NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450 Affordable DX11 GPU

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How We Configured Our Test Systems: We tested the graphics cards in this article on a Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD5 motherboard powered by a Core i7 965 quad-core processor and 6GB of OCZ DDR3-1333 RAM. The first thing we did when configuring the test system was enter the system BIOS and set all values to their "optimized" or "high performance" default settings. Then we manually configured the memory timings and disabled any integrated peripherals that wouldn't be put to use. The hard drive was then formatted, and Windows 7 Ultimate x64 was installed. When the installation was complete we fully updated the OS and installed the latest hotfixes, along with the necessary drivers and applications.

HotHardware's Test Systems
Core i7 Powered

Hardware Used:
Core i7 965 (3.2GHz)

Gigabyte EX58-UD5 (X58 Express)

Radeon HD 5550
Radeon HD 5570
Radeon HD 5770
GeForce GTX 460
GeForce GTS 450
EVGA GeForce GTS 450 FTW

6GB OCZ DDR3-1333
Western Digital Raptor 150GB
Integrated Audio
Integrated Network

Relevant Software:
Windows 7 Ultimate x64
DirectX June 2010 Redist
ATI Catalyst v10.7 / 10.8a
NVIDIA GeForce Drivers 260.520

Benchmarks Used:

Unigine Heaven v2.1
3DMark Vantage v1.0.1
FarCry 2
Just Cause 2
Alien vs. Predator
Left 4 Dead 2*
Enemy Territory: Quake Wars v1.5*

* - Custom benchmark

Unigine Heaven v2.1 Benchmark
Synthetic DirectX 11 Gaming

Unigine Heaven

The Unigine Heaven Benchmark v2.0 is built around the Unigine game engine. Unigine is a cross-platform real-time 3D engine, with support for DirectX 9, DirectX 10, DirectX 11 and OpenGL. The Heaven benchmark--when run in DX11 mode--also makes comprehensive use of tessellation technology and advanced SSAO (screen-space ambient occlusion), and it also features volumetric cumulonimbus clouds generated by a physically accurate algorithm and a dynamic sky with light scattering. Due to the fact that we tested Heaven in DX11 mode, no NVIDIA GT200 series cards are represented in the graph below.

We have tested a reference GeForce GTS 450 alongside both of the overclocked retail editions. As you can see, even the reference clocked GeForce GTS 450 manages to outpace the Radeon HD 5770 here; the overclocked editions from EVGA and Asus simply extend the lead.

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I'd like to see a pair of these in SLI face off against a GTX 480.

If they are comparable... for $260 those 450s would be a STEAL!



To Clarify... a pair of those for $260 :-P

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Its performance is somewhere in between a 5750 and a 5770. What's surprising though is this actually gets beaten by a GTS 250 in some games namely Modern Warfare 2 and Crysis. It could have something to do with the drivers and the game engines though. The redeeming factor for these cards is its scaling in SLI. Much like the GTX 460, performance almost doubles with two cards.

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This card shines in what I think the only game that matters the most right now which is Star Craft 2.  It absolutely destroys its ATI counterpart in this game.  On older games though, its pretty much on par with the 5750.

I don't know why people still run benchmarks on Crysis.  IMO it's unoptimized garbage that nobody plays. Even Crysis Warhead which was supposed to be "optimized" is horrible, I hate seeing my video card only use 30-50% gpu usage everytime I play, compared to all real "heavy" games like BFBC2 and Far Cry 2  where I can see the GPU usage max out efficiently.

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I totally agree with you crow but the game has become sort of a poster child for how to crush a graphics card based on that inefficiency alone. Inevitably, when we post a review without it, we get folks chiming in with that stupid line "but can it run...?" Or they flat out ask us to run it and are genuinely interested in it as a frame of reference. That said, we plan to kill it from our benchmark suite VERY soon.

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Great news! Hopefully not replaced by Crysis 2. lol unless Crysis 2 turns out to be really awesome (which it probably will be).

Yeah I don't really blame the reviewers so much, moreso people in the tech community that still look at it as THE benchmark (the same kind of people who are only interested in numbers but overlook the context of the numbers and the review most of the time).


Wow, the Just Cause 2 performance is great! The overclocked versions actually beat the 5770.  I was expecting them to clean the ATI cards in DX11 games for sure but it's nice to see just how this thing performs in a DX9/10 game.


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lol when we on HH say "but can it run...?" we are just joking, Most of us that is... :P

So you guys going to have a review on this one right? Would be looking forward to seeing how it will compare with the few higher cards and in SLI.

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Umm.. Inspect, click one of the images of the cards above. :)

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And for the folders out there this card can keep up with a GTX 460 when overclocked.

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Umm.. Inspect, click one of the images of the cards above. :)

O.o, lol change in style i see xD, im just use to clicking word links -.-.

Thanks for the heads up :D

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These cards OC quite well. This seems to be the beginning of a slap down by NVIDIA across the board,........

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