Nvidia GeForce GTX 560 Ti
Nvidia GeForce GTX 560 Ti review: A strong push for the midrange graphics card crown
- Excellent performance
- Competitive pricing favors the competition
Nvidia's GeForce GTX 560 Ti graphics card makes a strong push for the midrange graphics card crown, but savvy shoppers have a few options before them.
Nvidia has been on something of a hot streak lately. Having spent the better part of a year in the shadow of AMD's 5800 series, and after a false start with the GeForce GTX 480 launch, we saw Nvidia's long-awaited Fermi architecture "done right" with the GeForce GTX 580. And again just a few weeks later, with the launch of the GeForce GTX 570.
They aren't done yet. Launching today is Nvidia's GeForce GTX 560 Ti (US$249). While the 570 and 580 sat at the upper echelons of graphics card category, the new GTX 560 Ti is aimed squarely at the mid-range market, where AMD's 6800 series holds sway. The GTX 560 pays homage to Nvidia's Titanium GPU line, resurrecting a fondly-remembered graphics card lineage. It's not meant to replace the GeForce GTX 460, but instead serve as a faster, slightly more expensive alternative.
The GTX 560 Ti looks quite a bit like the rest of the 500 series. It's equipped with a pair of DVI-ports and a mini-HDMI port. It's also built on the Fermi architecture, but sports transistor-level tweaks to improve performance, and power consumption.
The GTX 560 Ti has been purposefully matched up against AMD's 6800 series of graphics cards -- namely, the Radeon HD 6850 ($180) and Radeon HD 6870 ($219). And it's a close call. Nvidia's part makes a strong showing on our benchmarks, but a last minute price-shuffle from the competition has left AMD's mid-range and higher-end wares as the better value, overall.
Performance: Synthetic Benchmarks
Let's dive into the numbers. We'll start, as always, with the synthetic benchmarks. These exist as a means to stress test graphics cards in ways that conventional games and applications generally don't. They aren't the best "real world" assessment of how a particular part well perform (we'll game to games testing in a bit), but they serve as a general yard stick with which a graphics card can be measured. As always, click on any graph for a larger version.
In the forward-looking Unigine Heaven benchmark, Nvidia's entry is the clear winner. But this isn't too surprising, as Nvidia's wares generally perform well on this DirectX 11-based test.
The Unigine engine places quite a bit of emphasis on tessellation, an area to which Nvidia has devoted much of the Fermi architecture's computational muscle. Even on the "Normal" tessellation setting, Nvidia's card takes top honors here.
We'll look at 3DMark's Vantage benchmark suite next. This DirectX 10-based benchmark is showing its age, and its DirectX 11-based successor recently arrived on the scene. That said, 3DMark Vantage is an industry mainstay.
On both the High and Extreme profile settings Nvidia's part maintained a 25% lead over AMD's Radeon HD 6870, while the relatively inexpensive Radeon HD 6850 trails at the rear of the pack.
The results were a bit less direct once we moved on to testing actual games. Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X. is a DirectX 10.1-based arcade flight game, as graphically intensive as it is action packed.
While all three cards posted excellent results, the GTX 560 Ti maintained a strong lead, consistently hovering between 15 - 20 frames per second ahead of the Radeon HD 6870.
Roles are reversed when looking at Just Cause 2's demanding benchmark. We maximized the available graphics settings and ran the "Concrete Jungle" scenario. This is one of the more strenuous tests graphics tests that Just Cause 2 offers, and one of the tougher ones in our retinue.
The results are tantalizingly close -- consistently within 2 to 3 frames per second -- but on our tests, Nvidia's GTX 560 Ti lags slightly behind the Radeon HD 6870 in all but one setting.
Efficiency and Value
To get a real sense of the GTX 560 Ti's efficiency, we'll take a few factors into account. First, there's the raw power usage. When sitting idle, Nvidia's card drew 111W of power. The Radeon HD 6870 drew 103W, while the Radeon HD 6850 drew 102. Under a full load, the GTX 560 Ti ramped up to 300W, while the 6870 and the 6850 saw 246W and 219W, respectively.
By coupling our power readings with the average frames per second across our games tests, arrive at a number we call the Performance per Watt -- the watts used per average frames per second. Lower is better here.
These results aren't too surprising: AMD's graphics cards are generally known for their energy efficiency. Of interest is how much Nvidia has closed the gap: the month-old GTX 570 drew close to 350W while under load.
A more significant metric for the savvy shopper will be found on our Value chart, where we measure the Dollars per FPS by dividing the price tag of each GPU by the average frame rates across our tests.
And as has generally been the case with our tests thus far, there is no blowout here: Nvidia's card is generally in third place from a value proposition, but never more than a negligible $0.11 behind the Radeon HD 6870.
The Big Picture
Nvidia's GeForce GTX 560 Ti is ultimately a victim of circumstance. The performance at its $250 price point is excellent, and the reduced power consumption shows that Nvidia is taking energy efficiency seriously. But it was dropped into a crowded market. AMD decided it would rather drop its prices than give up the midrange GPU crown. Adding insult to injury, they also brought the price tag on the Radeon HD 6950 down to $289, bringing AMD's performance-oriented Radeon HD 6900 series within spitting distance of Nvidia's GTX 560 Ti. With so many winning models on the table its a step the competition can afford to take, whereas those eyeing Nvidia's wares are suddenly presented with a few more tantalizing offers from AMD's camp.
There's only one clear winner in this bout: the consumer.
Join the newsletter!
WD MY PASSPORT™ X Gaming Storage
Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 14
Apple iPhone X
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-55EZ950U
WD MY PASSPORT™ Gaming Storage
Nespresso Creatista Coffee Machine
cloudandco Smart Cane
Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44
Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer Fuchsia/Iron
SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™
Toys for Boys
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera
Onyx Smart Walkie Talkie
UBTech First Order Stormtrooper Robot
Google Daydream View VR Headset
Ubiquiti Network’s Front Row Camera
Propel Star Wars T-65 X-Wing Drone
LaCie Rugged USB-C Portable Hard Drive
Lego Mindstorms EV3
Bose SoundLink Micro
PETKIG Go Smart Dog Leash
WD MY CLOUD™ HOME Personal Cloud Storage
Belkin Pocket Power 10,000mAh
Dearear Endear In-ear Wireless Earphones
Toffee Bags Commuter Satchel
iRobot Roomba 980 Vaccum Cleaning Robot
Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K
Xbox One X
Amazon Echo Bluetooth Speaker
Nest Protect Smart Smoke Alarm
Panasonic Hi-Fi - SC-UA7GS-K
3SIXT 3-in-1 Smartphone Lens Kit
Ikea NORDMÄRKE Wireless Charging Pad
Panasonic Portable Splashproof Fun - RF-D20U
Fallout Geeki Tikis
Logitech Doodle Collection Wireless Mouse
Urbanworx Full HD Action Camera
Raspberry Pi Starter Kit
Tile Pro Bluetooth Tracker
Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
Lexon Flip Alarm Clock
Kogan Bluetooth Soundbar
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 TCL X2 review: QLED escapes the premium market
- 2 Fitbit Ionic review: Impressive but not quite iconic
- 3 Acer Spin 5 review: Value for money but conditions apply
- 4 Huawei Mate 10 Pro Review: A solid winter flagship that cribs from the best
- 5 Sony LF-S50G review: Google Assistant and then some
Latest News Articles
- CES 2018: Everything Announced By MadCatz
- CES 2018: Crucial launches next generation MX500 SSD
- CES 2018: Intel announces new 8th-Gen Vega M-integrated processors
- CES 2018: Intel Reveals VR-Ready ‘Hades Canyon’ NUC
- BenQ unveils a pair of new ergonomic eSports mice
PCW Evaluation Team
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
- JBL Link 10 review
- Samsung Gear Sport review: A worthy contender
- OPPO Load Up A73 Smartphone With Flagship Features
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
Product Launch Showcase
- FTOpenText ConsultantQLD
- FTTechnical Support Engineer - OnsiteOther
- TPProject ManagerACT
- TPProject ManagerVIC
- FTSenior Graphic DesignerACT
- FTSenior React DeveloperQLD
- FTTableau DeveloperOther
- FTTwo Executive Assistants (APS4 & APS5/6)ACT
- FTSenior .NET Developer - Back EndOther
- CCMultiple System Engineers - Data Centre - TelcoVIC
- FTHFC Project Manager (Delivery) - ContractVIC
- FTProgram ManagerSA
- CCCall Centre Operator /AdministratorNSW
- CCData ArchitectWA
- FTUX Design LeadOther
- CCAIX System Administration ? UNIXVIC
- TPSenior Project ManagerNSW
- CCDevOps EngineerQLD
- FTNetwork Engineering Team Lead/Network ManagerQLD
- TPDevOps Practice OfficerQLD
- TPProcurement ManagerACT
- FTInfrastructure Manager / Service Delivery ManagerVIC
- CCBusiness AnalystACT
- CCSenior Change ManagerNSW