Leadtek GeForce GTX 780

Tak­ing the Lead

HWM (Malaysia) - - LAB TEST - TEXT // JOHN LAW

It’s been close to half a year al­ready, so it’s pretty safe to say that man­u­fac­tur­ers have had their fill in at­tach­ing cus­tom cool­ers, spe­cial at­tach­ments and tweaks that would make NVIDIA’s cur­rent GTX 700 se­ries graph­ics card range go the dis­tance. On the other end of the spec­trum, there are man­u­fac­tur­ers who aren’t fol­low­ing suit, choos­ing in­stead to uti­lize NVIDIA’s al­ready ef­fi­cient stock cooler. Leadtek’s GeForce GTX 780 is one such card.

In an­other re­view in this is­sue, we talked about how graph­ics cards with cus­tom cool­ers look com­pletely and absolutely stun­ning but at the same time, evoke a sense of provo­ca­tion and in­tim­i­da­tion just from the very sight of it. Leadtek’s own GTX 780, how­ever, is a far cry from all those fancy bells and whis­tles. In­stead, it is unas­sum­ing and un­apolo­getic with its stock NVIDIA cool­ers that first made their de­but with the re­lease of its pre­de­ces­sor; the TI­TAN.

The power that comes off of this graph­ics card is stan­dard and we’re not just say­ing that. This GTX 780’s clock speed is set by its maker at a core clock speed of 863MHz with its max­i­mum boost clock speed hit­ting as high as 900MHz. While that may not seem very im­pres­sive, there are two things to keep in mind. First, this card is us­ing a stock-de­signed cooler, which means that it’s still ca­pa­ble of be­ing tweaked fur­ther.

Sec­ond, all GeForce cards un­der the lat­est 700 se­ries are set and equipped with NVIDIA’s GPU Boost 2.0 tech­nol­ogy. That means that de­pend­ing on your card’s tem­per­a­ture and en­vi­ron­ment, there’s a good chance that you can push this GTX 780 to an even greater clock speed than stated.

The bench­mark scores we got are pretty much the stan­dard fare as well. Run­ning 3DMark’s Fire Strike and Fire Strike Ex­treme tests and 3DMark11, the scores achieved were 8,389, 4,332 and 11,686, re­spec­tively. When we over­clocked the GPU and mem­ory clock speeds by 100MHz each, 3DMark yielded a rel­a­tive im­prove­ment with Fire Strike and Fire Strike Ex­treme scor­ing 8,841 and 4,626, re­spec­tively.

Dur­ing our over­clock­ing test­ing pe­riod, we paid close at­ten­tion to the heat lev­els of the card be­fore and af­ter we over­clocked it. We no­ticed that this card’s tem­per­a­ture did spike when­ever the graph­ics work­load be­came stren­u­ous by ap­prox­i­mately 5 to 7 de­grees from an idling 42 de­grees Cel­sius be­fore over­clock­ing. Once over­clocked, the tem­per­a­ture nat­u­rally went higher, this time soar­ing be­tween 12 and 14 de­grees more.

The GTX 780 per­formed rel­a­tively well with our re­al­world bench­marks. Arkham City had it main­tain­ing at 85 FPS at the high­est pos­si­ble set­tings with PhysX ac­ti­vated. Cr­y­sis, sur­pris­ingly, was man­aged at a con­stant 40 FPS with 4x TXAA; the max­i­mum NVIDIA based an­tialias­ing pos­si­ble for the game.

So, if you’re not par­tic­u­larly fussy about hav­ing the best graph­ics per­for­mance but still want brag­ging rights for hav­ing the high­est-end NVIDIA graph­ics card that money to­day can buy, we would strongly rec­om­mend that you pur­chase this tried and true com­po­nent from Leadtek.

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