ZOTAC GTX480 Review
Test Setup, Overclocking and Temperatures
Motherboard : ASUS Rampage II Extreme
CPU : Intel i7 920 @ 3.6GHz
RAM : 6GB Corsair Platinum @1333mhz
PSU : OCZ 1000w Gold PSU
HDD : 1TB Samsung Spinpoint F1
Monitor : Samsung 2433 24" @ 1920x1200
OS : Windows 7 Ultimate 64
GPU : Zotac GTX480 using 197.41 WHQL.
Reference HD5870 and HD5970 using Catalyst 10.3
Here came the really tight test, and something that actually caused us to depart from our standard testing procedure. As you'll see below we actually had to run our fans at 100% for testing which we will definitely get to in the conclusion.
Nobody knows for sure what nVidia planned to get out of the Fermi GTX480 core, but clearly the card has been detuned quite a bit because with maximised fans we got a huge boost in GPU and shader speeds along with the heat and performance gains we'd expect.
Normally for the purposes of fairness we run all our benchmarks and overclocking tests at 50% fans. Unfortunately nVidias reference cooler is so hopeless that within two minutes the card shut itself down, having passed 110°C. 60% fans had the same effect and it wasn't until we pushed into the deafening realm of 70% that our stock card was capable of running our tests.
We'd be very VERY dubious about running at anything under than 80% though and this is largely a fault of the fan which is barely an asthmatic mouse at 50% or below. Earplugs a must.
It has to be noticed that this is nothing to do with ZOTAC at all and solely the fault of nVidia and their inability to tame the GTX480.
Lets move on to the important tests... Some gaming results.