Reference board examination
Nvidia's reference card bears an uncanny resemblance to the GeForce GTX 670 we looked at over a year ago. That resemblance runs more skin deep because, as far as we can tell, the two Nvidia-provided cards are identical in appearance. The only minor difference, and it really is minor, rests with the GTX 760 missing a green line scoring the left-hand side.
Understanding the relationship between reference cards is actually important, we feel, as any add-in card (AIC) partner is likely to repurpose GeForce GTX 670 cards into lower-cost GTX 760s. There will be minimal work to do in this process, and we have it on good authority that more than one partner is simply putting a sticker over a GTX 670/680 PCB and marking it as a new-generation GTX 760.
The reference card measures 9.5in in length and uses a radial fan to push air through a fully-enclosed heatsink and out of the back. Nvidia's GTX 760 design, then, isn't as elaborate or good-looking as the Titan-esque cooler.
Just like the GTX 670, the actual PCB is only 6.75in long. Going back to retail models you are likely to see in shops and online stores, most aftermarket cards will feature huge coolers and large PCBs, especially overclocked versions, though we would love to see more take the approach of Asus and build smaller cards that are a great fit for space-constrained chassis.
GTX 760's memory arrangement stays the same as GTX 670, that is, a 2GB framebuffer operating at 6,008MHz. It's constituted on the reference card via eight chips of commonly-available Hynix GDDR5 RAM.
Rear outputs mirror those on all GTX 6- and 7-series GPUs, meaning the card can drive four screens. We like the fact that both DVI and the HDMI can be used without the need for any special adapters, and three-screen gaming, with optional 3D support, is available.
The reference card underscores the similarity of Nvidia's mid-range GPUs irrespective of model designation. We hope partners will devise new, exciting heatsinks for this model though doubt it will happen; it's much easier to slap on a GTX 670/680-type cooler and be done with it.