The Palit KalmX card is a funky little d00d that outs fairly nice numbers. Obviously passive cooling comes with certain limitations, do need a chassis with a bit of airflow, even a small amount will allow this card to remain under 80 Degrees C on the GPU temperature. Now if it does reach that 80 degrees, no worries as the card will not overheat, however it will start to down-throttle. We emulated that in the temperature test that you have been able to read. If you have poor ventilation and the card sticks at 80 Degrees C under load, you'll see that Boost frequency drop from roughly 1800 towards 1500 MHz. As you have noticed the overall performance was a notch less then reference. This most was due to down-throttling of the GPU as we did not give this card any ventilation, we do test in the worst possible scenario. But hey, even then the performance remains to be very acceptable. Sure, this is entry level stuff, but they are easy to use cards alright -- just pop them in, install a driver and you're good to go. Currently pricing is off and odd though, but we'll talk about that a bit more in another paragraph. The 1080P resolution is the maximum domain of the focus for products like tested today, WQHD not so much obviously. The 4 GB of graphics memory does make a lot of sense for this product. Realistically the 1050 Ti 4GB is a bit all over the place in the benchmarks, some games behave extremely well where others just have a hard time. Performance wise I had hoped the 1050 Ti would be much closer to the AMD Radeon RX 470, but it simply isn't. It is a fun card, but is outperformed by that RX 470. A 1050 Ti should cost you 139 USD / 149 EURO as for 169 USD you can pick up that RX 470. Pricing in the EU however is very different, the product as tested today costs €159,- in the EU yet can be spotted for $139.99 in the USA though.
For a passively cooled product with a huge cooling block slapped on top of the GPU, we can't complain really. Sure it looks a little out of the ordinary, but the target demographic that purchases this product likely is not interested in how it looks. This card for example would be an excellent solution in a HTPC build that needs to be silent. While the looks always remain trivial, it is looking totally fine as far as I am concerned.
Cooling & Noise Levels
With no airflow the card runs roughly 80 Degrees C and starts to down-throttle. Give it a little ventilation in the chassis and you will be hard-pressed to see it going to that 80C degrees. The card itself is inaudible, your airflow created however will make some noise. So it is a but subjective to give this a rating. There was not any audible coil noise heard either.
GP107-A1 Pascal series GPUs are rated as having a 75 Watt TDP under full stress, our measurements show it to be a tiny bit higher in that region. Low wattage cards are hard to measure due to the fact that a PSU gets more inefficient at low power usage. But we tag the 1050 Ti at 75 Watts. Again, we do need to weigh in a little reserve here power supply efficiency wise so it might be a notch lower as well. It remains to be a very low value.
The 1050 Ti with 4 GB of graphics memory can game at 1080P. In DX12 with proper PC gaming quality settings you will run out of power pretty fast though, even at 1080P. But lower image quality a notch and you should be fine. It is a perfect little card for 1080P and the latest Battlefield 1 for example. Overall, in DX11 games we see decent enough performance. With a 4GB model you'll have more breathing space and that helps quite a bit. Obviously not everybody requires or demands 100+ FPS and many people find that 30~40 average FPS is good enough, especially with a GSYNC monitor.
Overclocking wise things are very simple. This card could run and reach a boost frequency of roughly 2000 MHz, the memory subsystem can do 8 Gbps. After these values you'll run into restrictions mostly set by Nvidia. Check out the overclock pages for more precise numbers. IF you overclock, make sure you give the card airflow to cope with heat!
We think the Palit KalmX works well, it is inaudible and performs nicely. The one thing you'll need to give it (if you play to game on it) is to give it a notch of airflow. That is easily accomplished in any modern age chassis as there already is an air intake and exhaust. The card itself is 100% inaudible which is great. Reality also dictates that 96% of the actively cooled cards available all also are passive up-to a GPU temperature of 60 Degrees C. And once you go above that threshold, on AIB card some cooling kicks in (which lately has been very silent as well). So with that in mind the KalmX seems to have a bit of a limited target demographic. However in simple boxes or a HTPC the product can rule as hey, it really doesn't make any noise. It is a fun 1080P range card that can deal with modern games. For it to become successful whoever it needs to be under the 150 euro marker, currently this specific card sells at €169,- in the EU but at a proper $139.99 in the USA. For the EU it is a notch too high to make sense as the competition RX 470 is merely a few tenners way and will offer more value for money, we spotted the HIS RX 470 for example at € 195,- The product and build itself we cannot complain about as Palit did a good job with the 1050 Ti. The performance is however a notch under reference here and there, likely due to throttling. It is what it is though and not something huge enough to be a concern for an otherwise totally stable and enjoyable product. The Palit GeForce GTX 1050 Ti KalmX is very interesting little product that you easily add-in a simple PC. If you can spot them for the right price, these cards can be little gems for your entry level gaming purposes. Remember, you only need a tiny bit of airflow inside your PC to prevent the GPU from throttling down. Other than that it's both thumbs up for the KalmX.