Gigabyte released a killer card man, it is just gorgeous when it comes to the factory overclocked performance versus silence it offers. I really am impressed how well the WindForce X3 450 Watt model performs. Now, it is kind of amazing what a little competition can do. Honestly I am not certain that Nvidia would have released this card if AMD didn't release the 290/290X cards. The end result is a graphics card that is a notch faster then the GeForce GTX Titan for far less money. Speaking about money, the suggested retail price of the GeForce GTX 780 Ti is set at 699 USD. In the EU based on VAT differences that would boil down to roughly 650 EUR. And sure,a lot of money, but considering the Titan still sells in the 800~900 EUR range this product actually makes sense. The biggest differences in-between the Titan and the GTX 780 Ti are twofold, obviously 3GB graphics memory will save some cost for NVIDIA. That said, with Ultra HD gaming becoming a big thing we do feel that cards of this caliber should have gotten 4 GB of memory at the last. Even with BF4 in UHD / Ultra 4xMSAA we already are filling that framebuffer close to 3GB. Future games will get UHD texture packs and I forsee that 3GB utilization will be breached. The second difference in-between Titan and GTX 780 Ti is Double precision. Titan will remain the product to get if you are computing a lot, you get full DP on it whilst the GTX 780 and 780 Ti will run DP in a 1:24 ratio. But that's not a troublesome factor for gaming whatsoever though.
So the GeForce GTX 780 Ti all by itself in its reference design is already sexy, this Gigabyte WindForce 3x OC edition however isjust awseome. We had a great time testing this graphics card and quite honestly I was surprised to see that the factory overclock made that much of a difference for this virtually silent card.
Gigabyte applied their WindForce 3x - 450 Watt revision cooling solution. This revision is a slim dual-slot design and I think it just looks great in its all black design, the three subtle and silent fans, yeah it's a good looking package alright. Great looking and very sturdy I must state as well, there is a metal plate at the top of the card so it can not bend when it hangs horizontally inside the chassis.
Cooling & Noise Levels
The NVIDIA reference coolers are great, but they follow the temperature target of 80 degrees C. With the WindForce 3x cooler the GPU will get 450W of cooling power thrown at it. As a result the temperature target might remain 80 degrees C, but we have never seen the card pass 75 Degrees. And I do want to remind you here that the card is factory clocked at 1020 MHz on the core with all the 2880 Shader processors activated. An added benefit of that is that the dynamic clock frequency will go higher up to the point it reached its power target. So this is why the card is so close and sometimes a small notch faster then the GTX Titan. And if you wonder about noise ... what noise ? You can't hear this card.
Not bad, the card is still rated at as having a 250 Watt TDP, we measure that to be a little higher though, roughly 260 to 265 Watts (under full stress). But at this performance level, that is absolutely okay. That 250 Watt TDP also will make running multi-GPU solutions a bit more easy. With two card we think an 800 Watt PSU would be sufficient. So while it's not great to have a GPU sucking up 250 Watt it could have been a lot worse, really. If you look at the dual-GPU based ARES II for example, that card alone draws 500 Watt / 250 Watt per GPU. So, perspective is the word I like you to keep in mind.
GeForce GTX 780 Ti in most scenarios will be 5 to 10% faster than the GTX Titan, comparing towards GTX 680 it seems 40% faster. Drivers wise we can't complain at all, we did not stumble into any issues. And with a single GPU there's no micro-stuttering (if that ever bothered you) and no multi-GPU driver issues to fight off. Performance wise really there's not one game that won't run seriously good at the very best image quality settings. Gaming you must do with a nice 30" monitor of course, at 2560x1440/1600. I mean Battlefield 4 at Ultra quality is still oozing out 65+ FPS there. Or what about Hitman Absolution with 65+ FPS at 2560x1440 High quality and 2xMSAA? At these resolutions the GeForce GTX 780 Ti offers just a phenomenal gaming experience with image quality that you can only see on a PC.
The card is already clocked for you at 1020 MHz and boosting to 1085 MHz. This GPU can take 1150 MHz fairly easily really, and at that stage you added another 10% performance already. Our tweak made the GPU run at 1100-1150 MHz whilst boosting to nearly 1250 Mhz (depending on temperature, power draw and load). For a 7.1 Billion transistor en-counting product that is just amazing stuff really. Now we have not applied any voltage tweaking at this stage, this 2880 Shader processor card at a boost frequency of 1200~1250 MHz this way only consumes 15 Watts more with a tweak don this way, nice huh. With voltage tweaking we have no doubt you'll pass the 1300 Mhz marker.
The GeForce GTX 780 Ti is a powerhouse of technology. Silky smooth and fluid framerates is what you'll get thanks to the tremendous horsepower at hand. It does so while hardly making any noise and with dynamically adjustable temperatures you can decide yourself how hot your GPU may run. The card is a severe chunk faster compared to the GeForce GTX 680 and the Radeon HD 7970 GHz edition. Direct competition is of course the R9 290X from AMD, up-to 2560x1440 the GTX 780 Ti, mostly wins. At Ultra HD levels the cards get closer to each other though. The MSRP pricing for the GeForce GTX 780 Ti is EUR 579.00 excl. VAT (US $699 incl. VAT), meaning roughly 650 EUR incl VAT in the EU.
If you choose the Gigabyte GTX 780 Ti Windforce 3X OC edition, then you are in for a real treat. It's drop-dead silent and runs well over Titan like performance. Next to that there still remains to be room left for tweaking. Overall the product is just VERY impressive and has great looks. As such we reward the Gigabyte GTX 780 Ti Windforce 3X OC edition with our top pick award, well deserved. What a great combination and silence, performance and looks. Well done Gigabyte ! Once it is available in the stores then please be careful, there will be a normal and an OC edition, our sample is the GV-N78TOC-3GD SKU.
If you are intersted, we have a GeForce GTX 780 Ti SLI article as well, read that over here.