Meet The GeForce GTX 670

Because of the relatively low power consumption of GK104 relative to past high-end NVIDIA GPUs, NVIDIA has developed a penchant for small cards. While the GTX 680 was a rather standard 10” long, NVIDIA also managed to cram the GTX 690 into the same amount of space. Meanwhile the GTX 670 takes this to a whole new level.

We’ll start at the back as this is really where NVIDIA’s fascination with small size makes itself apparent. The complete card is 9.5” long, however the actual PCB is far shorter at only 6.75” long, 3.25” shorter than the GTX 680’s PCB. In fact it would be fair to say that rather than strapping a cooler onto a card, NVIDIA strapped a card onto a cooler. NVIDIA has certainly done short PCBs before – such as with one of the latest GTX 560 Ti designs – but never on a GTX x70 part before. But given the similarities between GK104 and GF114, this isn’t wholly surprising, if not to be expected.

In any case this odd pairing of a small PCB with a large cooler is no accident. With a TDP of only 170W NVIDIA doesn’t necessarily need a huge PCB, but because they wanted a blower for a cooler they needed a large cooler. The positioning of the GPU and various electronic components meant that the only place to put a blower fan was off of the PCB entirely, as the GK104 GPU is already fairly close to the rear of the card. Meanwhile the choice of a blower seems largely driven by the fact that this is an x70 card – NVIDIA did an excellent job with the GTX 560 Ti’s open air cooler, which was designed for the same 170W TDP, so the choice is effectively arbitrary from a technical standpoint (there’s no reason to believe $400 customers are any less likely to have a well-ventilated case than $250 buyers). Accordingly, it will be NVIDIA’s partners that will be stepping in with open air coolers of their own designs.

Starting as always at the top, as we previously mentioned the reference GTX 670 is outfitted with a 9.5” long fully shrouded blower. NVIDIA tells us that the GTX 670 uses the same fan as the GTX 680, and while they’re nearly identical in design, based on our noise tests they’re likely not identical. On that note unlike the GTX 680 the fan is no longer placed high to line up with the exhaust vent, so the GTX 670 is a bit more symmetrical in design than the GTX 680 was.


Note: We dissaembled the virtually identical EVGA card here instead

Lifting the cooler we can see that NVIDIA has gone with a fairly simple design here. The fan vents into a block-style aluminum heatsink with a copper baseplate, providing cooling for the GPU. Elsewhere we’ll see a moderately sized aluminum heatsink clamped down on top of the VRMs towards the front of the card. There is no cooling provided for the GDDR5 RAM.


Note: We dissaembled the virtually identical EVGA card here instead

As for the PCB, as we mentioned previously due to the lower TDP of the GTX 670 NVIDIA has been able to save some space. The VRM circuitry has been moved to the front of the card, leaving the GPU and the RAM towards the rear and allowing NVIDIA to simply omit a fair bit of PCB space. Of course with such small VRM circuitry the reference GTX 670 isn’t built for heavy overclocking – like the other GTX 600 cards NVIDIA isn’t even allowing overvolting on reference GTX 670 PCBs – so it will be up to partners with custom PCBs to enable that kind of functionality. Curiously only 4 of the 8 Hynix R0C GDDR5 RAM chips are on the front side of the PCB; the other 4 are on the rear. We typically only see rear-mounted RAM in cards with 16/24 chips, as 8/12 will easily fit on the same side.

Elsewhere at the top of the card we’ll find the PCIe power sockets and SLI connectors. Since NVIDIA isn’t scrambling to save space like they were with the GTX 680, the GTX 670’s PCIe power sockets are laid out in a traditional side-by-side manner. As for the SLI connectors, since this is a high-end GeForce card NVIDIA provides 2 connectors, allowing for the card to be used in 3-way SLI.

Finally at the front of the card NVIDIA is using the same I/O port configuration and bracket that we first saw with the GTX 680. This means 1 DL-DVI-D port, 1 DL-DVI-I port, 1 full size HDMI 1.4 port, and 1 full size DisplayPort 1.2. This also means the GTX 670 follows the same rules as the GTX 680 when it comes to being able to idle with multiple monitors.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 Meet The EVGA GeForce GTX 670 Superclocked
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  • Spunjji - Friday, May 11, 2012 - link

    Thank you for being a voice of sanity in an otherwise brutally argumentative and deeply sad comments section. +1 to you. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Friday, May 11, 2012 - link

    "Voice of sanity" your amd fanboy friend, got the 43% larger amd wafer die size "cost drop not a problem" a bit overlooked, not to mention the 3 added free games additional cost.

    Is it a voice of reason to claim the largest base cost of the card at 43% greater is no problem since the "dies" are "about the same size" ?
    ROFL... tsk tsk.
    Reply
  • SlyNine - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Its 43% greater now.

    Also you seem to forget the 7970 wins in 5 out of 10 of Anandtechs benchmarks.

    Since you're going to argue this with me I'll put it out right now.

    Crysis AMD
    Metro AMD
    Dirt 3 ( on the MOST Intensive test 5760x1200 min frames) Tied, but to me min frames is more important so I'd rather have AMD in that situation.

    Now you can argue , But NVidia wins on the other res's But since this is the ONLY time it even gets below 60 this is the ONLY test that it really makes a difference.

    ShoGun, AMD, big time, ya nvidia wins when FPS is over 100, but AMD wins by a lot when FPS is at a premium. With a driver fix I'm sure it will be a lot closer.

    Batman, Basically a tie, yea Nvidia takes it but C'mon, 1 fps when it matters most. My guess is if they added 4x aa to the 3 screen mode AMD would take it.

    Portal 2 Nvidia kills AMD, esp. in the high res, because that's where fps are low enough that the diff matters.

    Battlefield 3 Nvidia kills amd again. and again when FPS matters.

    SC2, Nvidia is faster. FPS is so high it doesn't matter But AMD is catching up fast and with the 5760res I wonder if AMD wouldn't' win. and by then FPS might actually matter.

    Skyrim, same as SC2, AMD is catching up fast at the higher resolution, if it keeps going AMD might come out ahead where FPS is low enough that the difference matters.

    Civ 5, tie. With the trend the Nvidia might be better at higher res here.

    Portal 2 and BF3 are the to situation in Anands testing suit where Nvidia is MUCH better.

    But other than that FPS either doesn't matter or AMD is winning when FPS is low enough that the difference matters.

    As far as future games, we have NO idea what card might be better, but AMD does seem to have more raw power, and has more ram.

    In compute AMD won 2 , loses one by like 7% and then actually loses one by a lot. Of course it doesn't have a cuda score so how to you count that as a loss, that's stupid.
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    You make excuses across the board for the amd card, and nVidia's card is a smoother experience anyway if you want to glom onto min frames - and we haven't even used things like adaptive v-sync (better min frame rates for nVidia), nor did you figure in the enormous drivers difference.

    It's just such a huge gap when everything is considered it's beyond ridiculous to go for the amd card, as this amd favoring reviewer even admits.

    Have your favorite brand, but you've got stretch and spin to justify it.
    Reply
  • Galidou - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    I could just really stop answering you if that wasn't for the fact you're being so much disrespectful. I have a little problem with people lacking of respect, I have to let them know they are, even more when they do not think they are lacking respect... Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    You have never answered anything late comer troll Galidou, you're a pure 100% trolling personal attacker right now fella in all your posts so far. You have said absolutely nothing, so it is clear you should have never posted. Reply
  • Galidou - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    I'm not attacking your person, just the way you throw your arguments at people calling them names like they are pure ignorant worthless living zombies... it just feels that way... Reply
  • Gastec - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    "You make excuses across the board for the amd card, and nVidia's card is a smoother experience[..] - and we haven't even used things like..."
    We? WE?? YOU are from NVIDIA???? And you post here and admit it? I think you can get fired for doing this.
    Or maybe you are not from nVidia but because you use a nVidia card you, for some very disturbing reason, feel like you are part of the company?
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Friday, May 11, 2012 - link

    Okay, first of all substantial competition is the GTX590 and the 6990, that both still beat the overpriced amd lost 3 and only won 2 compute benchmarks in that 2.5+ month evil amd price scalping period before the massive smack down the nVidia 680 delivered.
    Now nVidia made a third move, the 670, not the initial move as you spoke about it, and this third move is another massive smackdown on the already smacked down by the 680 failing and utterly depleted value 7970 has to endure.
    Nice try pretending the 1st smack down just occurred, but once again, what else to expect from an amd fanboy, and also clearly why another amd fanboy immediately thanked you a perfectly leveled headed post. LOL

    Now onto your other ridiculous spew, based on facts not twisted perceptions.
    You note the die sizes of the competing products, and conclude by stupid first look there is no reason amd cannot drop it's price (again) - you avoid the again, twice - (once for $$$(yes 3 figures), twice for 3 games added, now a 3rd time coming ) - but whatever, let's take your die size non chalant info and do our little math amd fanboys now desperately want to avoid.

    300mm sq. nVidia vs 365mm sq Amd - doesn't look so bad does it ?

    Unfortunately, the Amd die is well over 40% LARGER :)

    Sorry about that amd fanboy brainfart .... you forgot to multiply for AREA, hence size/cost of the wafer....

    300x300 vs 365x365

    90,000 nVidia wafer area vs 133,225 huge 43% + more amd wafer cost.

    So let's get this straight - do you still not really see a problem ?

    yankeeDDL > " AMD will need to drop the prices and I see really no reason why they couldn't, as they have just a marginally larger die size (300mm2 vs 365mm2) on the same fab/technology. "

    So 43% plus more base cost, no problem going a hundred bucks + games costs less... ?

    R O F L

    Thank you, as the amd fanboy said, for being such a clear thinking person with a calm and fair mind... (rolls eyes)
    Reply
  • SlyNine - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Its hard to say the 680 was a smack down when most people couldn't even get the card..

    You seem to be angered by the 7970. I agree that it was not a good deal. But its not a bad card either.
    Reply

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