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MSI GTX 660 Twin Frozr

Posted September 13, 2012 by Jake in Video Cards







Total Score


Release Date: September 13, 2012
Price at time of Review: $240


Impressively low temperatures, Low noise, Sleek aesthetics, Good mid-range performance, GPU Boost, Great value


Heavier cooler design
Respectable horsepower and excellent value for gamers on a modest budget.
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by Jake
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Meet Kepler

First off, a bit of background about Nvidia’s Kepler for those who may be living under a rock and unfamiliar. As we first saw with the original GTX 680 launch, and then again with the GTX 670 AND GTX 660 Ti, Kepler is a significant improvement in hardware technology, performance, features, and software from previous GeForce generation cards. As we’ll explore during the course of this review in further detail, these improvements are quite innovative, and really move the gaming world forward.

Built upon a revised GK104, a bit different than what we saw in the previous Kepler cards, the GeForce 660 sits a couple rungs lower on the performance ladder, with slightly lower performance and a much more affordable price tag.

In terms of particulars, the GTX 660 comes with 960 CUDA cores, whereas the 660 Ti had 1344. The memory runs at 192 Bit here, same as the 660 Ti, and the 2GB of GDDR5 memory runs at 1502MHz, again the same as the GTX 660 Ti. Despite some similar specs, we don’t expect the new 660 to run with the big dogs, mostly due to the cores, and the intended competition would be AMD’s Radeon 7850 and 7870 cards.

As for clock speeds, the MSI GTX 660 Twin Frozr comes with a 1033MHz Base Clock (core) and 1502MHz memory. The GPU Boost clock on this particular MSI card is 1098MHz, but this is the minimum you can expect to achieve. As you’ll see in our Overclocking section part of this review, there is more left in the tank. Needless to say, that’s a great boost (or “overclock”) out of the box here.

Here’s an image that shows a bit more detail on the particulars:

Kepler certainly brings performance improvements, but the 28nm manufacturing process also reduces heat output. However, perhaps the most significant improvement is that Kepler brings twice the Performance Per Watt when compared to Fermi. “Awesome” might be considered an understatement in that context. Lower power consumption appears to be a hallmark of Kepler, and that’s particularly encouraging.

Let’s talk next about a groundbreaking new technology on Kepler cards: GPU Boost.

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    I wish there was a comparison between GTX 660. GTX 660 TI and its predecessor GTX 560, GTX 560 TI. GTX 560 TI was owning its tier before the GTX 600 Series came and it was still a good competitor against the newer HD 7850 of the same price bracket. I would be nice to show how “obsolete” the older cards are to tell owners if they do need an upgrade or not.


    I share your wish. Most people aren’t interested in how old cards perform, only current ones, for the most part. But the reality is that it’s extremely difficult to test previous-generation cards, for the most part, because benchmark tests change, drivers update, and cards are generally not kept for a couple years sitting on a shelf. Occasionally it may be possible for the odd card, but rarely. Unfortunately that’s just a limitation of things.


    I don’t know how your card get that fps in 1680X1050,but my 6850 scored min 27 fps and average 36 fps with all settings to ultra with I5 2380p .something is wrong here.


    Unfortunately you don’t mention what benchmark, what sequence in that benchmark, what CPU speed, and what GPU speed you’re talking about. So it’s pretty much impossible to reasonably respond to your comments without more information.

    Regardless, are you trying to say a GTX 660 should get lower framerates than your 6850? That would be a mistake since the GTX 660 beats a 6850 without breaking a sweat.

    Something may indeed be wrong here…..perhaps you’re vastly overestimating the ability of a 6850?

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