The mid performance sector has always been acutely competitive, with manufacturers battling to get sales. Right now there are a mind boggling array of HD6850’s, HD6870’s and GTX560/GTX 560ti models to choose from.
Sparkle have simply enhanced the reference Nvidia design, and have overclocked the core for extra performance, while doubling the memory count to 2GB. As our testing has shown this particular card is very closely matched to AMD’s HD6870, which has been an enthusiast favourite now for many months.
Many of the AMD HD6870 partner cards retail for around the £140-150 mark, and come equipped pre-overclocked with enhanced cooling systems – an example being this XFX HD6870 DD.
This Sparkle GTX560 OC edition is on sale now for around the £170 mark, and we feel it offers good value for money especially with 2GB of memory which helps to improve performance with more demanding settings.
The cooler isn’t the most impressive we have seen in recent months and it generates a little more noise than some others we have analysed. It is a simple, single fan solution with two copper heatpipes underneath, leading into two racks of aluminum fins. A four heatpipe implementation, or dual fan cooler would have been a more sophisticated solution, especially in regards to lowering noise emissions.
If you are an Nvidia lover and are in the market for a relatively inexpensive upgrade to game at 1080p, then this certainly is worth buying. That said, the competition in the mid range sector is very tight right now and there are plenty of options to choose from. If Sparkle had opted for a dual fan solution or upgraded the heatsink underneath then this would have scored higher, but regardless it is still a good purchase decision.
You can buy direct from CCL over here for £170.94 inc vat.
- Great performance at 1080p.
- some overclocking headroom.
- runs relatively cool.
- reasonably priced for a 2GB solution.
- Can get a little noisy under load.
- Cooler could have been better at this price.
Kitguru says: A solid purchase, but it is facing stiff competition in this sector.