From a pure price-performance perspective (try saying that fast), the GTX 750 Ti enters the market at a sensible position. At £115, it's faster than the R7 260X, which has recently dropped to £100, likely in anticipation of this launch. The distance between the two isn't as consistent as we'd like, but even so it's easily the faster GPU. It's also priced about as well as you might expect behind the R9 270, which is about £135 now. At this end of the market, however, a little goes a long way, and the R9 270 with its Pitcairn GPU is still a very attractive and cost effective card for Full HD gaming.
There is also the issue of the recently launched R7 265 2GB from AMD, which is designed to fill the small gap between the R7 260X and R9 270. Sadly, we've yet to get a sample of it and it doesn't appear to be available in the UK yet. However, US pricing for it is the same as that of the GTX 750 Ti, so we can expect a similar story here. It utilises a Pitcairn GPU like the R9 270, so in terms of performance it could be a very close call.
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One thing is certain, however, which is that the GTX 750 Ti is more efficient than any competition from AMD (the new R7 265 has an official TDP of 150W). Nvidia pitched the card as the most efficient GPU ever built, and we're inclined to agree. It offers better performance than current generation AMD cards at a significantly lower power level. Performance per watt is also improved quite dramatically over Kepler given that there is no new manufacturing process.
With such low space and power requirements, as well as a naturally cool and quiet GPU (even when the ample overclocking headroom is taken advantage of), the GTX 750 Ti is an attractive, no fuss upgrade for users of basic off the shelf PCs that feature either integrated or very low power discrete graphics. It will enable smooth gaming at 1080p with most of the settings on full or just below. If we were looking for an upgrade to an older card like the GTX 550 Ti, we'd still probably opt for the R9 270 for £20 more, given that having a 6-pin power connection wouldn't be an issue, though users may want to consider whether features like G-Sync and ShadowPlay are important to them too.
Either way, for a cheap and efficient means to play at 1080p with quality visuals, particularly in a small form factor build, the GTX 750 Ti hits the nail on the head. We're certainly excited to see what Maxwell can do when its higher end GPUs are unleashed.