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On The Bench: EVGA GeForce GTX 460 FTW

On The Bench: EVGA GeForce GTX 460 FTW
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EVGA is currently selling the fastest GeForce GTX 460 available, and yet this board didn't make it into our Radeon HD 6800 coverage, just to keep things fair. Now we're back with a look at how an overclocked 460 compares to the GTX 470 and Radeon HD 6870.

When the Radeon HD 6800-series cards were launched in October, Nvidia representatives wanted us to include EVGA's GTX460 FTW in the benchmarks to represent the Radeon HD 6870’s competitive landscape. We didn’t go that route because the idea of benchmarking a GeForce GTX 460 with the highest available factory overclock against AMD's standard Radeon HD 6870 didn’t sit very well with us. Although EVGA’s highly overclocked GeForce GTX 460 is a perfectly valid product, it’s not a reference design, and is only offered by one company, while many manufacturers produce cards based on the Radeon HD 6870 reference standard.

With the Radeon HD 6800-series launch behind us, though, we’re certainly interested in seeing what EVGA’s top-of-the-line GeForce GTX 460 can do, and how it compares to its competition, Radeon- and GeForce-based cards alike.

From what we’ve seen, EVGA’s card boasts the highest factory overclock of any GeForce GTX 460 1 GB available to date. With 850/1700 MHz core/shader speeds and a 1000 MHz GDDR5 memory clock, this card has a significant 175/350 MHz core/shader and 100 MHz memory advantage over Nvidia's original design.

This overclock looks especially impressive when you compare stats against the reference GeForce GTX 470. EVGA’s GTX460 FTW has the potential to perform about 5% more shader operations per second than a reference GeForce GTX 470, and practical memory bandwidth is brought within 5% of the GF100-equipped card. The overclocked core and shader speeds push raster performance into an even higher realm. This suggests that EVGA’s factory overclocked GeForce GTX 460 should perform in the neighborhood of the GeForce GTX 470, and maybe even beat it in some situations. It’s no wonder Nvidia partially crippled the GF104 GPU and kept its reference clocks lower than they probably could have been—the company didn’t want its mid-range offering showing up in high-end products.

If you were expecting a magnum-force custom-cooling solution, prepare to be surprised. EVGA’s wunderkard humbly makes use of the reference cooler, tastefully arrayed in EVGA colors.

As far as we can tell from the back of the board, the PCB is reference fare, too. The only hardware upgrade that EVGA mentions in its marketing materials is an upgraded MOSFET heat sink.

This card requires two PCIe power connectors, just like every other GeForce GTX 460 we’ve seen.

The card’s outputs are also standard-issue GeForce GTX 460 equipment: two dual-link DVI outputs, complemented by a single mini-HDMI output.

The bundle includes a DVI-to-VGA adapter, two Molex-to-PCIe power-connector adapters, a user guide, a driver CD, and what appears to be a bumper sticker.

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  • 1 Hide
    fstrthnu , December 23, 2010 4:09 AM
    Heh, "FTW". Still, EVGA's done a pretty impressive job here. Still a standby till the Geforce GTX 560 comes, but this is pretty darn good heading into winter
  • 2 Hide
    macer1 , December 23, 2010 4:12 AM
    Why not use the 10.12 beta drivers from AMD ?

    The current test used a 10.10 Beta driver which was more problematic then the 10.9 AMD drivers. Makes no sense to me.
  • 2 Hide
    touchdowntexas13 , December 23, 2010 4:15 AM
    Typically I think factory overclocked cards are a waste of cash, but this seems like a pretty good value. I am very happy with my GTX 470, but if I could do it over I would of snatched up that GTX 460! The 470 is just so loud and hot. But it's whatever. The 460 didn't come out until 3 months after I bought the 470.
  • -4 Hide
    dEAne , December 23, 2010 4:31 AM
    If I to choose I will recommend the EVGA’s GTX460 FTW.
  • 0 Hide
    Tamz_msc , December 23, 2010 4:38 AM
    Quote:
    It'd be nice if Nvidia released a card sporting GF104 GPU and all eight streaming multiprocessors enabled, just to see what it can do.

    Bombard the the HD 6950? Maybe at a lesser price? Keeping my fingers crossed for the GTX 560 :D 
  • -2 Hide
    duk3 , December 23, 2010 4:59 AM
    GTX550= GTX460maxcore @ 850mhz :o 
  • 1 Hide
    IzzyCraft , December 23, 2010 5:03 AM
    macer1Why not use the 10.12 beta drivers from AMD ? The current test used a 10.10 Beta driver which was more problematic then the 10.9 AMD drivers. Makes no sense to me.

    Because articles take time to write esp when you need to benchmark things.
  • -2 Hide
    rohitbaran , December 23, 2010 5:13 AM
    Well, this doesn't sound too good for AMD. A fully enable GTX 460, which will probably launch as GX560 will probably come close enough, if not equal to the Radeon 6950.
  • 2 Hide
    Randomacts , December 23, 2010 5:16 AM
    Really?? A bumper sticker??? hahah... wow..
  • 2 Hide
    IzzyCraft , December 23, 2010 5:21 AM
    RandomactsReally?? A bumper sticker??? hahah... wow..

    They didn't have enough fun tricking me into putting lame stickers on my expensive case when i was young so now they want me to put lame stickers on my car.
  • 3 Hide
    joytech22 , December 23, 2010 5:34 AM
    I own 2 GTX470's and if i had seen this GTX460 FTW edition available i would have snatched them up in a heartbeat!

    My 470's are a force to be reckoned with but they're also incredibly loud on hot days (Which i can do Nothing about, even with Air conditioning) and according to these power figures suck up so much more power on average.

    I still think i made the right choice though, it isn't like i notice the sound when i'm playing games anyway.

    And WHY don't ratings work?! Seriously someone has to know..
  • 0 Hide
    fstrthnu , December 23, 2010 6:08 AM
    joytech22I own 2 GTX470's and if i had seen this GTX460 FTW edition available i would have snatched them up in a heartbeat!My 470's are a force to be reckoned with but they're also incredibly loud on hot days (Which i can do Nothing about, even with Air conditioning) and according to these power figures suck up so much more power on average.I still think i made the right choice though, it isn't like i notice the sound when i'm playing games anyway.And WHY don't ratings work?! Seriously someone has to know..

    Lolz your post almost exactly replicated touchdowntexas13's post right above.
    But anyways, that's always the punishment for early adoption. Of course, these cards here are already close to the end of their lifecycle (when the Geforce 500 series is fully unveiled)
  • -1 Hide
    iamtheking123 , December 23, 2010 6:22 AM
    Does anyone really have so much trouble saying "hmmm look at the stock card overclocked benchmarks and that's what the 460 FTW looks like" that it justifies 10 pages just for this?
  • 4 Hide
    cangelini , December 23, 2010 6:23 AM
    joytech22I own 2 GTX470's and if i had seen this GTX460 FTW edition available i would have snatched them up in a heartbeat!My 470's are a force to be reckoned with but they're also incredibly loud on hot days (Which i can do Nothing about, even with Air conditioning) and according to these power figures suck up so much more power on average.I still think i made the right choice though, it isn't like i notice the sound when i'm playing games anyway.And WHY don't ratings work?! Seriously someone has to know..


    Someone in development broke the ratings system. A bug report has been filed, and we're all eagerly awaiting the fix so that, once again, you guys can vote them up or down!
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , December 23, 2010 6:29 AM
    Thanks for the review, but why weren't the graps sorted from highest to lowest and highlight the card being reviewed?
  • 1 Hide
    joytech22 , December 23, 2010 6:52 AM
    cangeliniSomeone in development broke the ratings system.


    Haha! oh well stuff happens, thanks for the explanation.
  • 0 Hide
    nevertell , December 23, 2010 7:41 AM
    There is no point in buying these, you can overclock and overvolt pretty much any videocard, and you can get a better performing cooler for a lot less.
  • 0 Hide
    bullcat , December 23, 2010 7:47 AM
    You should have mentioned that almost all of the advantage over the Radeons came from the Civ 5 map benchmark.
  • 0 Hide
    cphorn15 , December 23, 2010 8:59 AM
    BullCatYou should have mentioned that almost all of the advantage over the Radeons came from the Civ 5 map benchmark.


    But the fps are so high that the difference is negligible. Most users playing the game run moniters at 60Hz. The real kicker would be to throw in Eyefinity and 3D Vision/Surround and see the impact of that. Still most users don't use those technologies either.
  • 2 Hide
    hardcore_gamer , December 23, 2010 8:59 AM
    6870 draws only half the power of a GTX470 ! :o 
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