The Test, Crysis, BattleForge, & Metro 2033

Yesterday NVIDIA launched their first 290 series beta driver - this was intended to be the launch driver for the GTX 560-448, but QA kept it held up longer than expected. In lieu of that we are using 285.62, the WHQL 285 series driver for the GTX 560-448.

For our look at performance we’ll be taking a look at our Zotac card both at NVIDIA’s stock speeds and at Zotac’s factory overclock. For power/temp/noise we’ll only be looking at Zotac’s card – the lack of a reference design means that temperatures and noise can’t be extrapolated for other partners’ cards.

CPU: Intel Core i7-920 @ 3.33GHz
Motherboard: Asus Rampage II Extreme
Chipset Drivers: Intel 9.1.1.1015 (Intel)
Hard Disk: OCZ Summit (120GB)
Memory: Patriot Viper DDR3-1333 3x2GB (7-7-7-20)
Video Cards: AMD Radeon HD 6870
AMD Radeon HD 6970
AMD Radeon HD 6950
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560 Ti
Zotac GeForce GTX 560 Ti 448 Cores Limited Edition
Video Drivers: NVIDIA GeForce Driver 285.62
AMD Catalyst 11.11a
OS: Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit

As this is not a new architecture, we’ll keep the commentary thinner than usual. The near-GTX 570 specifications mean there aren’t any surprises with game performance.

Starting as always with Crysis, at 2560 we can see that while GF100 cards perform decently at 2560, it’s really only the GTX 580 that stands a chance in any shader-heavy game. The GTX 560-448 in that respect is a lot like the GTX 560 Ti: it’s best suited for 1920 and below.

At 1920 and 1680 the GTX 560-448 is well ahead of its GF114-based namesake. As with the specs and architecture, the GTX 560-448 has more in common with the GTX 570 than it does the GTX 560 Ti. The end result is that the GTX 560-448 is just shy of 50fps at 1920, only a few percent off of the GTX 570. With Zotac’s overclock that closes the gap exactly, delivering the same 51.1fps performance. This goes to show just how close the GTX 560-448 and GTX 570 really are. NVIDIA may not want to call it a GTX 570 LE, but that’s really what it is.

Meanwhile compared to AMD’s lineup things are a little less rosy. The GTX 570 at launch was closer to competition for the Radeon HD 6970, but here the GTX 570 and GTX 560-448 are tied by or beaten by AMD’s cheaper 6950.

Looking at the minimum framerates we see the same trends. The GTX 560-448 is well above the GTX 560 Ti – by 13% at 1920 – but the 6950 is once again the victor.

Moving on to BattleForge, we see the emergence of AMD and NVIDIA switching places based on the game being tested. BattleForge favors NVIDIA cards, and as a result the GTX 560-448 does quite well here, tying AMD’s more expensive 6970 at 1920. Zotac’s overclock further improves thing, but as BattleForge likes memory bandwidth, it can’t overcome the GTX 570’s 5% memory bandwidth advantage.

With Metro 2033 we see AMD and NVIDIA swap positions again, this time leaving AMD’s lineup with the very slight edge. This puts the 6950 ahead of the GTX 560-448 at 1920, even with Zotac’s overclock. Practically speaking however you’re not going to break 40fps on a single card without a GTX 580.

Meet The Zotac GeForce GTX 560 Ti 448 Cores Limited Edition HAWX, Civ V, Battlefield BC2, & STALKER
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  • Marlin1975 - Tuesday, November 29, 2011 - link

    I can get a 6950 for $200 AR right now. The 560-448 is going in the low $300 range right now.

    Unless it gets 50% more frames/performance it is not better than a 6950.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8...
    Reply
  • Finally - Tuesday, November 29, 2011 - link

    For several months now the 2 leading cards in any P/P comparison have been the HD6870 and its HD6850 twin. I just picked one up this month and I'm delighted. As long as consoles won't learn how to upgrade their GPUs, I don't see a necessity for anything above that range of graphics power...

    Of course, this is an *throws up* enthusiast website, so anyone who's not willing to build a system with at least 2 GPUs, a 1200W power supply and a triple monitor setup, leave the room, we are not interested in you.
    Reply
  • Leyawiin - Tuesday, November 29, 2011 - link

    The cheapest 1GB HD 6950 on Newegg (who is generally the lowest price on video cards) is $240. The cheapest HD 6950 2GB is $255. You pay that upfront - rebates (if they go well) are months down the road. The GTX 560 448 is about 10% faster. Yes, its the better card. Reply
  • Marlin1975 - Tuesday, November 29, 2011 - link

    The cheapest 560-448 I have seen so far is in the low $300 range. I can get a 6950 in the low $200 range.

    10% more performance for 50% more price is not better.
    Reply
  • Ushio01 - Tuesday, November 29, 2011 - link

    The image of the GF110 on the first page is wrong it shows 3 deactivated SM units which would make this card a 416 shader part. It should show 2 deactivated SM units for a 448 shader part. Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Tuesday, November 29, 2011 - link

    Thanks. You are correct. That will be fixed later today. Reply
  • Per Hansson - Tuesday, November 29, 2011 - link

    Hi, what about overclocking?
    Is this GPU poor at it since it's been binned so hard or is it just that another SM unit where bad while not hindering the clockspeed of the chip?
    Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Wednesday, November 30, 2011 - link

    I did not have a chance to test overclocking (I only had a single day to test the card). However since NVIDIA is binning chips based on defective SMs, I have no reason to believe that overclocking should be significantly different from the 570. Reply
  • MrSpadge - Tuesday, November 29, 2011 - link

    "NVIDIA is purposely introducing namespace collisions, and while they have their reasons I don’t believe them to be good enough."

    That nails it. Not sure if I should laugh or cry about the current name. They introduced a 3-letter prefix and 3-digit numbers to get rid of the obscure subscripts.. only to reintroduce the "Ti" (why was that one not the GTX565?!) and now this addition to "Ti". Hilarious, if this were a commedy show.
    And remind you, just because nVidia did much worse in the past doesn't make this any better...

    MrS
    Reply
  • Belard - Tuesday, November 29, 2011 - link

    That is why I DO NOT BUY or SELL nvidia products. This new name proves they are getting dumber by the month. This should be a 570-LE, simple .

    All these names are stupid since the end of the GeForce 9000 series. While AMD has been mostly good with their names... Mostly. AMD HD 6870, easy.

    Gtx vs gt is stupid since they don't make a 550 gt and 550 gtx. TI = totally worthless for a name. If this only atttracts dumb customers, they can keep them.
    Reply

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