MSI GTX 670 Power Edition OC Review

Author: SKYMTL
Date: September 5, 2012
Product Name: GTX 670 Power Edition OC
Part Number: N670 PE 2GD5/OC
Warranty: 3 Years
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A Closer Look at the MSI GTX 670 Power Edition OC

For those who have seen MSI’s other cards from the last few generations, the GTX 670 Power Edition’s design is déjà vu all over again. Like past designs, it uses the Twin Frozr IV heatsink, a predominantly black fan shroud and a touch of blue to distinguish it from the Lightning series.

The Twin Frozr IV is currently one of the most highly regarded heatsink designs on the market, and with good reason. It uses five large heatpipes that make direct contact with the core to conduct heat towards the fin array, which is then cooled by the two large 80mm fans. MSI has also included secondary cast aluminum heatsinks over the VRM components to enhance heat distribution and hopefully allow for additional overclocking stability.

While the Twin Frozr IV may use an enviable design, its large internal components cause it to project past the custom PCB’s edge by 1”, making the GTX 670 Power Edition OC about 10.5” long. MSI actually adapts this basic heatsink layout for lower end and premium cards (like the Lightning) by upscaling or downgrading a few elements.

The Power Edition’s fans are programmed to counter rotate at high speeds for about 30 seconds at system startup in order to remove any dust that’s been accumulating on the heatsink fins. This “dust removal technology” is supposed to keep the Twin Frozr IV heatsink operating at peak thermal efficiency so temperatures don’t deviate over the card’s lifetime.

As some of you may remember, the reference GTX 670’s PCB is extremely short but MSI has expanded upon this to ensure compatibility with the Power Edition’s upgraded components and enhanced 5+2 phase PWM design. Unfortunately, the PCB’s faintly brown color may be a turn-off for some people.

As with every “Power Edition” card, the GTX 670 version incorporates a number of items which are meant to enhance overclocking and longevity while also ensuring the utmost stability when using MSI’s unique Triple Overvoltage feature. Unfortunately, we can’t conclusively test any of these claims here.

MSI has been talking about Military Class III components for some time now and most of their high end graphics cards ship with a certificate proclaiming this status. Military Class III is simply a marketing term that means MSI chooses the highest quality components, all of which are MIL-STD-810G certified. While this may not mean all that much for your run of the mill layman, it should (hopefully) lead to increase ASIC longevity.

The frugal power requirements of NVIDIA’s Kepler-based GTX 670 allow the Power Edition OC to use a pair of 6-pin connectors while still retailing enough overhead for overclocking. In the picture above, you can also see how MSI utilizes a full-length retention / stiffening strip to reinforce the PCB against flex.

Every one of NVIDIA’s board partners seems to be content using the reference design’s video outputs. They consist of two DVI connectors, a HDMI and finally a DisplayPort connector, which –when properly used- allows for 3+1 NVIDIA surround configurations.

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