Nvidia’s GTX980 has been one of their greatest success stories in the last decade. While we have reviewed almost every partner board available, today we look at something very special – the new KFA2 GeForce GTX980 ‘8Pack Edition’. Overclockers UK resident overclocking world champion Ian ‘8Pack’ Parry has been working with the company to produce one of the world’s fastest air cooled cards. This solution is not only shipped at very high overclocked speeds, but it has been the recipient of uprated Capacitors and VRM components.
Nvidia’s Maxwell architecture has been dominating the graphics sector for the last year. The GTX750ti was a warning shot across the bow for AMD – a super efficient GPU with more powerful siblings waiting in the wings. Some time later, the GTX970 and GTX980 hit market without an answer. AMD’s power consumption is still a concern and until their next generation of cards hit later this year Nvidia have been able to run amok in the high end.
|GPU||GeForce GTX 750ti (Maxwell)||GeForce GTX 960 (Maxwell)||Geforce GTX 970 (Maxwell)||GeForce GTX 980 (Maxwell)||Geforce GTX Titan X|
|Base Clock||1020 mhz||1126 mhz||1050 mhz||1126 mhz||1000 mhz|
|GPU Boost Clock||1085 mhz||1178 mhz||1178 mhz||1216 mhz||1076mhz|
|Total Video memory||2GB||2GB||4GB||4GB||12GB|
|Texture fill-rate||40.8 Gigatexels/Sec||72.1 Gigatexels/Sec||109.2 Gigatexels/Sec||144.1 Gigatexels/Sec||192 Gigatexels/Sec|
|Memory Clock||5400 mhz||7010 mhz||7000 mhz||7000 mhz||7000 mhz|
|Memory Bandwidth||86.4 GB/sec||112.16 GB/sec||224 GB/s||224 GB/sec||336.5 GB/sec|
|TDP||60 watts||120 watts||145 watts||165 watts||250 watts|
The new GM204 GPU is very efficient. The Maxwell SM has been rebalanced so that the CUDA cores are fully utilised more often. Doing so saves power and enhances overall performance. The L2 cache size in the GM204 is 2MB, or four times larger than the GK104. The addition of extra cache means that fewer requests to the GPU memory are needed – again reducing power consumption and pushing more performance.
The Geforce GTX 980 is equipped with 7Gbps memory. Those of you with higher resolution monitors, or running in a multi screen configuration will also be pleased to hear that there is 4GB of GDDR5 memory on the card, not 3GB – this memory will push 224 GB/s sec. Nvidia have added a new compression engine to reduce the demand on DRAM bandwidth.
The KFA2 Geforce GTX980 ‘8Pack Edition’ has received a mighty impressive core clock enhancement to 1,304mhz – from 1,126mhz on the reference design (boost speed 1418mhz). The GDDR5 memory is running at the default 1,753mhz speeds (7Gbps effective) but we believe there will be huge potential for overclocking, later in the review.