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Review: Nvidia GeForce GTX 670
by Damien Triolet
Published on July 4, 2012

Test protocol
For this test, we used the protocol introduced for the report on the GeForce GTX 680 which includes some new games: Alan Wake, Anno 2070, Batman Arkham City, Battlefield 3, F1 2011 and Total War Shogun 2. We also added The Witcher 2 Enhanced Edition.

We have decided no longer to use the level of MSAA (4x and 8x) as the main criteria for segmenting our results. Many games with deferred rendering offer other forms of antialiasing, the most common being FXAA, developed by Nvidia. There’s therefore no point in drawing up an index based on a certain antialiasing level, which in the past allowed us to judge MSAA efficiency, which can vary according to the implementation. At 1920x1080 we therefore carried out the tests with two different quality levels: extreme and very high, which automatically includes a minimum of antialiasing (either MSAA 4x or FXAA/MLAA/AAA).

Also we no longer show decimals in game performance results so as to make the graph more readable. We nevertheless note these values and use them when calculating the index. If you’re observant you’ll notice that the size of the bars also reflects this.

All the Radeons were tested with the Catalyst 12.4 drivers and all the GeForces were tested with the 301.33 drivers.

We added a Radeon HD 5870 as a reference as more and more users of these first DirectX 11 graphics cards will probably be looking at an update.

As we explained in the introduction, the GeForce GTX 680 and 670 were on the one hand tested as they come, which is to say with the specificities of our sample in terms of maximum turbo clock (GTX 680 1110 MHz and GTX 670 1084 MHz) and on the other at their minimum guaranteed specs (GTX 680 and GTX 670). To do this we played with the overclocking settings to reduce the base clock by slightly adjusting the energy consumption limit so that the clock in practice would correspond to that of a card with a maximum turbo clock equal to that of the official GPU Boost clock. Note that this isn’t the same as turning GPU Boost off!

To recap, we took the opportunity of the report on the GeForce GTX 690 to introduce the X79 platform and a Core i7 3960X into our test system so as to benefit from PCI Express 3.0. Note that the activation of PCI Express 3.0 isn‘t automatic on the GeForce GTX 600s and requires a registry modification, which we of course effected and which gives an average gain of +/- 1%.

Test configuration
Intel Core i7 3960X (HT off, Turbo 1/2/3/4/6 cores: 4 GHz)
Asus P9X79 WS
8 GB DDR3 2133 G.Skill
Windows 7 64 bits
GeForce beta 301.11 drivers
Catalyst 12.4

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