Gigabyte GTX 260 (216SP) 896MB Super Overclock Review

by Michael "SKYMTL" Hoenig     |     September 17, 2009

Gigabyte GTX 260 (216SP) 896MB Super Overclock Review

Manufacturer’s Product Page: Gigabyte GTX 260 SOC
Product Number: GV-N26SO-896I
Price: Approx $200USD / $220CAD
Warranty: 3-years

With several evolutions under its belt, Nvidia’s GTX 200-series cards have gradually moved from being expensive, overly power hungry products to more affordable and slightly more efficient through manufacturing revisions. While some people may call these cards a bit long in the tooth at this point, anyone will tell you that as an architecture matures and companies get a better handle on it, more and more variations of it are released. We have seen overclocked GTX 280, GTX 285 and GTX 260 cards aplenty in the past but that has all changed of late with more intricate cards being released. In the last few months new products like the ASUS GTX 285 Matrix and the more recent EVGA GTX 285 Classified have shown just how far companies have come in their customization of the 200-series. Today, Gigabyte adds their name to the growing list of companies that are pushing the limits of this current architecture.

Even though the name GTX 260 won’t exactly inspire awe in most jaded hardware enthusiasts, Gigabyte is endeavouring to keep the Nvidia fires burning with a new take on a tried, tested and true platform. Its name? The GTX 260 Super Overclock.

Gigabyte’s Super Overclock is the card that blows away all the stops when it comes to designing what is hoped will be the torch carrier for the entire GTX 260 lineup. Like many other current Gigabyte GPUs, this one makes use of the high quality components from the Ultra Durable Video initiative along with another interesting addition: a highly binned GPU. We will be going into more detail about Gigabyte’s custom binning process a little later but for now lets just say that it allows them to hand pick the GPU cores which are best suited for high clocks and better efficiency. This allows their Super Overclock card to sport the highest out of the box clock seeds of any GTX 260 currently on the market.

Naturally, you are all wondering about pricing and whether this card will ever become available at retail. According to Gigabyte, we should see the Super Overclock hit the same price point as the lowest-priced GTX 275 cards which are around $200USD or $220CAD. That isn’t a huge premium to pay when you remember most other GTX 260s go for around $175USD. Considering the binning process weeds out the majority of cores, the number of cards in the retail channel will never reach that of a stock card. That being said, we expect that retailers will receive their first batches at the beginning of October.

Granted, it is a little late in the game for this product but as a wise man once said: better late than never. If anything, the Gigabyte GTX 260 Super Overclock will add a new option for everyone in the market for a sub-$250 Nvidia card.


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