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BFG GTX 275 (896 MB)

Best Of The Best: High-End Graphics Card Roundup
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To see the pictures, please click on the photo of the test card below to access our photo gallery.

The BFG GeForce GTX 275 represents great price per performance value in the high-end segment. Even without overclocking, the GeForce GTX 275 can keep up with the more expensive GeForce GTX 280 while gaming. Those who want more performance than the GeForce GTX 260 is able to deliver, while spending less than the cost of a GeForce GTX 280, would do very well with the 275 (we covered the launch of this board right here).

The GeForce GTX 260 owes much of its popularity to a steep price decline, but you always have to check to see if a particular unit includes 192 or 216 stream processors, since some boards include 55 nm chips, while others use 65 nm GPUs instead. If you buy a GeForce GTX 275, no such checks are needed, since it's basically a tweaked GeForce GTX 280 with 896 MB RAM (and a narrower memory bus) instead of 1 GB, but with 240 complete stream processors and higher clock rates. It uses a 55 nm chip, and even the reference fan is nice and quiet.

The graphics chip supports DirectX 10, PhysX, and CUDA. The circuit board is 10.6" (27 cm) long, and BFG overclocks this model slightly. Reference clock rates on the GTX 275 are 633 MHz for the GPU, 1,404 MHz for the shader, and 1,134 MHz on the GDDR3 memory (for an effective rate of 2,268 MHz). BFG boosts these numbers to 648 MHz, 1,440 MHz, and 2 x 1,152 MHz, for a roughly 1.8% boost in overall performance.

The fan profile extends all the way to 92 degrees Celsius. Our test sample ran at 44.2 decibels, measured at a distance of one meter (dB(A)), which was quieter than a GeForce GTX 280 at 45.5 dB(A). In 2D mode, it's barely audible at 36.8 dB(A).

Despite its use of 55 nm technology, the GeForce GTX 275 doesn't use less power than a GeForce GTX 280 because of its higher clock frequency. The complete test system with a BFG card installed consumed 355 W from the wall socket, while the same setup with the GeForce GTX 280 drew 347 W and a GeForce GTX 260 with 216 stream processors consumed 295 W. The GeForce GTX 275 requires two six-pin PCI Express (PCIe) power connectors that plug into the rear edge of the card. In 2D desktop mode, the card clocks to 300/100 MHz (GPU/RAM).

BFG's bundle is quite minimalist. Two dual-link DVI ports are provided, and there is a power-splitter cable, a driver CD, and a discount coupon for games bundled with the card. There is no HDMI adapter, nor is there an S/PDIF cable included, either.

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