Like we said, Gainward is already working on an overclocked non-reference GTX 780 card, with a new cooler and we can only say that we feel sorry for the engineers. The reference design is very good indeed and it won’t be easy to make it much better without breaking the bank.
In fact, the GTX 780 got so much praise from so many reviewers that one has to wonder what subsequent generations will be like, and what AIBs will have to do to make their non-reference cards appealing.
The GTX 780 is closely related to the Titan, since both cards are based on the new GK110 chip, hence the “new” GTX 700 generation doesn’t really bring a lot of new stuff to the tablet. However, Nvidia seems to have managed to squeeze as much potential from the Kepler architecture as possible, so the new card is an good upgrade over the GTX 680, despite the fact that they are both based on 28nm Kepler chips.
If you do your gaming at 1920x1080 or 2560x1600, you can expect a 20 percent performance boost over the GTX 680, on average of course. What’s more, performance per watt is no worse – in fact in some situations it is even better. Looking at the Titan, it doesn’t seem like a very sensible option if you’re not gunning for higher resolutions or multi-monitor setups. The GTX 780 is much cheaper and it is fast enough.
The cooler is really impressive and we can’t underscore this enough. It is almost silent and even under heavy load it has acceptable level of noise. The fact that quite a few partners didn’t roll out their custom versions of the GTX 780 is a testament to its quality. Therefore Gainward’s decision to launch only a reference card in its first batch is understandable.
The biggest downside is the price. The GTX 780 launched at €650, but we are happy to report that things have changed for the better. Just a month after launch the Gainward GTX 780 dropped to €561, which is much better – but it is still a lot given the disastrous economic situation and record youth unemployment in Europe. However, if you can afford it, we can recommend it.