GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC Video Card Review
GALAXY's new GeForce GTX 670 GC features a dual fan setup on a custom built PCB. GALAXY also tuned 670 GC with a strong 1006MHz overclock. We see how this compares to other video cards in its price range including a Radeon HD 7950 and GeForce GTX 580. Then we put the GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 head to head with a GeForce GTX 680.
GALAXY has now become one of the more familiar names in the graphics card industry. Established in 1994, GALAXY itself has the main focus of manufacturing high quality, NVIDIA based video cards. The company also tries to bring more innovation to its hardware, and was the first NVIDIA manufacturer to bring NV Surround support NVIDIA GPUs that lacked the feature with up to 5 displays off a single video card. GALAXY has been making a big statement with its fully customized video cards thus far in the Kepler series shunning NVIDIA built "reference cards" when it can.
On our review today covers the new GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC video card.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670
NVIDIA released its new GeForce GTX 670, code-named "Kepler" on May 10th, 2012. The Kepler "GK104" architecture is much like its Fermi predecessor. The GeForce GTX 670 has 7 SMX clusters which each have 192 CUDA cores inside and a control logic which has a reduced size. The GPU is built using 28nm technology. The GeForce GTX 670 is also built on a much smaller PCB than we have grown accustomed to.
The GeForce GTX 670 itself is comprised of 3.54 billion transistors packed into 1344 CUDA cores with a default clock speed of 915MHz. The GeForce GTX 670 also has a boost clock which it will increase to during graphically demanding applications and guarantees at least 980MHz. There are a total of 8 geometry units and 112 texture units, along with 32 ROPs. This video card also uses the new PolyMorph 2.0 Engine which NVIDIA claims has 4x the tessellation performance of the Radeon HD 7970.
The GeForce GTX 670 is designed to be paired with 2GB of GDDR5 memory on a 256-bit bus, running at 1502MHz for a 6.0Gbps data rate and a maximum theoretical bandwidth of 192.2GB per second. The typical board power is 170W which will work with the advanced diagnostics to create more efficient and lower overall power consumption. A standard GeForce GTX 670 only requires two 6-pin PCI-E connectors. It can support up to 4 displays on a single video card, with one Dual Link DVI-I connector, one Dual Link DVI-D connector, one HDMI connector and one DisplayPort connector.
GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC
Compared to the reference GeForce GTX 670 model that NVIDIA released, the GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC video card is different in so many ways. The GPU itself has all of the same specifications, and there are 2GB of memory. The GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC is printed on GALAXY's custom PCB. The custom PCB is full length, not following the shortened PCB that NVIDIA had paired the GPU with.
The GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC is equipped with a stout factory overclock, and that makes us extremely happy. NVIDIA's reference design has a GTX 670 running at 915MHz with a Boost clock of 980MHz, and the memory running 6GHz. The GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC has a base frequency of 1006MHz (same as a GeForce GTX 680), with a boost clock of 1085MHz, and the memory unchanged at 6GHz (also, the same as a GeForce GTX 680). The GPU Boost for our video card was 27MHz higher than a GeForce GTX 680 cards. So the GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC is very similar to the GeForce GTX 680 in terms of frequencies, but 192 less shaders.
The GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 also has a custom cooling solution, which includes four nickel plated heat pipes that directly contact the GPU, and spread across the length of the video card. These heat pipes directly contact the finned heat sink, which has a high surface area to help effectively spread heat. The video card also has dual fans to help more efficiently remove the heat on the video card. The fans are extremely light weight, and have smooth blades with sharp edges to help cut through air and reduce wind resistance. This means moving more air, while still remaining quiet.
GALAXY has its own overclocking program, Xtreme Tuner Plus, to be used when overclocking this video card or looking at diagnostics. The GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC also comes with a 3 year extended warranty. Unfortunately like all other custom GeForce GTX 600 series video cards, the GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC sells for $439.99 at Newegg. You can read more about the GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC's specifications here.
GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC Pictures
The GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC comes in a nicely packaged box. The box points out that the video card is factory overclocked, and that it has custom cooling with dual fans. It also promotes the 3 year extended warranty that comes with it. This 3 year warranty does require online registration. Also it is worth noting that GALAXY representatives monitor the HardForum for anyone having issues that need to be attended to. The video card itself came wrapped in an anti-static bag and fit snug in the packaging.
The software bundle included a driver installation disk, a quick start guide, and a user manual. There is also a flier explaining how to register the video card to receive the extended 3 year warranty (2 years without registration). The accessory bundle contains an 8-pin PCIe to dual-Molex connector, a 6-pin PCIe to dual-Molex connector, and a DVI to VGA adaptor.
The GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC has a very sleek, high tech look and feel to it. The casing that surrounds the heatsink and houses the two fans is aluminum and runs across the top and bottom of the video card. The two fans are very light weight and have a glossy finished surface. The card is printed on GALAXY's custom blue PCB, which has 6 slots cut into it where the MOSFETs are, which allows air to pass freely through these and help remove extra heat.
One of the more unique things about the physical build of this video card is a small LED backlit display that reads GeForce GTX 670. While the video card is powered on, the light fades in and out. We appreciate GALAXY showing some of its innovative side with this purely decorative display.
The rear I/O panel houses a Dual-Link DVI-I connector, a Dual-Link DVI-D connector, an HDMI connector, and a DisplayPort connector. The top of the GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC houses the power connectors, which require an 8-pin PCIe and 6-pin PCIe power adaptors and a 500 watt power supply to run. The GALAXY GeForce GTX 670 GC measures 10 and 1/8th inches in length, 1.5 inches wide, and 4 inches in height.