The simple fact right up front here is that the GTX 780 improves upon its predecessors in nearly every regard, from performance and features, to temperatures versus power appoach. On the surface it may not seem significantly different; after all, the GeForce GTX 780 doesn’t look too dissimilar from the Titan. In truth, the GeForce GTX 780 is more evolutionary than revolutionary, and that’s not a bad thing.
The GTX 780 is probably best viewed as more of a refinement of Titan rather than direct successor to the 680, designed as something more accessible to the enthusiasts and gamers that aren’t well-heeled enough to afford the absurdly-priced Titan. That said, the performance here is certainly outstanding, as the GTX 780 OC Windforce overwhelms the competition, utterly embarassing the Radeon 7970. Frankly, there is no competition in fact; it’s not even close.
GPU Boost 2.0 also continues its evolutionary journey, now smartly focusing more on temperatures than power envelope. All but the most diehard overclockers out there will appreciate this approach, as lower temperatures and noise levels are the key to most gaming rigs, not benching stations. And on that note, the Gigabyte GTX 780 OC Windforce comes with an extremely aggressive overclock out of the box. There’s also more left in the tank for manual tweaking, but you’ll note dimishing returns; there simply isn’t as much left over to Boost.
So then there’s the little matter of price. What does all this horsepower and innovation cost? $679, which is about a $30 premium over the reference card. That is a bit more than we had hoped, but it’s reasonable against the backdrop of Titan’s current price. If you also look at the GTX 680’s launch price of $499 and increase that by 35% (equivalent to the average performance increase on the GTX 780 OC), you get nearly $679. That’s right on the bullseye, so in that perspective, it makes perfect sense; you get exactly what you pay for.
This certainly puts AMD in a bit of a tough spot because there is nothing in their product lineup that can come close to the GTX 780 OC. Nvidia rules the roost for performance, but not only the top spot, as their lead extends down the ladder as well, relegating AMD fans to looking for “gaming value” in lower price points. At least until Q3 when we expect rumors of new AMD series starting to shape up.
In the meantime, if you want a top graphics card and have the budget to support the best, you really can’t go wrong with the Gigabyte GTX 780 OC Windforce. It’s a tour de force, showcasing a excellent combination of strong gaming performance, great cooling, and impressive overclocking.
Gigabyte GTX 780 OC Windforce