EVGA GTX 460 1GB Superclocked EE (External Exhaust) Review
For all intents and purposes, the GTX 460 has proven to be a boon for NVIDIA and their partners. Not only has it received glowing reviews from the press but it has also exhibited extremely strong sales figures at a time of year when people are usually more concerned about being outside than playing with a new GPU. Several large online retailers have been struggling to keep the cards in stock and according to our contacts, it’s not for lack of incoming stock. After more than a year, NVIDIA finally has a card that will completely satisfy budget-conscious gamers who want DX11 support.
In our original review and again in our SLI scaling article, it was made quite apparent that 1GB GTX 460 cards would initially be hard to find. As such, most of our reviews thus far have concentrated upon the $199 768MB version which really does offer an excellent bang for buck ratio. Now that the 1GB cards are starting to penetrate retailers’ shelves a bit more, we’re starting to see a wide selection of custom cooled and pre-overclocked cards alongside the reference $230 products. Gigabyte, MSI, EVGA and others have all jumped off the starting blocks with these higher performance versions and unlike past 400-series products, we have actually begun seeing some meaningful clock speed increases.
EVGA has been well known for their Superclocked series of cards and since the demise of BFG and XFX’s NVIDIA card business, they’ve become the de-facto leaders when it comes to high performance, lifetime warranty totting NVIDIA cards. PNY and Zotac may offer the same types of warranty terms but their current market penetration isn’t anywhere near that of EVGA’s.
The Superclocked series has also been seeing a renaissance as it has made the move to the GTX 460 cards. As we saw, the clock speed increases given to the 768MB card allowed it to become a force to be reckoned with. Now EVGA is releasing a Superclocked version of the 1GB card as well but has given it a bit of a twist to go along with some awe-inspiring performance numbers. While reference GTX 460 uses a centrally-mounted fan that exhausts a good amount of hot air into your case, EVGA’s External Exhaust version does exactly what its name promises: it moves the heat produced by the core away from case’s innards. This will result in lower system temperatures but there are some tradeoffs that we will get into later.
So far the GTX 460 has impressed us and we’re expecting this 1GB Superclocked edition to really stretch its legs at certain resolutions. This increased performance along with a heatsink design that breaks with the reference model’s could put this EVGA card near the top of our list.
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