Different Is Good
Nvidia's GeForce GTX 580 is currently the fastest graphics card based on a single GPU. If you want more performance than what it can do, you need to look at a dual-GPU board or a pair of cards in CrossFire or SLI (and if you don't know what the card is capable of, check out GeForce GTX 580 And GF110: The Way Nvidia Meant It To Be Played).
As we've come to expect, there are board partners who deviate from the company's specification in one way or another in the interest of differentiation. Some employ overclocks straight from the factory, others implement custom cooling solutions, and nearly all try to offer unique features to set their products apart from the pack.
Today we're rounding up four premium GeForce GTX 580s, all of which arrive overclocked, and comparing them to a reference GeForce GTX 580. Our contenders include Gigabyte’s GeForce GTX 580 Super Overclock, MSI’s N580GTX Twin Frozr II/OC, Calibre's X580 Captain, and Zotac’s GeForce GTX 580 AMP²! Edition.
|ReferenceGeForce GTX 580||Gigabyte GeForce GTX 580 Super Overclock||MSI N580GTX Twin Frozr II/OC||CalibreX580 Captain||Zotac GeForce GTX 580 AMP²!|
|GraphicsClock||772 MHz||855 MHz||800 MHz||822 MHz||815 MHz|
|ShaderClock||1544 MHz||1710 MHz||1600 MHz||1644 MHz||1630 MHz|
|MemoryClock||1002 MHz||1025 MHz||1024 MHz||1008 MHz||1025 MHz|
|GDDR5Memory||1536 MB||1536 MB||1536 MB||1536 MB(3072 MB version expected soon)||3072 MB|
|Cooler||Reference||Windforce 3x||Twin Frozr II||Reference||Zalman VF3000|
|Size||11" x 5" x 1.8"||11.4" x 5.7" x 1.8"||11" x 5.2" x 1.8"||11" x 5" x 1.8"||11" x 5.3" x 2.5"|
|Connectors||2 x DL-DVI, 1 x mini-HDMI||2 x DL-DVI, 1 x mini-HDMI||2 x DL-DVI, 1 x mini-HDMI||2 x DL-DVI, 3x MiniDP||2 x DL-DVI, 1 x mini-HDMI|
|Price||$480 (Newegg)||$535 (Newegg)||$499 (Newegg)||$649 MSRP(1536 MB version)||$549 (Newegg)|
As mentioned, all of these cards sport factory overclocks of varying degrees. But there are some unique features in the bunch, too. Let’s take a closer look at each unique spin on Nvidia’s design.