The Nvidia GeForce GTX 550 Ti is the latest in the Fermi lineup, and while it may share a similar naming scheme as the GTX 560 Ti, it does have some distinct differences, not the least of which is a considerably lower price tag. Costing about $150 for the reference and slightly more for the custom versions from board partners, this creates a very interesting scenario, as it sits alone amongst current-gen cards at this price point. There is no 6000 series AMD card that can compete, so Nvidia is breaking new ground here by offering what appears to be a very compelling product for gamers on a modest budget.
One of the interesting things about the launch of the GTX 550 Ti is there will be several models available from Nvidia partners simultaneously, and this one is from ASUS. Bringing a custom cooler and a factory overclock, along with voltage tweaking ability for even more horsepower, today is quite exciting if you’re in the market for a new graphics card that won’t break the bank.
Toss in some very impressive overclocking headroom and low temperatures, and only one question remains: what does $159 get you?
Let’s find out.
GF116 and Specifications
The GTX 550 Ti can probably be viewed as the successor to the GTS 450, at least in terms of target market and pricing. As a result, the closest competitor, at least on the AMD side of the equation in terms of pricing, is probably the Radeon 5770. However, as a current-gen card, the GTX 550 Ti really stands alone in the market at the $149 price point.
Though the GTX 550 Ti is lower on the performance ladder than the 560 Ti, one obvious similarity that remains is the naming convention. Nvidia has eschewed the previous naming schemes found in the flagship models and continues to keep the “Ti” suffix to the card’s name. It seems to make some sense now, as the “Ti” moniker quickly identifies a card as more “value-oriented” in terms of pricing.
The GTX 550 Ti continues to bring the GeForce 500 series forward, and this time down into the mainstream performance market. With an MSRP of $149 for the reference design, the price is lower than any other current-gen card on the market, both from Nvidia and AMD. So Nvidia is breaking new ground here, going after a potentially lucrative market with no real competitor to speak of with the GTX 550 Ti.
Below is a chart that shows the specifications in the current GeForce GTX lineup as things stand from Nvidia:
The GTX 550 Ti’s GF116 chip drops some horsepower in order to achieve such an impressively low price tag. First, the number of CUDA cores is down to 192 and 24 ROPs. The memory bus is 192 bit as well. However, the core speed gets a bit of a boost from what we’ve seen to 900MHz, retains 1GB of GDDR5, and a big reduction in the TDP down to 116W on a single 6-Pin power connector compared to the 560 Ti.
The ASUS GTX 550 Ti is undoubtedly a good choice for gaming and graphics designing or 3d rendering. For a long time, the brand has been gaining good reviews from customers. And personally, I found this graphics card an excellent choice for my PC as a gamer.