ASUS GeForce GTS 450 TOP 1GB
Nvidia really made a splash with the GeForce GTX 460 not long ago, and it seems they’ve continued that trend here with the GTS 450 in the mainstream market segment. Nvidia has stated the target competition is the Radeon 5750 and from what we’ve seen, the GTS 450 makes quick work of the 5750, easily beating it across the board.
What’s even more interesting is that this factory overclocked ASUS GTS 450 TOP not only decimates the 5750, but it even handily beats the 5770 as well. Strapping on an excellent custom heatsink and giving this card voltage tweaking ability with some amazing overclocking headroom, this GTS 450 TOP is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. With an unassuming form, this ASUS card utterly dominates the mainstream segment, even coming within spitting distance of the Radeon 5830 when overclocked.
The MSRP for the reference GeForce GTS 450 is $130, with the ASUS TOP version set to hit the shelves at only $10 more at $140 USD. That is an outstanding value, especially when the average price for the Radeon 5770 is at least $20. And make no mistake, this is a hard launch. We received several manufacturer offers for card reviews, but only two arrived on time to meet the embargo date. Needless to say, Nvidia partners are pining to get these cards out the door.
So what we have here is a card that comes with a strong factory overclock and excellent remaining overclocking headroom, that runs cool and quiet, comes with CUDA and PhysX capabilities, and beats the competition without breaking a sweat. Essentially the GTS 450 is priced to compete with the 5750 but crushes it in every facet, and instead can beat a Radeon that’s one model higher up on the performance scale. Regardless if you’re an Nvidia or ATI fan, that is an extremely impressive product no matter how you look at it.
The story gets better when manufacturers like ASUS venture beyond the reference design; special things can happen with a card like that’s already impressive. The ASUS GTS 450 TOP is a card that does just that, going that extra mile by offering enthusiasts voltage tweaking abilities in their Smart Doctor software, available exclusively to this ASUS card. Not only that, but the Direct CU heatsink is killer in terms of keeping temperatures impressively cool, and therefore resulting in lower fan speeds and quieter operation.
So is there a downside to all of this? We can’t really find one if there is. The performance is excellent, the overclocking headroom is fantastic, the temperatures are great, the non-reference VRM design provides improved power deliver, the power connector is thankfully side-mounted, and the price hits a very attractive place in the market. And to go outside the box for a minute, if you’ve got a hefty budget to work with, a 450 GTS would make a perfect PhysX card with two 480’s in SLI.
The ASUS GeForce GTS 450 TOP 1GB may not have the punch of the flagship Nvidia cards that tend to get most of the buzz in the gaming community, but the target mainstream market is a lucrative one. Things were off to a rocky start with the Fermi launch but got back on track with the GTX 460, and now Nvidia appears to be in the driver’s seat here with the GTS 450. It may have taken a little while, but there’s an old saying that says it doesn’t matter where you start, it’s where you finish that counts. And the ASUS GTS 450 TOP seems to take that thought to the mainstream with a knockout punch for gamers on a modest budget.
ASUS GeForce GTS 450 TOP 1GB