Now that the GF110 is out in the form of the GTX580 (what Fermi was meant to be), we are beginning to wonder what nVidia’s strategy will be.
Will they start the long slow process of replacing the 4 series? Will they do something like AMD and allow them to coexist? Well, the wait for that answer is over. Now we have the latest of the GTX 5xx series GPUs out in the wild and we know what nVidia is looking to do.
After the semi-botched job of the GTX480 nVidia was able to pull things together with the GTX470. Believe it or not, this GPU was a much better-selling than the GTX480 was. This was especially true of the OEM non-reference designs which in many cases were able to outperform the GTX480.
So the GTX580 stepped in to fully replace the GTX480. This gives nVidia a real flagship for the lineup (the GTX flavor of GPU), but that leaves a rather big performance gap between the GTX580 and the 470 (even the super clocked ones). At this point nVidia needs something in the middle, not only for performance but also for price. Their answer to this is the GTX570. This $349.99 card should fit nicely between the GTX580 and the 470. So let’s take a look and see if nVidia’s strategy is going to work out.
The GTX570 uses the same GF110 that we find in its bigger brother with a reduced shader count and clock speed. The same hardware power and thermal monitoring system found on the GTX580 is reproduced on the GTX570. We also find the same vapor chamber cooling system. So there is not really much that is new here.
The final specs of the GTX570 come out something like this:
- Core Clock Speed 732MHz
- 480 CUDA Cores at 1464MHz
- 15 PolyMorph Raster Engines
- 60 Texture Units
- 40 ROP units
- 3 x 64 Bit memory controllers [nVidia lists this as 384 Bit]
- 1.28GB GDDR5 memory at 3800MHz
- 219 Watt TDP
- 97c Thermal Threshold
A closer look at the GTX 570 Like we said above there is not a vast difference between the GTX580 and 570 in terms of hardware and even less of one in terms of physical appearance, as witnessed in the below image.
The test system build and comments
- GTX570 and GTX580 (both supplied by nVidia)
- Asus EAH5870 V2 S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Call of Pripyat Edition (supplied by Asus)
MSi N465GTX Twin Frozr II (supplied by MSi)
eVGA GTX480 Hydro Copper (supplied by eVGA)
- ASUS EAH5850TOP DirectCU (supplied by ASUS)
- AMD Radeon HD 5870 (supplied by AMD)
- AMD Radeon HD 5970 (supplied by AMD)
- Zotac GTX 285 AMP! Edition 1GB, flashed to stock BIOS (supplied by Zotac)
Before I begin, let me just note that overclocking is always going to be a hit and miss thing. The speeds that we are able to reach do not indicate what all cards are capable of. We can show you potential only, your speeds will vary based on the systems you use and the individual cards purchased.
With that in mind, overclocking the GTX570 was not much fun. I was not able to get much more than 815 on the core and 1950 on the memory clock. Added to this was my frustration with the nVidia system tool continually dropping the overclock back to stock speeds (sometimes in the middle of the app).
After a few annoying hours I had to just deal with the minimal overclock run through the apps. The good thing here is that companies like Asus, eVGA, GIGABYTE, and MSI will be producing non-reference cards based on this GPU that will have voltage tweaks to help stabilize the GPU at higher clocks. I am pretty sure that once these are out we will see the true overclocking potential of the GTX570 come to light.
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