When Kepler first launch with the GTX 680, it was revolutionary in many regards. The GTX 670 continued those innovations forward, still maintaining excellent performance but coming with a lower price tag. And now the GTX 660 Ti takes Kepler into more performance-oriented “mainstream” territory, hitting the $300 price range. Perhaps the most remarkable thing about this new card is a racehorse under the hood, nearly as fast as the GTX 670, which isn’t surprising given its vast similarities. But the 660 Ti costs quite a bit less; in fact, the value here is so good that we’d recommend the 660 Ti over the 670 from here on out.
What even more interesting is that the GTX 660 Ti should be positioned against the Radeon 7950, but as we saw during testing, not only did this new Kepler card trounce the AMD counterpart, it also beat the flagship 7970 in many instances as well. AMD must be pretty nervous at this point, and we suspect consumers will be the beneficiaries with likely price adjustments in the near future.
In terms of innovation, the Kepler lineup features Adaptive V-Sync, FXAA improvements and performance, and multi-screen Surround support. But arguably the most ground-breaking is GPU Boost. GPU Boost, in our opinion, is nothing short of revolutionary. The concept isn’t entirely new though, as Intel’s Sandy Bridge Turbo was the real innovator, but Nvidia appears to have taken the same approach with GPUs as Intel has been with CPUs. It’s really a new way of thinking, continually monitoring and dynamically adjusting the card’s processes to provide optimal performance. And not simply gaming performance; power consumption, temperatures, and loads are all monitored and adjusted steadily for peak efficiency. Suffice it to say, we’re huge fans of GPU Boost.
Seeing the new Base Clock and Boost Clock is certainly like deja vu for overclocking enthusiasts, and the “free” turbo boost can really be seen as a value-added performance feature that is provided out of the box. In that sense, “overclocked” cards like this MSI GTX 660 Ti Power Edition are unquestionably a great deal, as this card is set to retail for $310, essentially giving you great cooling, low noise, and improved power design and components for only $10 more than the reference Nvidia card. Factor in the card is almost as fast as a GTX 670, and on par or better than a Radeon 7970 in many instances, and we’re left with a card that is simply outstanding.
We continue to be impressed by Nvidia’s Kepler products, and the GTX 660 Ti is an unassuming performance monster, at a price point that we think gamers can really latch onto. And MSI has done an excellent job with this particular card, offering consumers plenty of smart and value-added features for a very small price premium. Another big winner here.
MSI GTX 660 Ti Power Edition