Nvidia GeForce GTX 760 review

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May 4, 2013
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In our review of the GeForce GTX 770 we noted that Nvidia's second-generation "Kepler" graphics cards were all about boosting performance while increasing value - a noble sentiment for sure, but with a sticker price in the £300 region, that's still a hell of a lot of money to shell out for just one component of a gaming PC. The GTX 760, the latest addition to the product line-up, looks like a much more tempting proposition. Priced at £210/$250 (though expect the odd partner card at the £200 level), it offers most of the performance of the more expensive GTX 670, and in the process puts the £240/$300 Radeon HD 7950 in a very difficult position. Could we have found a new enthusiasts' favourite?

Nvidia says that the GTX 760 is designed to replace the outgoing GTX 660 Ti, in itself a highly regarded piece of kit. Looking at the specs, the new card actually has fewer CUDA core units - 1152 vs. the 1344 found in the Ti (and indeed the GTX 670). The key difference is bandwidth: the constricted 192-bit memory bus of the Ti is given the boot in exchange for a full 256-bit interface, upping peak bandwidth from 144.2GB/s to 192.2GB/s. Base clock rises to 980MHz compared to the 660 Ti's 915MHz, while the auto-overclocking boost clock reaches 1033MHz (up from 980MHz). Additionally, the amount of ROPs rises from 24 to 32 - very useful for operating at higher resolutions. In essence then, Nvidia has traded cores for more speed and extra bandwidth, opening up the opportunity for more satisfying performance at display formats like 2560x1440.

But it's the comparison with the more powerful GTX 670 that is perhaps more intriguing - the new card may only have 85 per cent of the CUDA cores, but base clocks are around seven per cent faster, and GPU Boost 2.0 technology could well help even the odds. Bearing in mind the price difference between the two cards, the idea of getting something approaching GTX 670-level performance in the £200/$250 price-bracket is mouthwatering.

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