Nvidia and AMD (formerly ATI) are certainly fighting for the attention of gaming enthusiasts, releasing numerous cards around the £200 mark. Back in July 2010, Nvidia launched the excellent GeForce GTX 460 for just shy of that amount. More recently, AMD waded in with its HD 6870 for around £180 and the Radeon HD 6950 for £220. Now Nvidia is back with the GeForce GTX 560 Ti, again at around £200.
In fact the 560 Ti is available at a range of prices. This is because Nvidia has encouraged manufacturers to produce overclocked versions of the card, so much so that there are few stock versions available. Our benchmarks below were run on the reference card from Nvidia, which has a core clock speed of 822MHz and 1GB of GDDR5 memory running at 1GHz. However, cards with higher clock speeds are available at the same price as the reference cards.The Palit GeForce GTX 560Ti Sonic Edition, for example, has a core clock speed of 900MH.
Clock speed isn’t everything in a graphics card, but speeding things up can improve performance. If your card isn’t overclocked as standard you could use a free online tool, such as MSI Afterburner to increase speeds yourself.
Even in its reference form, there’s no doubt the GTX 560 is a big step up from its predecessor, the 460. The base clock speed is up 145MHz from 675MHz and memory is up 100MHz from 900MHz. Just as important is the use of all eight streaming multiprocessors, as only seven were enabled in the GTX 460 This gives an additional 48 stream processors for greater parallel processing power.
There’s a pair of DVI outputs plus a mini HDMI port with support for all the latest HD standards, plus HDMI 1.4a for 3D video and gaming. It requires two six-pin power connectors, but only draws 190W at peak load. Even when overclocked, the stock fan was reasonably quiet and kept everything nice and cool.