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MSI N760 Hawk Review

ccokeman    -   August 8, 2013
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MSI N760 Hawk Testing:

Testing of the MSI N760 GeForce GTX 760 Hawk will consist of running it and comparison cards through the OverclockersClub.com suite of games and synthetic benchmarks. This will test the performance against many popular competitors. Comparisons will be made to cards of a range of capabilities to show where each card falls on the performance ladder. The games used are some of today's newest and most popular titles, which should be able to provide an idea of how the cards perform relative to each other.

The system specifications will remain the same throughout the testing. No adjustments will be made to the respective control panels during the testing to approximate the performance the end user can expect with a stock driver installation. I will first test the cards at stock speeds, and then overclocked to see the effects of an increase in clock speed. The cards will be placed in order from highest to lowest performance in each graph to show where they fall by comparison. The NVIDIA comparison cards will be using the 320.18 drivers while AMD-based cards will be using the Catalyst 13.5 beta 2 drivers and latest CAP profile. The results generated in my testing reached by utilizing the latest FCAT tools to illustrate the true picture of the gaming experience. To do so will require a second PC setup to capture the data stream generated by the compared video cards.

 

Testing Setup:

FCAT Capture Setup:

 

Comparison Video Cards:

 

 

Overclocking:

  • MSI GTX 760 Hawk: 1333MHz, Memory 1763MHz

Overclocking on NVIDIA's Kepler-based GPUs takes advantage of GPU Boost 2.0 technology to deliver clock speeds that are limited not only by the maximum possible clock speed the core can run but by both a thermal and power envelope. NVIDIA found out that the Kepler GPU was not reaching its thermal limits, leaving clock speed on the table. Now we have a little bit of both to look after. By maximizing these two sliders in MSI's Afterburner GPU overclocking and tuning utility, you get the best chance at reaching the max clock your card can do on air. Second on the list was to increase the fan speed to max while advancing the core voltage slider to the maximum limit of +12mv. MSI's GTX 760 Hawk is one of the cards in its product stack that supports Triple Overvoltage controls to maximize your GPU overclock. On this card the memory and PLL, or PCIe voltage, can be tweaked in addition to the core overvoltage. These sliders were also pegged to give us the best chance at reaching big clock speeds.

MSI put a dual BIOS on the GTX 760 Hawk so that you have a standard BIOS that comes at stockish boost clocks of 1137MHz. The Fun BIOS and the one all of the testing was run under supports a GPU Boost clock speed of 1176MHz under load that for all intents and purposes runs at up to 1267MHz in my testing. Right out of the box this gives the GTX 760 Hawk a distinct clock speed advantage over other GTX 760 models. Unfortunately this did not leave me a lot of head room, but this card was able to run at a Boost clock of 1333MHz consistently without fall off.

Equipped with 2GB of 1500MHz rated Hynix GDDR5 memory, the memory overclocks were substantial at 1763MHz or well above what I have been able to pull from these ICs. Not bad to say the least with this card, as the Triple Overvoltage feature adds that extra bit of voltage needed to make the card sing. All in all the card generated a healthy overclock on the core and an exceptional result on the memory that translates into real performance boosts in game across the board.

 

 

Maximum Clock Speeds:

Testing for the maximum clock speed consisted of looping Unigine Heaven 4.0 for 30 minutes each to see where the clock speeds failed when pushed. If the clock speed adjustment failed, then the clock speeds and tests were rerun until they passed a full hour of testing.

 

 

  • Gaming Tests:
  1. Metro: Last Light
  2. Crysis 3
  3. Far Cry 3
  4. Battlefield 3
  5. Batman: Arkham City
  6. Unigine Heaven Benchmark 4.0
  7. 3DMark

 

  • Usage:

  1. Temperatures
  2. Power Consumption



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