GeForce GTX 465 SLI review

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Setup | Noise | Power consumption | Heat levels

Hardware installation

Installation of both products is really easy. Once the card is installed and seated into the PC we connect the 6-pin a power connectors to the graphics card.

GeForce GTX 465 SLI

And yes... do make sure your power supply is compatible:

  • GeForce GTX 465 needs two 6-pin PEG connectors
  • GeForce GTX 470 needs two 6-pin PEG connectors
  • GeForce GTX 480 needs one 6-pin PEG and one 8-pin PEG connector

Preferably the PEG headers come directly from the power supply and are not converted from the Molex peripheral connectors.

You can now turn on your PC, boot into Windows, install the latest NVIDIA Forceware driver and after a reboot, all should be working. No further configuration is required or needed.

Here is Guru3D's power supply recommendation:

GeForce GTX 465

  • On your average system the card requires you to have a 500 Watt power supply unit.

GeForce GTX 400 in SLI

  • A second card requires you to add another ~150 Watts. You need a 650 Watt power supply unit.

For each other card (3-way SLI) that you add, just add another 150 Watts as a safety margin.

There are many good PSUs out there, please do have a look at our many PSU reviews as we have loads of recommended PSUs for you to check out in there. What would happen if your PSU can't cope with the load?:

  • bad 3D performance
  • crashing games
  • spontaneous reset or imminent shutdown of the PC
  • freezing during gameplay
  • PSU overload can cause it to break down

The graphics card cooler performance examined

Let's have a look at the temperatures this custom cooler offers.

GeForce GTX 465 SLIprimary temperatures and clocks during heavy stress

We now fire off a hefty shader application at the GPU and start monitoring temperature behavior as it would be when you are gaming intensely and continuously, we literally stress the GPUs 100% here as you can see in the graph.

We measured at a room temperature of 21 degrees Celsius. Now we report at two stages the GPU(s) in IDLE and under stress. Here's what we get returned:

GeForce GTX 465 45 79

Now the final GTX boards have gotten a new tweaked BIOS and that definitely shows.

Graphics card (reference) Load TEMP C
GeForce GT 240 512MB 47
Radeon HD 5570 1024MB 60
HIS 5850 iCooler Turbo 61
GBT R5870 SOC 68
Radeon HD 5670 512MB 70
GeForce GTS 250 1GB 72
Radeon HD 5750 1024MB 73
Radeon HD 5870 1024MB 75
Radeon HD 5850 1024MB 77
Radeon HD 5830 1024MB 78
GeForce GTX 465 1024MB 79
GeForce GTX 275 896MB 82
Radeon HD 5970 2048MB 83
GeForce GTX 285  83
GeForce GTX 260 SP216 84
GeForce GTX 480 nw BIOS 88
GeForce GTX 470 94
GeForce GTX 480 reference 95

As you can see the GTX 465 remains within acceptable heat levels. On SLI that will change on one card due to airflow though, add another 10 Degrees C once under massive stress.


Noise Levels coming from the graphics card

When graphics cards produce a lot of heat, usually that heat needs to be transported away from the hot core as fast as possible. Often you'll see massive active fan solutions that can indeed get rid of the heat, yet all the fans these days make the PC a noisy son of a gun. I'm doing a little try out today with noise monitoring, so basically the test we do is extremely subjective. We bought a certified dBA meter and will start measuring how many dBA originate from the PC. Why is this subjective you ask? Well, there is always noise in the background, from the streets, from the HD, PSU fan etc etc, so this is by a mile or two an imprecise measurement. You could only achieve objective measurement in a sound test chamber.

The human hearing system has different sensitivities at different frequencies. This means that the perception of noise is not at all equal at every frequency. Noise with significant measured levels (in dB) at high or low frequencies will not be as annoying as it would be when its energy is concentrated in the middle frequencies. In other words, the measured noise levels in dB will not reflect the actual human perception of the loudness of the noise. That's why we measure the dBA level. A specific circuit is added to the sound level meter to correct its reading in regard to this concept. This reading is the noise level in dBA. The letter A is added to indicate the correction that was made in the measurement. Frequencies below 1kHz and above 6kHz are attenuated, whereas frequencies between 1kHz and 6kHz are amplified by the A weighting.

Jet takeoff (200 feet) 120 dBA  
Construction Site 110 dBA  Intolerable
Shout (5 feet) 100 dBA  
Heavy truck (50 feet)  90 dBA  Very noisy
Urban street  80 dBA  
Automobile interior  70 dBA  Noisy
Normal conversation (3 feet)  60 dBA  
Office, classroom  50 dBA  Moderate
Living room  40 dBA  
Bedroom at night  30 dBA  Quiet
Broadcast studio  20 dBA  
Rustling leaves  10 dBA  Barely audible

For each dBA test we close the PC/chassis and move the dBA gun 75 cm away from the PC. Roughly the same proximity you'll have a PC in a real-world situation.

Noise Level


Radeon HD 5670 512MB 40Radeon HD 5770 1024MB 41GeForce GTX 275 41Radeon HD 5830 1024MB 42GeForce GTX 465 42GeForce GTS 250 42Radeon 5870 42GeForce GTX 285  43Radeon HD 5970 2048MB 44GeForce GTX 470 46GeForce GTX 480 47

The idle noise levels coming from the card are normal as well, in idle you will hear the card as we measured 38 dBA, which is right below the threshold of noise coming from that PC itself.

Once the GPU starts to heat up the fan RPM will go up as well but the card does not become noisy. We measured roughly 42 dBA under heavy GPU stress. So that makes the card not silent but not noisy either... you can hear it in the background noise. So that definitely is looking much better.

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