Power / Temps / Noise
As the GTX 500 series performs power management in a different way to older cards we have changed the way we test power and temperature levels for this review. For idle power we list the full system use at the wall after sitting at the desktop with no activity for 5 minutes. Load power is the highest reading we saw for the full system when testing during this review. Temperatures are taken in the same way.
Noise levels are taken after a period of prolonged gaming in a scenario which applied maximum load to the GPU.
Essentially what you can tell from the above explanation of our testing is that changes to the cards have resulted in us moving from synthetic tests such as Furmark to real world testing for power, temperatures and noise, even though the Gainward card uses a traditional power design. The results above are therefore what consumers can expect to see when using these cards themselves.
Looking first at the power use of the GLH card we see that it sits a little above the reference model, quite acceptable for an overclocked edition. The temperatures recorded on the Gainward card are much better than the NVIDIA card though, it knocks 7c off the reference design when gaming. In addition to that the GLH’s custom cooler runs quieter than the NVIDIA design which makes it even more desirable than the standard card.
Here is the impact the overclock had on our Crysis results: