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Sound Level And Temperature: Overclocked

Seven GeForce GTX 670 Cards, Benchmarked And Reviewed
By

Normalizing Clocks To Test Cooling Performance

We set all cards to employ a 1059 MHz GPU clock (which the reference board handles at a load temp under 80°C) and a 1527 MHz memory frequency. All of the boards ran at that combination of clock rates without crashing throughout testing.

A look at the thermal and sound level measurements at this clock rate make it clear that our critiques on Zotac's card were premature. All of the other cards have to work hard in this environment, while the AMP! Edition board gets to relax a bit.

To our surprise, Nvidia's reference card can keep up with the pack. It even pulls in front of two three-slot competitors. The high bar of 78°C is no cause for concern; this is an intentional stress test.

Cooling Them Down to 70°C

Our next comparison involves measuring acoustics when we dial in a fan speed able to hold each card at 70°C, a temperature chosen for its long-term attractiveness in heavy workloads like Bitcoin mining. We're using each card at its factory clock rate because overclocked reference cards simply cannot hold 70°C.

Zotac's AMP! Edition board shines here. It can even spin slower to maintain 70°C at this lower clock rate. But the real winners are Asus and Gigabyte. Meanwhile, our Galaxy/KFA² board again annoys us with its high-frequency chirping.

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Top Comments
  • 14 Hide
    LonelyMan , June 29, 2012 4:31 AM
    Where is the msi gtx 670 power edition?
  • 10 Hide
    FormatC , June 29, 2012 4:53 AM
    Quote:
    Where is the msi gtx 670 power edition?
    The roundup was published in German on May 22, 2012:
    http://www.tomshardware.de/Nvidia-Geforce-GTX-670-Roundup,testberichte-241027.html

    Sorry, but at this time (and 4 weeks later too) MSI was unable to deliver one of this cards. When MSI starts so late with this cards, then this is not our fault. ;) 
Other Comments
  • 14 Hide
    LonelyMan , June 29, 2012 4:31 AM
    Where is the msi gtx 670 power edition?
  • 0 Hide
    zerokontrol , June 29, 2012 4:34 AM
    Typo on conclusion. "not to loud on loud." That would be the Gigabyte card.
  • 3 Hide
    user 18 , June 29, 2012 4:50 AM
    On the Gigabyte card's page:

    Quote:
    During the course of our testing, we effortlessly set this card to run at 1059 MHz, so we're not sure why Gigabyte held back so much. During testing, we overclocked this card to 1059 MHz quite easily, so we are somewhat surprised by the conservative factory overclock.


    This seems to be saying the same thing twice. Error, or am I missing something?
  • 2 Hide
    hellfire24 , June 29, 2012 4:50 AM
    hey man,where's MSi Twinfrozer IV OC edition?
  • 10 Hide
    FormatC , June 29, 2012 4:53 AM
    Quote:
    Where is the msi gtx 670 power edition?
    The roundup was published in German on May 22, 2012:
    http://www.tomshardware.de/Nvidia-Geforce-GTX-670-Roundup,testberichte-241027.html

    Sorry, but at this time (and 4 weeks later too) MSI was unable to deliver one of this cards. When MSI starts so late with this cards, then this is not our fault. ;) 
  • 7 Hide
    monkeymonk , June 29, 2012 4:57 AM
    Please do this with the 680s
  • 4 Hide
    user 18 , June 29, 2012 4:59 AM
    Also, the second chart on the 'Sound Level and Temperature: Overclocked' page is missing the 'Mhz' label on the speed for the Palit card. It should read '1059 Mhz', while it reads only '1059'.
  • 2 Hide
    LonelyMan , June 29, 2012 5:10 AM
    I'd like to see one for the 680s too, in which the 680 classified and lightning will be present, including others. :D 
  • 5 Hide
    hellfire24 , June 29, 2012 5:14 AM
    please also do battlefield 3 benchmark!
  • 1 Hide
    erunion , June 29, 2012 5:24 AM
    I've been waiting for this review.
  • 0 Hide
    xxplosiv88 , June 29, 2012 5:44 AM
    So glad I bought the ASUS GTX 670 2 weeks ago now :) 
  • 3 Hide
    FormatC , June 29, 2012 5:56 AM
    Quote:
    please also do battlefield 3 benchmark!
    All cards were tested for our charts too (with BF3). Please wait a little bit, our team will update this results soon. :) 

  • -3 Hide
    FormatC , June 29, 2012 6:09 AM
    My phone shows me the right content :D  iPhone? :D 
  • 1 Hide
    fantastik250 , June 29, 2012 6:09 AM
    Love the video's on the graphic card sounds.

    I am wondering, if it would make any difference for sound if the video card's fans were pointing down, instead of pointing at the side. Or if the fan's sound profile, would change because of the orientation of the card.
  • 0 Hide
    mayankleoboy1 , June 29, 2012 6:37 AM
    there have been some reports and rumours that retail 670/680 are achieving much less overclock/boost than the review samples.

    can you take a look at that?
  • -6 Hide
    manwell999 , June 29, 2012 7:30 AM
    "Rather, we suspect a driver problem. There doesn't seem to be any other explanation."

    Tired of this kind of selection bias where any aspect that is subpar is dismissed as a driver issue. Another explanation is the spec sheets are misleading or the conclusions you have about what to expect from extra hardware capacity are wrong.
  • 1 Hide
    keigo_kanzaki , June 29, 2012 8:13 AM
    I would like to read GTX 680 comparison too, and using PCIE 3.0 spec :) 
  • 6 Hide
    hellfire24 , June 29, 2012 10:21 AM
    Quote:
    All cards were tested for our charts too (with BF3). Please wait a little bit, our team will update this results soon. :) 


    thanks man,team toms FTW!
  • 4 Hide
    Anonymous , June 29, 2012 11:07 AM
    Hmm... no EVGA ? :( 
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