Overclocking the ASUS GTX 580 Voltage Tweak Edition
With the launch of the GTX 580 less than a week ago, NVIDIA proved they could take the original GF100 architecture and improve it in a number of ways. Not only was overall efficiency increased but the performance per watt attained by the new GF110-based card was leaps and bounds better than the previous ultra high end GTX 480.
To say that we were impressed with the direction NVIDIA took with the GTX 580 would be an understatement of epic proportions. In our opinion it can be considered one of the best cards released in 2010. Performance is there in spades and from all indications, sales have been extremely brisk at a number of North America’s largest retailers.
The one aspect which piqued everyone’s attention at launch was the GTX 580’s willingness to overclock. Unlike past flagship products that are already running at or near their allowable limits, NVIDIA seems to have built in a good amount of headroom into their latest and greatest. Naturally, this has led to board partners trying to wring as much as they can from these cards in order to create their own overclocked versions. Some like EVGA and ASUS had overclocked cards right from the get go while others won’t be all that far behind.
When overclocking is left in the hands of the end-user, how far can these GTX 580 cards really be pushed? In order to answer this, we’re going to take the ASUS GTX 580 Voltage Tweak Edition and push clock speeds to the limits of the stock heatsink. Since ASUS bundles their own overclocking software called Smart Doctor along with all of their cards to increase the core voltage as well. This allowed us to squeeze every last drop out of the card which ASUS provided without resorting to any exotic cooling methods. What kind of performance does equate? We're about to find out...
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