Date: Thursday , May 10, 2012
The first next generation GPU to be released by NVIDIA was the high-end GeForce GTX 680 on March 22nd, 2012, codenamed "Kepler." This $499 GTX 680 represented the first in the line of Kepler GPUs and served as NVIDIA's new flagship single-GPU video card. Our testing, over and over has proven that the GeForce GTX 680 competes well with AMD's current offerings, providing a greater value and a greater performer. NVIDIA's latest Kepler release was just one week ago. The GeForce GTX 690 was released, which contains two GeForce GTX 680 GPUs on board for SLI action on a single video card. This $999 video card produced the best performance we've ever seen in a single-card package.
Today, NVIDIA continues its release of Kepler GPUs by announcing the GeForce GTX 670. The GeForce GTX 670, as the name suggests, is a step down in the product stack from the GeForce GTX 680. This means it will be less expensive, $399 to be exact, and it will be less of a performer than the GTX 680. What you are going to find in our evaluation is that even though the GTX 670 is $100 less than a GeForce GTX 680, it still packs in a lot of performance. We find that the GTX 670 provides a better value than the AMD video card at the same price point.
Think of the GeForce GTX 670 as a down-clocked GTX 680 with less shader processing units, because that is essentially all it is. There are 1344 CUDA Cores on board the GTX 670, versus the 1536 on the GTX 680. The stock baseclock on the GTX 670 has been reduced to 915MHz, versus 1006MHz on the GTX 680. The boostclock however will mostly kept our GPU at 980MHz under normal gaming loads. It can in fact go even higher. As we were gaming, we also saw it pushing above 1GHz many times. The memory configuration is made up of 2GB of GDDR5 on a 256-bit bus with 6GHz memory. That means the GTX 670 memory configuration is exactly the same as the GTX 680. With the reduction in CUDA Cores, and clock speed, the TDP of the video card is at a low 170W and only two 6-pin connectors are required.
Every single feature supported in the GTX 680 is supported here. GPU Boost is working, FXAA, TXAA, same manufacturing process, same SMX architecture, all of it is the same. The only difference is the reduction of CUDA cores and clock speed. As you are going to see below, the PCB length has been greatly reduced however.
Look closely at the video card above. It may, at first glance, look like the power connectors are in the middle of the printed circuit board, but in fact these are not. The power connectors are in fact at the end of the PCB. What extends beyond the PCB is simply, the fan. The actual PCB length on this video card is under 7 inches. The entire board length itself, with the fan unit, is 9.25 inches in length. This is the shortest PCB we've ever seen at $399. Beyond the size, only two 6-pin power connectors are required, and the GTX 670 does support SLI. At the output end of the card you will find two dual-link DVI ports, an HDMI port, and a Displayport.