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Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 GeForce GTX 260 Videocard Review

Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 GeForce GTX 260 Videocard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: The Geforce GX 260 core on Sparkle's videocard is clocked at the default speed of 576MHz, the shaders hum away at 1242MHz, while the GDDR3 memory runs at an even 999MHz.
 81% Rating:   
Filed under: Video Cards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Sparkle May 26 2009   Julian Apong  
Home > Reviews > Video Cards > Sparkle GTX260 Core 216

Videocard Power Consumption Measurements

Here's how the Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 videocard stacks up in real life against a couple different cards. PCSTATS measures total system power draw and compares that in 3D loaded (max value recorded in 3DMark06) and idle states (at Windows desktop). The power supply used in each test is an A-PFC compliant PC Power and Cooling 750W model.

PCSTATS Benchmark ReportVideocard Power Consumption (Total System Power Draw)
Idle at Desktop Watts Ranking
Palit HD4870 X2 2GB 177
Asus EAH3870 X2 1GB TOP/G/3DHTI/1G/A 153
Asus EAH3870 X2 1GB TOP/G/3DHTI/1G/A (Crossfire) 222
MSI R3870X2-T2D1G-OC 165
Asus EAH4890 HTDI/1GD5/A 137
Asus EAH4850 HTDI/512M 120
MSI R4830 T2D512-OC (Radeon 4830) 108
Gigabyte GV-R477D5-512HB 135
Gigabyte GV-R477D5-512HB Crossfire 180
Asus EAH4770 HTDI/512MD5/A 101
Diamond Viper Radeon HD 2900XT CrossFire 195
Asus EAX1900XTX 2DHTV/512M/A 160
Asus EAX1950PRO/HTDP/256M/A 150
Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 140
ASUS ENGTS250 DK 120
ASUS ENGTS250 DK in SLI 170
Gigabyte GV-N96TSL-1GI 96
nVidia Geforce 9600GTs in SLI 166
Asus EN9600GT Top/HTDI/512M 152
Palit Geforce 9600GT 512 151
MSI NX8800GTX-T2D768E 196
MSI NX7950GX2-T2D1GE 183
MSI NX7900GTX-T2D512E 165
Gigabyte GV-NX76T256D-RH 140
3D Loaded: Watts Ranking
Palit HD4870 X2 2GB 421
Asus EAH3870 X2 1GB TOP/G/3DHTI/1G/A 390
Asus EAH3870 X2 1GB TOP/G/3DHTI/1G/A (Crossfire) 610
MSI R3870X2-T2D1G-OC 330
Asus EAH4890 HTDI/1GD5/A 225
Asus EAH4850 HTDI/512M 202
MSI R4830 T2D512-OC (Radeon 4830) 177
Gigabyte GV-R477D5-512HB 186
Gigabyte GV-R477D5-512HB Crossfire 279
Asus EAH4770 HTDI/512MD5/A 153
Diamond Viper Radeon HD 2900XT CrossFire 549
Asus EAX1900XTX 2DHTV/512M/A 333
Asus EAX1950PRO/HTDP/256M/A 252
Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 262
ASUS ENGTS250 DK 214
ASUS ENGTS250 DK in SLI 316
Gigabyte GV-N96TSL-1GI 160
nVidia Geforce 9600GTs in SLI 313
Asus EN9600GT Top/HTDI/512M 220
Palit Geforce 9600GT 512 221
MSI NX8800GTX-T2D768E 345
MSI NX7950GX2-T2D1GE 315
MSI NX7900GTX-T2D512E 277
Gigabyte GV-NX76T256D-RH 213

The computer system with the Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 videocard posts a fairly moderate idle power draw of 140Watts - given the size of this Geforce GTX260 graphics card, and the dual PCI Express power connectors running into it, we would have expected a significantly higher power load. nVidia has done good work to ensure minimal power draw when the system is sitting on the desktop and the GPU isn't being taxed.

When the computer is stressed with 3DMark 06, power draw for the Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 videocard increases 110W, bringing the total power consumption a relatively average 262Watts. Not bad at all, particularly when compared to the power sucking MSI Geforce 8800GTX videocard of just a few years ago topped out at 345W!

The majority of spikes in the above power draw chart indicate dual videocard SLI or Crossfire test situations, modern videocards have become a lot more power efficient thanks largely to die shrinks and optimization. The Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 videocard itself will require two 6-pin auxiliary SLI power connectors, but when stressed the total power draw doesn't break 300Watts.

Heat and Noise Observations

The Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 videocard is clad in a very substantial skived aluminum heatsink, hidden behind a white plastic fan shroud that directs airflow along the cards length. A single squirrel cage fan draws air in at the back of the card and directs it across the heatsink before it's exhausted at the I/O side back into the case. For some reason Sparkle have kept to a single slot IO bracket, even though the GTX260 videocard is indeed two slots wide.

Given the amount of heat produced by a videocard GPU under load, we would have preferred to have seen the Sparkle GTX260 videocard equipped with a vented IO slot so hot air is exhausted outside of the PC chassis.

Because hot air isn't vented out through the card's I/O panel out of the PC case, that can mean that while the videocard is kept cool, the overall ambient temperature of other components inside the computer case will rise. It's a good idea to ensure your PC case has decent airflow to keep overall fan noise down to a low level... the hotter things get the faster fans need to spin. At full fan speed the Sparkle GTX260 doesn't make too much noise thankfully.

Along with the massive slab of Geforce GTX260 GPU, the single-piece skived aluminum heatsink makes contact with each one of the BGA DRAM modules via small squares of soft thermal gap filler. Next up PCSTATS overclocks the Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 videocard!

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Contents of Article: Sparkle GTX260 Core 216
 Pg 1.  Sparkle GTX260 Core 216 GeForce GTX 260 Videocard Review
 Pg 2.  nVidia Geforce GTX260 and the GT200 GPU
 Pg 3.  — Videocard Power Consumption Measurements
 Pg 4.  Overclocking a Geforce GTX260 with nVidia nTune
 Pg 5.  Videocard Benchmarks: 3DMark06
 Pg 6.  DX10 Videocard Benchmarks: 3DMark Vantage, STALKER, Crysis
 Pg 7.  DX10 Videocard Benchmarks: Call of Juarez
 Pg 8.  DX10 Videocard Benchmarks: Lost Planet
 Pg 9.  Videocard Benchmarks: FEAR
 Pg 10.  AA/AF Videocard Benchmarks: FEAR AA/AF
 Pg 11.  AA/AF Videocard Benchmarks: FarCry 2, Crysis
 Pg 12.  Radeon or Geforce GTX260 - Who's the better GPU?

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