NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 Ti Review - Maxwell Architecture debuts at $150
The GeForce GTX 750 Ti
The first card released based on the new NVIDIA Maxwell architecture, the GeForce GTX 750 Ti has a lot to live up to for such a small little package. Obviously the series indicator tells us a lot about where this card will perform and where it is priced. At $150, the GTX 750 Ti will go up against the GeForce GTX 650 Ti, the Radeon R7 260X and maybe even the Radeon R7 265 (recently announced but not yet available).
The GeForce GTX 750 Ti has a rather small PCB to go along with its small GPU. Without a need for a lot of power delivery mechanisms, NVIDIA was able to design a reference card that can fit into a lot of smaller computers. Gone also are the familiar shrouded designs of the GTX 700-series options before it.
|GeForce GTX 750 Ti||GeForce GTX 650 Ti||Radeon R7 265||Radeon R7 260X||Radeon R7 260|
|GPU Code name||GM107||GK106||Pitcairn||Bonaire||Bonaire|
|Rated Clock||1020 MHz||928 MHz||925 MHz||1100 MHz||1000 MHz|
|Memory Clock||5400 MHz||5400 MHz||5600 MHz||6500 MHz||6000 MHz|
|Memory Bandwidth||86.4 GB/s||86.4 GB/s||179 GB/s||104 GB/s||96 GB/s|
|TDP||60 watts||110 watts||150 watts||115 watts||95 watts|
|Peak Compute||1.30 TFLOPS||1.42 TFLOPS||1.89 TFLOPS||1.97 TFLOPS||1.53 TFLOPS|
At the heart of this card is the GM107 GPU, a 640 CUDA core part that on paper looks a little less impressive than it actually turned out to be. Even though the GTX 650 Ti has more raw processing power, in terms of peak compute as well as CUDA cores, the higher clock speed and improved efficiency of the Maxwell design give the GTX 750 Ti the clear edge in our testing.
Even though we are looking at a completely new architecture with the GTX 750 Ti, the clocks and GPU Boost technology work in the same way as they did with Kepler. That means you have a base clock, an advertised typical boost clock, and you can expect to see clock rates go over that top listed speed fairly often in-game.
One feature that the GTX 750 Ti card does NOT have is support for SLI which is quite disappointing. I'm not sure if this is a technological limitation (though I am sure higher end Maxwell parts will have SLI support) or one brought about purely by marketing and product differentiation. Most gamers that are buying $150 GPUs aren't likely to be worried about buying duplicate graphics cards for multi-GPU configurations, but, hey, the Radeon R7 260X has CrossFire implemented...
NVIDIA went with a pair of dual-link DVI outputs and a single mini-HDMI connection for displays. This is pretty odd to me as it means that stock cards like this will NOT be able to support NVIDIA's flagship feature, G-Sync. The good news for potential GTX 750 Ti buyers though is that partners are implementing DisplayPort on some other models so you'll like be able to find one with the display configuration you desire.
Even though the heatsink is small, it still takes up the space of two expansion slots. Again, board partners with NVIDIA are already working on single slot (and even a passive) cooler designs so you will likely find them in retail shortly after the launch window. It is worth nothing though that the cooler on this card is amazingly quiet - considering the size of the fan I expected the worst. Even under a full load the GPU temperature never got about 65C!
The back side of the GTX 750 Ti reference card is pretty boring as well, revealing only the number of memory chips at four.
Even though the reference model does not include a 6-pin power connection, there are clearly demarcations on the PCB for one to be installed. My guess is that NVIDIA was waiting until the last minute possible to decide on going full bore into the connector-less power levels.
Here she is in all her glory - the GM107 GPU, the first Maxwell part to find its way out to the world. The GPU is small but is actually 25% larger than the GK107 part it is replacing.