The GeForce GTX 670 series is a very nice performer, absolutely capable for 1920x1080/1200 and the newest games, which is the sweet spot these days and really, performance is not that far off from the GTX 680 at all. If we look at the Radeon 7970 series we also see that most of the time the GTX 670 definitely is the stronger product (with an exception here and there). So from the single GPU performance versus product point of view the GTX 670 manages to do really really well.
When you have the GeForce GTX 670 card in your hands it does feel a tad cheaper compared to the GTX 680 though, the cooler is less intricate and the sheer weight is so much lighter than the GTX 680.
At roughly 72 Degrees C the JetSTream cooling performance is definitely sufficient, the cooler however is a tad more noisy compared to the GTX 680 and makes a low-noise hum. It's not irritating or annoying, but you can hear it when the card is stressed .
Overall the card is just golden for the 1920x1080 and 1920x1200 monitor resolution, there's not a game out there that it can't deal with at that resolution. Anno 2070 at the best quality settings and 4xAA pushes 85 frames per second on average at 1920x1200, and still 48 fps at 2560X1600. In Crysis 2 we end at an average of 63 FPS in 1920x1200 with Ultra quality settings and that high resolution texture package and 4x AA.
Battlefield 3 is another example, with all eye candy opened up in game and again at 4xAA the card still pushes 57 FPS at 19x12 and that is just a couple of frames per second away from the GTX 680.
So while this product might have one shader cluster less, really the performance remains exceptionally good. The lower default base clock frequency made us wonder if the performance would crash, but once the dynamic clock aka turbo kicks in, the card easily passes the 1150 MHz again, a little trick that seems to really work out for NVIDIA.
Overclocking, the two 6-pin PEG power connectors indicates that the power circuitry can handle less tweaking wise. The Palit Jetstream edition however already comes factory overclocked. Still another +50 MHz was easily added to the baseclock and then the Dynamic Clock Adjustment technology kicks in, resulting in 1200+ MHz on the core clock where applicable. The 9500 3DMark 11 P score is reached. We had hoped to get a little higher though, a +100 MHz on top of the factory overclock would have been really nice.
The peak heat levels can close in towards 72 Degrees C. That's perfectly fine and within the thermal design of the card. But we prefer cards under load to remain under 70 Degrees C, albeit that is a bit of a personal preference.
The noise levels -- they are okay but as stated you can hear a low hum coming from the cooler. In desktop and idle mode you will not hear the card, it really is silent. Under hefty gaming load however you will be able to hear the product. We rated the card at 42~43 DBa (including background noise). That however is a normal noise level, which means you can hear the card, but not at annoying levels or anything like that.
So with all that said it's time to wrap up the review and dive into the conclusion. We definitely like the Palit GeForce GTX 670 JetStream, we stated it in the GTX 680 review already; it is quite amazing what NVIDIA is able to do with the GK104 which we still think was intended to be the mid-range chip.
Cutting away one shader cluster (SMX) and lowering the core GPU clock frequency remains a bit of a paradox as the card is still very fast. The tests have shown it, it's at best 10% away from the GTX 680 so that makes it a really good position to be in.
Palit has an offering for you that comes factory overclocked, it is boosting the GPU close to 1200 MHz already making the product perform dangerously close towards GTX 680 performance. The overall design is nice, we have respect for NVIDIA's partners that go the extra mile with a custom design PCB. The JetStream cooler does its job sufficiently, in idle you will not hear the card, under stress however you can hear it (but it's nothing dramatic or anything).
If you can find the Palit GeForce GTX 670 Jet Stream at roughly 399 USD then we can wholeheartedly recommend it. Mind you that the cooling solution is big. Some people have a problem with that, others don't care of course. But yeah, it offers a lot of performance in it's default setup and most of the tweaking has been done for you. Definitely a product worth our recommendation.
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