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MSI GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB Power Edition Review

MSI GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB Power Edition Review

Manufacturer: MSI
UK Price (as reviewed): £260.00 (inc VAT)
US Price (as reviewed): TBC

MSI's take on the GTX 660 Ti 2GB is based around the exact same PCB and cooler as its GTX 670 2GB Power Edition card, which means it's not the most petite of GTX 660 Ti 2GB's, especially in comparison to the Zotac card on the next page.

With a card length of 267mm (10.5in) thanks a to a cooler which slightly over-hangs the PCB, the card is actually longer than a stock GTX 680 2GB, but thankfully manages to squeeze inside a dual-slot design so as to not conflict with any adjacent expansion slots.

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It might be a large card, but this allows the Power Edition to mount an equally hefty cooler for low-noise operation

The cooler itself is MSI's own twin Frozr IV, a titan of aluminium cooling fins and heatpipes. The 40 cooling fins run the length of the card, with a pair of dust-proof coated cooling fans blowing air down through the fin-stack and over the card's PCB. As with all down-draft coolers, this means that the heat from the card is exhausted into your case rather than out the card's rear I/O. Transferring heat into the fin-stack are a quartet of nickel-coated copper heat-pipes, two 8mm in thickness and two 5mm in thickness, fitted above the aluminium contact plate.

While the GPU cooler itself has ported over well from the GTX 670 power edition, the card's memory contact plate doesn't do so well. Thanks to its disabled memory controller the top-most pair of GDDR5 chips have been moved for the GXT 660 Ti 2GB to the back-side of the PCB, yet the Power Edition's black aluminium contact plate leaves this the lower-pair uncooled. as such, MSI has chosen not to overclock the card's memory beyond the stock 1.5GHz (6GHz effective), although we're sure there's a little more to be squeezed from the card.

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The Rear I/O is the standard for 6-series Nvidia cards with a pair of Dual-lInk DVI ports, HDMI and full-size DisplayPort offering plenty of video connections, including support for multi-monitor Nvidia Surround setups. A pair of SLI connectors on the top of the card allow you to fit up to four cards in SLI should your motherboard be up to the task,while a pair of top-mounted PCI-E power connectors supply the juice without increasing the length of the card.

As with almost every GTX 660 Ti 2GB out of the gate on launch day, the Power Edition comes factory overclocked as well as custom cooled. Its GPU base clock of 1,020MHz is 102MHz higher than a stock GTX 660 Ti 2GB (which we'd imagine will be pretty rare), and in many circumstances we observed the card turbo-boosting to 1,240MHz.

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Power delivery is provided by five solid ferite choke equipped power phases for the GPU and a separate pair of power phases toward the rear of the card for the memory, for a total of 7+1 phase power for the card.

As with many Nvidia partners, MSI has also managed to wangle a free copy of Borderlands 2 for those who buy its card; a code inside the box refers you to Nvidia's promotion site, which then grants you a steam-code for Gear-boxes upcoming shoot-everything fest.

What's pleased us most about the MSI GTX 660 Ti 2GB Power Edition though is its price. Despite an 11 per cent factory overclock to the GPU and a huge custom cooler, it's set to go on sale today for just £250.