NVIDIA launches the fastest and one expensive single GPU card to date in the GeForce GTX Titan

by: John -
More On: GeForce GTX Titan
NVIDIA’s not sitting on their laurels even though their Kepler line of graphics card has been pretty successful. Today, they are launching the fastest single GPU video card with a product that NVIDIA’s really excited about. We’re talking about the GeForce GTX Titan.

Born from the same GPU that the super computers at the Oakridge National Labs has in the GK110, the GeForce GTX Titan is NVIDIA’s consumer version that’s powering those incredible fast computers and is looking to be the workhorse in today and future games.

Based on the Kepler architecture, the GeForce GTX Titan features 2688 CUDA cores, 4.5 teraflops of processing power, 6GB of DDR5 memory on a 384-bit interface, and running at a core clock speed of 837MHz. The boost clock is at 876MHz. Spec wise, this gives the Titan the largest frame buffer of any graphics card out there. Length wise, it sits at a manageable 10.5”. 

With so much power, one of the big things that NVIDIA had to solve was the power consumption.  The GeForce GTX Titan has a 250W TDP, which is less than  the GTX 690. 

NVIDIA’s really done a lot to try and make this card power efficient as well as making it quiet. To help cool down the card, the Titan features a very high efficiency vapor chamber and an extended fin stack for greater cooling area. NVIDIA’s really tried to make the card quiet as well and offers up a bunch of controls to allow you to adjust the voltage and RPM to optimize fan speed and temperature to your liking. It’s important to have a lot of control and efficient, quiet cooling because you can run three of these in SLI configuration and having those many cards so close together can cause havoc in temperature if not done right.

To also help with temperature control and performance, NVIDIA is introducing GPU Boost 2.0 with the GeForce GTX Titan. While the previous version used power  in the algorithm to determine various settings, 2.0 uses temperature and this produced faster speeds and a higher reliability point. Because it’s temperature based, there’s an increase in the max voltage that the program deems safe. Also, the variance in temperature when the card is running is tighter and thus can keep the card at a higher performing level since GPU Boost 2.0 can control temperature much better. You can, of course, set the temperature point to be cooler if you want to run the card that way and wish to have a little less performance but lower temperature. You’ll also have the choice to overvolt past the long term reliability point, if you wish with a warning from NVIDIA. The options are up to you with GPU Boost 2.0.

Not only will you be able to overclock the card, but there’s a chance you’ll be able to overclock the display to. Display overclocking is trying to push your monitor to run at a higher Hz. Contrary to popular belief, it’s the video card that sends the signal to the monitor on what Hz it should run. Some monitors rated at 60Hz can run at 70 or even 80Hz. NVIDIA’s going to let you try and push your monitor even more with the latest software update.

So, with all that’s going into the GeForce GTX Titan, NVIDIA’s trying to produce a card that’s both fast and usable in many configurations, such as the increasingly popular small form factor. NVIDIA said that many OEMs were impressed with the performance they were getting from the Titan as well as the ability to run it cool and quiet. While the previous high for SFF computers in video cards were the GeForce GTX 680, the GeForce GTX Titan is now the king in the SFF world. 

Normally, NVIDIA will release a card in a numeric stack that will let you know the level of performance that you can expect. But with the Titan, this is something that’s different in their eyes so it’s going by its own name rather than falling in line with other SKUs. 

Performance wise, you should see the GTX 690 be faster in single card configuration, but be beaten in Quad-SLI configuration by a 3-Way SLI GeForce GTX Titan setup. That means if you want to play Crysis 3 at 5760x1080 at max settings, three Titans is the way to go.

All this does come at a price however. The GeForce GTX Titan, available on February 25th from ASUS and eVGA in the United States, will retail for $999. Yeah, it’s pretty expensive and if you’re evening thinking about SLI-ing this thing, I hope you have deep pockets. For those that want it pre-built into a system, you should be able to order one on February 21. It’s not the next generation video card from NVIDIA, but it looks like it’s going to be the fastest one to date when compared to other single GPU cards out there.

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