Meet The GeForce GTX 670

Because of the relatively low power consumption of GK104 relative to past high-end NVIDIA GPUs, NVIDIA has developed a penchant for small cards. While the GTX 680 was a rather standard 10” long, NVIDIA also managed to cram the GTX 690 into the same amount of space. Meanwhile the GTX 670 takes this to a whole new level.

We’ll start at the back as this is really where NVIDIA’s fascination with small size makes itself apparent. The complete card is 9.5” long, however the actual PCB is far shorter at only 6.75” long, 3.25” shorter than the GTX 680’s PCB. In fact it would be fair to say that rather than strapping a cooler onto a card, NVIDIA strapped a card onto a cooler. NVIDIA has certainly done short PCBs before – such as with one of the latest GTX 560 Ti designs – but never on a GTX x70 part before. But given the similarities between GK104 and GF114, this isn’t wholly surprising, if not to be expected.

In any case this odd pairing of a small PCB with a large cooler is no accident. With a TDP of only 170W NVIDIA doesn’t necessarily need a huge PCB, but because they wanted a blower for a cooler they needed a large cooler. The positioning of the GPU and various electronic components meant that the only place to put a blower fan was off of the PCB entirely, as the GK104 GPU is already fairly close to the rear of the card. Meanwhile the choice of a blower seems largely driven by the fact that this is an x70 card – NVIDIA did an excellent job with the GTX 560 Ti’s open air cooler, which was designed for the same 170W TDP, so the choice is effectively arbitrary from a technical standpoint (there’s no reason to believe $400 customers are any less likely to have a well-ventilated case than $250 buyers). Accordingly, it will be NVIDIA’s partners that will be stepping in with open air coolers of their own designs.

Starting as always at the top, as we previously mentioned the reference GTX 670 is outfitted with a 9.5” long fully shrouded blower. NVIDIA tells us that the GTX 670 uses the same fan as the GTX 680, and while they’re nearly identical in design, based on our noise tests they’re likely not identical. On that note unlike the GTX 680 the fan is no longer placed high to line up with the exhaust vent, so the GTX 670 is a bit more symmetrical in design than the GTX 680 was.


Note: We dissaembled the virtually identical EVGA card here instead

Lifting the cooler we can see that NVIDIA has gone with a fairly simple design here. The fan vents into a block-style aluminum heatsink with a copper baseplate, providing cooling for the GPU. Elsewhere we’ll see a moderately sized aluminum heatsink clamped down on top of the VRMs towards the front of the card. There is no cooling provided for the GDDR5 RAM.


Note: We dissaembled the virtually identical EVGA card here instead

As for the PCB, as we mentioned previously due to the lower TDP of the GTX 670 NVIDIA has been able to save some space. The VRM circuitry has been moved to the front of the card, leaving the GPU and the RAM towards the rear and allowing NVIDIA to simply omit a fair bit of PCB space. Of course with such small VRM circuitry the reference GTX 670 isn’t built for heavy overclocking – like the other GTX 600 cards NVIDIA isn’t even allowing overvolting on reference GTX 670 PCBs – so it will be up to partners with custom PCBs to enable that kind of functionality. Curiously only 4 of the 8 Hynix R0C GDDR5 RAM chips are on the front side of the PCB; the other 4 are on the rear. We typically only see rear-mounted RAM in cards with 16/24 chips, as 8/12 will easily fit on the same side.

Elsewhere at the top of the card we’ll find the PCIe power sockets and SLI connectors. Since NVIDIA isn’t scrambling to save space like they were with the GTX 680, the GTX 670’s PCIe power sockets are laid out in a traditional side-by-side manner. As for the SLI connectors, since this is a high-end GeForce card NVIDIA provides 2 connectors, allowing for the card to be used in 3-way SLI.

Finally at the front of the card NVIDIA is using the same I/O port configuration and bracket that we first saw with the GTX 680. This means 1 DL-DVI-D port, 1 DL-DVI-I port, 1 full size HDMI 1.4 port, and 1 full size DisplayPort 1.2. This also means the GTX 670 follows the same rules as the GTX 680 when it comes to being able to idle with multiple monitors.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 Meet The EVGA GeForce GTX 670 Superclocked
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  • kingkazuma - Friday, May 11, 2012 - link

    i was honestly surprised that Nvidia didn't make the 600 series more powerful in gpcomputing

    well guess its 7970 for me... but i would want one of these for gaming :D
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Friday, May 11, 2012 - link

    Gee what programs are you going to use the amd card for in compute ?
    I'd sure like to hear for once what amd can do, instead of experiencing it's massively frustrating failures and apologists and recent unbelievable hypocrits.
    What the heck "compute" are you using a 7970 for - I'd sure like to know what programs... and what exactly stream is capable of, but all we ever get is a blank and some fat slow drooling talking point, except when it's pointed out that nVidia has ten thousand more drivers and support and software base in compute so it's the only way to go.
    Would you enlighten us ?
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    PS - the 7970 lost the computer benchmarks here, and the 680 won.

    I guess you never checked the results and just went with the "on paper !" fantasies.

    Good luck squandering up valid programs and valid amd software.

    At least you can use the now "we'll never do it !" "we are love, we are amd! " "we demand open source! " "we demand corporate responsibility !" - PROPRIETARY amd hacked openCL winzip.

    Enjoy that gigantic hypocrisy unzipping.

    Amd is for suckers.
    Reply
  • james.jwb - Friday, May 11, 2012 - link

    I normally like to read the comment section here, but honestly can't be bothered since certain trolls have come here and for the 10th time (in the last 2/3 years), get to run a riot for a few weeks until someone at Anandtech finally butts in and bans him.

    Yawn to this scenario once again.

    Move to Disqus, Anandtech, and start moderating. You'll get 500 comments per important article and won't have to let controversy and trolls stay to bolster discussion.
    Reply
  • Gastec - Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - link

    I subscribe to that. If they don't take action maybe we should. Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Friday, May 11, 2012 - link

    Civ5 " On our final test the 7970 sees a slight resurgence compared to the past few games, preventing NVIDIA from sweeping the whole back half of our tests. "
    Well, actually, that's not nVidia sweeping "the whole back HALF" that's nVidia sweeping the entire last 75% or 3/4ths, and if it weren't for the TWS2 bug, amd could claim only 2 out of 10 games, losing a FULL 80%, more than 3/4ths of all gaming tests.

    Instead of hearing the awful truth since the 7970 dives as resolution goes up losing miserably, which is ALWAYS pointed out when nVidia cards react that, puttting down some imaginary problem the reviewer guesses at concerning nVidia, instead we hear how amd shows a slight "resurgence" like a good terrorist card, and it's not noted it's only at the lowest resolution shown, of course.
    Next the reviewer tells us how the 600 series doesn't do very well "against the 500 series" here - yet the 580 BEATS the 7950 at both 1920 and at 2560 - in other words, the truth is, the GTX500 series does EXCEPTIONALLY WELL here, smacking down even the "resurgent" amd cards brother.
    The 570 is about 40% and then 30% ahead of the 6970, as another example of how well the 500 series plays this game. That's extended performance, not 600 series "interesting it's not far ahead".
    Of course, IMO only an amd fanboy could come up with that kind of wording and analysis.
    Was it so "interesting" that the reviewer couldn't see the 580 and 570 cleaning the clocks of their competition and even above their competition ?

    So when the nVidia just prior tier does well, it's the current card not doing so well against it.

    When the current nVidia cards do win 75% of the games against amd, it's belittled to less than half, with the special less than half "sweep" phrasing, with the 7970 amd flagship losing past the lowest tested resolution as the "catch".
    What a bad joke for Nvidia the pro amd words are in these reviews games pages.
    Reply
  • medi01 - Friday, May 11, 2012 - link

    "7970 dives as resolution goes up losing miserably"

    Are you on a crack, or something?
    Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Friday, May 11, 2012 - link

    Look at the civ5 page - Civilization 5 gaming page review, as soon as you put down your stupid dumb you down drug. Reply
  • medi01 - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    So what are you smoking? Is it crack that dumbs down and turns into zealont, or were you born an idiot? Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Excellent rebuttal, you've made your point for amd so well. Reply

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