NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450 Affordable DX11 GPU - HotHardware

NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450 Affordable DX11 GPU

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NVIDIA may have had to navigate a tumultuous path on their way to releasing the company’s first DirectX 11 desktop GPU, the GF100-based GeForce GTX 480, though they seem to be firing on all cylinders at this point. In the last 5 or so months since the GeForce GTX 480 arrived, NVIDIA has released—or will imminently release—a slew of other new DX11-class GPUs, targeted at markets ranging from low-power thin-and-light notebooks to mid-range desktop gaming systems. And the GTX 480 remains the company’s flagship desktop product. NVIDIA has also optimized their software and drivers to wring significantly more performance from their newest GPUs. Things seem to be looking up.

The most recent NVIDIA GPU released for the desktop market, the GeForce GTX 460, proved to be an excellent performer for the money. In the conclusion of our GTX 460 coverage, we stated, “The GeForce GTX 460 is simply one of the most appealing DirectX 11-class graphics cards out there. They're affordably priced, perform very well, they're a reasonable size and quiet”. Since the GeForce GTX 460 hit the scene a couple of months ago, prices on the cards have dropped somewhat, making them even more attractive. Even with the success of the GTX 460 though, NVIDIA still doesn’t have a sub-$180 DX11 graphics card for the desktop market, and it’s at the more affordable price points that the vast majority of graphics cards are sold.

NVIDIA plans to change that today with the release of the new GeForce GTS 450. As the GTS moniker denotes, the GeForce GTS 450 is targeted at the mainstream market. And with a $129 (give or take) price tag it is certainly more affordable than any other DX11-class GPU. Whether or not it’s worth the asking price remains to be seen, however. So let’s dig in and find out what the new GeForce GTS 450 is made of and if it deserves a place in your next system.


Asus and EVGA Overclocked GeForce GTS 450 Cards

NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450
Specifications & Features



  
The NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450 GPU, Front and Back


Before we show you the actual cards, let’s take a look at the GPU powering the GeForce GTS 450. The chip at the heart of these new cards is codenamed the GF106. It is a new GPU, although it is based on NVIDIA’s Fermi architecture, like the other members of the GeForce GTX/GTS/GT 400 series. The chip is comprised of 1.17 billion transistors and it is manufactured using TSMC’s 40nm process.

Within the chip, as it is configured on the GeForce GTS 450, there is a single Graphics Processing Cluster, with 4 Streaming Multiprocessor segments consisting of 48 CUDA cores.  There are 192 CUDA cores in total. There are also 32 texture units and 16 ROPs. GeForce GTS 450 cards also feature a 128-bit memory interface. We should point out, however, that the GF106, as it is implemented on the GeForce GTS 450, isn’t fully functional.

The GF106 diagram above depicts the full GF106 chip architecture that includes one GPC, four SMs, three ROP partitions, and three 64-bit memory interfaces. The GTS 450 GPU is a version of the GF106 chip, but with only two ROP partitions and two memory interface partitions enabled.

NVIDIA goes on to explain, “Our goal with the retail version of GTS 450 is to design the best price/performance product at an aggressive MSRP while offering the highly valued 1GB memory size. The 128-bit memory configuration provides the best price/performance for these design goals.”

Now let's look at the hardware side of things.

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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!

 

*edit*

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).

EDIT:

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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Dave_HH:

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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