The EVGA GTX 260 we have for review is a base model design, adhering to the nVidia standard specification. EVGA also offers several flavors of overclocked versions such as the Superclocked, SSC and latest FTW editions. The reference spec GTX 260 sports the following:
576MHz Clock Speed
192 Processing Cores
896MB DDR3 Memory
Supports DirectX 10, CUDA, PhysX and PureVideo HD
The GTX 260 comes packaged very carefully in soft foam with separate compartments for the card and accessories. Included with the video card are two VGA to DVI adapters, two 6pin PCIe power adapters, component video adapter, installation CD and guide, quick start guide and EVGA case sticker. Some retail versions of the card will undoubtedly come with a bundled game, however this Step-Up version did not.
The card itself is huge, measuring a full 10.5" long, and like its bigger GTX 280 brother and the previously released 9800GX2, uses a cooling device that completely encloses the card. All surfaces with electronic components are now hidden behind vented plastic and metal panels except for openings where connections are required. As GX2 users previously found, this does complicate things if you plan on upgrading the stock cooling since, due to a new clip and screw design, the halves are more difficult to get apart without breaking something and may void your warranty. Although this does allow the vendor the opportunity to place graphics on both the front and back of the card now, and I was pleased to see that EVGA has gone with a tasteful flame design rather than some cartoon or 3D rendered character. The lettering on the back side of the card has been placed upside down, so it is more easily readable when oriented in a standard ATX tower case with a side window.
The top edge of the card contains two 6pin PCIe power connectors and an audio port for connecting to an HDMI-capable sound card. A small rubber cap covers the port when not in use. The fan is a centrifugal type commonly used on video cards and is offset slightly along with a small indent in the enclosure to allow for proper airflow when used in SLI configurations. Both Dual and Tri SLI is supported, and a rubber cap covers those connectors when not in use as well. The rear of the card contains two DVI jacks and a round plug for HDMI/TV out.
Next let's check out installation and setup.