TigerDirect: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...312&CatId=7387

They aren't up at Newegg yet that I can find.
Brolloks's Avatar
Free two day shipping, cant beat that, in for one
Moussa93's Avatar
Mhhhhh? don't get it :s

waiting for that 670 SC to be on Amazon... Haven't slept yet and it's 10 AM :/


Moussa93's Avatar
Need it on Amazon so I can get it tomorrow
Janus67's Avatar
why spend more on a superclocked? it looks like they have the same VRM sections as the vanilla and a paltry overclock? Save yourself $20 (or $40 from the FTW, depending on if it has a beefier VRM section).
xander89's Avatar
anyone know when this will be out in the UK? wana see the 7970 prices drop! hopfully this will push the 7970's to below 300
Moussa93's Avatar
Looks like the FTW isn't coming now :/
Galgotha's Avatar

Thinking the same thing in product specs can't tell. But it does make me question is the 680 worth the extra 100-120 bucks.

Still will wait for Asus or MSI to come with the better cooling models to decided.
Moussa93's Avatar
The OverClocked version of Galaxy is sexy as hell: http://www.galaxytechus.com/usa/productview.aspx?id=182

Amazon Superclocked is on!!! http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007Z3HZGM/...=ATVPDKIKX0DER

Now this one or the Galaxy version? Which one would you choose?
Bobnova's Avatar
The galaxy is a non-reference board, there are pros and cons.

Pros: Way, way, way better cooling. May OC further, may not.
Cons: Probably no software voltage control. I have no idea what Galaxy's warranty support is like.
Moussa93's Avatar
I don't really plan to overclock?
Bobnova's Avatar
Get the cheapest card from a name brand you can find then.
Skip the OC editions, skip the more expensive non-reference editions.
Moussa93's Avatar
Now I'll get the Gtx 670 SuperClocked from EVGA... If I'll do 2 days shipping and If I wake up and see the Galaxy one online, I'll return the EVGA and get it. Can't stay here, too sleepy

Night
lordkosc's Avatar
sucks this EVGA card runs so much warmer with that stock cooler, I had to go with a different maker, but still got a GTX 670.

one hell of a card Nvidia!
fall's Avatar
Finally a baby PCB for baby cases!
hokiealumnus's Avatar
Yes, but it's a baby PCB with big kid performance. These results are very impressive.
MattNo5ss's Avatar
Yeah, stock cooling wasn't very good, but temps stayed under the thermal threshold unless manually set really low.

I love the little PCB as well. Maybe use an Arctic Cooling Accelero Mono Plus to keep the footprint small and have better cooling
xander89's Avatar
ive just realised how silly this card is going to look when it has a waterblock on it :P so weeny! mATX people are gona love it though
hokiealumnus's Avatar
Gotta watch those in SFF cases though...too little airflow and the build will become a hotbox. I'm thinking SFF liquid is the best way to go. Anyone seen Miah recently? Something like that would be right up his alley.
Robert17's Avatar
Great review. I've also become fond of EVGA over time.
Frakk's Avatar
The GTX 670 looks like the GTX 680 on older less refined drivers, there is very little between them, you probably would not notice any difference other than having a much lighter wallet.

In performance for your money the 7970 is out with its current prices (tho i'm sure they will come down)

And the GTX 680? that's just a bad joke now.
ivanlabrie's Avatar
Gotta love the small pcb, but me wants voltage control xD
Will probably wait a month or two...Need a monitor first.
MattNo5ss's Avatar
You can control it somewhat, but cannot go higher than 1.175v. Personally, I had to lower it to get more clocks because the higher voltage made the card reach the power target too fast and the card could run the higher clocks at lower voltage.
Reaver22's Avatar
Just ordered my EVGA 670 superclock now I can give my brother his video card back.
MattNo5ss's Avatar
Since the GTX 670 and GTX 680 are identical except for one disabled SMX unit, I tried to SLI them. It didn't work, but I'm not sure if that's only because there aren't any drivers that support both the GTX 670 and GTX 680. NVIDIA will probably not allow it either way, but maybe a driver hack will be easier since the cards are so similar? Driver hacking and what it takes to do it are over my head.

I'm going to try it again when a new driver version is released that supports both cards.

Based on my testing and other reviews, you made a great choice
Reaver22's Avatar
I was just glad that this launch day was this week instead of later on cause my brother would be home wanting his card back and I would be stuck having to bite the bullet and order something I didnt want.
Moussa93's Avatar
So Gtx Superclocked or the Galaxy GC ?

I bought the SuperClocked but I'm thinking about returning it because of the heat issue?
MattNo5ss's Avatar
Just because it's hotter than the GTX 680, doesn't mean there's a heat issue. I had it overclocked to 1230/3505 MHz without problems.
Moussa93's Avatar
So should I stick in it?
MattNo5ss's Avatar
Either one should do fine. The Galaxy should have lower core temps. It's a full-size PCB with more power phases and 8-pin + 6-pin power connectors. So if it has voltage control higher than 1.175v. then it's possible it'll OC better. Without higher voltage control, that extra potential for power is kinda useless.
Moussa93's Avatar
Well, since I don't really overclock... I guess I'll stick to the EVGA version
diaz's Avatar
It will be perfect for water block.. small sized waterblock FTW.
xander89's Avatar
hehe stunted graphics card :P
fall's Avatar
Drank too much coffee obviously
zitnik's Avatar
Great review, Matt.

Like it said in the review, no point in really getting a 680 when you can by the 670 SC for $420, OC it a bit more and be faster than a 680. The 670 SC is right on the heels of the 680.
Janus67's Avatar
Or spend $400 on the card, spend $20 on some good beer, and overclock it to be a 680 seeing how they are exactly the same minus a small factory overclock that any card can do.
super2007's Avatar
So 670 has 8-pin + 6-pin power connectors and it comes with those power adapters. My psu has 2 x 6-pin power connectors. I thought you shouldnt power the GPU using those power adapters
xander89's Avatar
Goddammit want the prices of the 7970s to drop right nowwww. Lol. I'm kinda against getting the 670 for aesthetic reasons. If I did get it I would have to wait to WC it, also it would look silly on a normal mobo in a corsair 800D. Lol.
Moussa93's Avatar
Woow... Well, I'm receiving the Gtx 670SC by EVGA this morning (It's 2AM) but I won't open it... Will return it easily with Amazon Will get the GTX 670 by Asus finally ^^

When do you guys think that it'll be available?
EarthDog's Avatar
Lol, I can't believe you are returning for those reasons!
Moussa93's Avatar
I heard that the Asus is waaay better? It's not true?
I mean, I'll keep the one that performs better
xander89's Avatar
They will be pretty similar. Both Asus and EVGA are good brands. You cant really go wrong with either. Both will have the same OC headroom, cooling etc.
Moussa93's Avatar
Mhhh great I'll keep mine then... Waiting for the fedex driver
xander89's Avatar
mate its up to you in the end, Both are the same card with a different label. I wouldn't worry too much.

Maybe some people will disagree? Where did you hear that Asus was so much better than EVGA
Frakk's Avatar
I would agree with that, as far as i know they are different in that they are made by different people so some of the bits soldered on the PCB might vary, but in that both makers are of the same standard.

And they probably all use the same component suppliers anyway, so yeah there pretty much clones of eachother.
Moussa93's Avatar
Alright, got it
Thanks for your help
EarthDog's Avatar
Does the red civic perform better than a blue civic? That all it is here (assuming they both use the reference board which is the small one), a sticker is the difference, or possibly the cooler.

But none 'perform better' than the other.
hokiealumnus's Avatar
Fun pic from OCUK. Looks like they have PLENTY of 670s in stock.

EarthDog's Avatar
Yeah... saw that yesterday... LOTS o cads!
Frakk's Avatar
How do they do that? they had the GTX 680 in by the skip load (and still do) while every other was / is struggling to get them in.
MattNo5ss's Avatar
Nah, the GTX670 uses 2x 6-pin PCIe power connectors unless you are getting a non-reference version, then they might be using different power connectors.
hokiealumnus's Avatar
Know your supplier well and pay a metric ton of money to retain all that stock.
Brolloks's Avatar
I would like to see how the 670 at max OC do against the 680 at max OC, that will tell how close they really are, it really a comparison to say the OC 670 "nearly" beat a stock 680 is it now?
MattNo5ss's Avatar
It sucks that you can't run what clocks you want for clock-for-clock tests because the boost clock varies throughout, and how high the boost goes and when it changes isn't the same during multiple runs of the same test either. I can do "same OC" tests if you want, max OC tests wouldn't be a good choice for comparison if one can run higher clocks than the other in some tests.
Archer0915's Avatar
I just think they are screwed up. The card is not much slower than the top of the line and priced like a top of the line card. To me $400 is overpriced. Not that the performance is not there but marketing this is a nightmare. nVidia should down clock it rebadge it a 665 and be done with it. I think they are hurting themselves with this.
Frakk's Avatar
It is overpriced, there all overpriced from both colours.

But its still $100 cheaper than its slightly bigger brother.

The whole lot needs to come down in price, its just ridiculous especially in this climate.
Brolloks's Avatar
Then people should not say the 670 is the same as the 680, it is not, OC both, you cant OC one and let the other run at stock, same applies to any component.
If you game yes, I'd say get the 670 but for benching the 680 will stomp the 670
Frakk's Avatar
Playing games is what its for, most people are more interested in what sort of actual performance there getting for there money than they are throwing around useless numbers in some game of one upmanship
clubber_lang's Avatar
WOW!!.....That is one hell of a card for $400.00!! Thank you for the test!
Janus67's Avatar
I love gaming as much as the next guy, but don't try to say that to a competitive benchmarker as it is as much of a game as anything.
hokiealumnus's Avatar
To quote xander89, "++++++++".

Different strokes for different folks. There is no need to try to imply one is more worthy than the other Frakk. Many people (myself included) find benchmark scores to be far from useless. I don't game. Can't, don't have time, have no real desire any more...but I sure do benchmark! That's the game I choose. That it's not the same game as your preference doesn't invalidate it.
MattNo5ss's Avatar
That's why I didn't compare an OC'd card to a stock card. I ran both at stock, and both boost to whatever they boost to.

What I'm saying is that it is IMPOSSIBLE to get a clock-for-clock comparison between 600 series cards because of the boost clock, so any comparison we do will not be ideal. Even if I would OC both cards so their max boost is the same clock, that would still not be a clock for clock comparison since boost clock isn't consistent throughout testing.
Bobnova's Avatar
Can't you set static clocks if you short the current sense resistors?
EarthDog's Avatar
You could have it throttle via temp or power threshold, but thats certainly not worth it..

I agree you tested at stock, we cant really control boost easily so it is what it is.
super2007's Avatar
Ya i am thinking about getting the gigabyte version which uses 8 and 6 power connectors. Would it be ok for me to use those power connections adapters that come with my card? since my psu has 2x 6 pin
MattNo5ss's Avatar
Even when they throttle due to temps, the clocks aren't consistent

Nice! Don't forget to take the film off the light gray brushed aluminum and the fan hub

Nothing is wrong with using adapters, you'll be fine.
Moussa93's Avatar
Oops...

*Opens the computer*
lordkosc's Avatar
Mine is coming on 5/16 from Amazon, damn backorder , but the use of adapters for power should be no issue. The windforce setup sold me on this card, from reviews I've read its between 10c to 20c temperature difference from the OEMs.

I'll be going from a GTX460 to a GTX670 , anyone know what performance increase I can expect? 3x better?


None of the reviews even mention the GTX460 anymore, which I guess makes sense as its 2 years old.
ivanlabrie's Avatar
Consider 2 460s scale like a single 580...and pit that against a 670/80.
lordkosc's Avatar
Thats what I wanted to hear!
xander89's Avatar
I do get where you are coming from hokie.I used to bench but not so much anymore. But i do agree for the majority of people its real game performance that matters.

But also with benching i tend to find it wont be about how high the numbers are for your overall rig, but how high they are for that specific setup. Sure a 680 will stomp a 670 in benches, but a 690 will stomp a 680 ( all obvious i know)

Personally im not too bothered about it getting stomped in benches, because if i was to bench i wouldn't bench a 670 against a 680. I would bench a 670 against other 670 so i suppose its all relative! It only matters really what you are benching when it gets to the top end where people are going for the highest numbers possible.
vdgamer's Avatar
+1 Brolloks
oc'd 570 was reaching stock 580 performance so it's only natural that the same is true for 670/680, cards should be compared stock vs stock and oc'd vs oc'd in order to see real difference
EarthDog's Avatar
Read on Vdgamer. It was tested at stock speed. It was the BOOST clocks that ramped up higher than advertised (which happens on the 680 too). Otherwise, it was stock clocks.
vdgamer's Avatar
I did read the whole article, maybe i misunderstand but 670SC was turbo boosting higher because its clocked higher than regular 670, thats why it was so close to 680, but now that i think about it 570SC wasnt that close to 580 just because it was overclocked a little from factory, so yes i have to admit 670 really is something else, i do think that reference design is a bit weird, but ill be waiting for twin frozr or lightning version anyway so hopefully the cooling and power plug placement on those will be better
MattNo5ss's Avatar
I'll try to clear up the clocks since the boost clocks on these new cards makes things complicated...

No code has to be inserted here.

Based on manufacturer specs, the GTX680 is clocked higher in both its base clock and its boost clock. However, in my testing both cards boosted higher than spec, and the GTX670 SC boosted higher than the GTX680 overall.
ivanlabrie's Avatar
Seeing how much impact clocks have on this cards, as opposed to actual cuda cores...do you guys expect the gtx660ti to perform this good? If it does it'll be aggressively priced at 300msrp...
MattNo5ss's Avatar
Here's a few quick game benchmarks with the max boost of the cards as close as I could get them. Remember, this is just the max clock that the cards reached during testing, it doesn't tell how long each card was at a particular boost clock.

Also, this is using an i7 3770K @ 4.0 GHz.

109879
Moussa93's Avatar
That's close... Too close for a ~$100 difference
xander89's Avatar
Bloody hell it's packs a punch for sucha pocket sized gfx card! Do the 680 blocks fit on the 670's? If they do I might have to scrap the 7970 and go with the 670 instead based on the price. Unless amd drop the price of their 7970 soon. I'm just a bit wary because of now silly small it's going to look!
Janus67's Avatar
Most likely not, at least not if it is a full cover as the reference PCB is different in size
trueplaya4ever8's Avatar
I want a 4GB one. I need more power for my surround/eyefinity setup!

I still wanna see waterblocks on these!
MattNo5ss's Avatar
EVGA "Mini-Recall" on GTX 670 SC

Source
Janus67's Avatar
nice customer support/service there.
Moussa93's Avatar
What's wrong with the Gtx 670 Sc :0 ?
MattNo5ss's Avatar
Not sure. EVGA didn't say exactly what's causing problems in that batch of cards.

Great support for sure. Cross ship and an upgrade
Moussa93's Avatar
I have the 670Sc but no problem so far
fivex1950's Avatar
I have one of the GTX 670 SC's and it lives up to ALL the hype. They did have a problem with the first lot (P3), but I have a (P4) and this thing is a Rocketship. I have since bought one more and will SLI them when my new mother board gets here. "Look out GTX 690, I'm coming to get ya".

My suggestion to anyone thinking about buying one of these is, STOP THINKING and buy one. You can't go wrong and will not be disappointed.
LOOK at all tests and comparisons they have run on this Monster. What more can you ask for?
ToRpEdA667's Avatar
ohhh i think iv fallen in love. I need to get some free cash to upgrade mine
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