Another date with ZOTAC today as every time they contact me, I get quite excited to see what they have up their sleeve this time. I am not going to beat around the bush today as NVIDIA’s latest architecture “Maxwell” has been steamrolling through the GPU market with multiple releases; the GTX 970/980 and more recently with the more budget orientated GTX 960. ZOTAC have of course launched their model and have strapped their dual fan AMP! cooler on it; this making today’s review about the ZOTAC GTX 960 AMP! Edition 2GB graphics card…
Click here to read more about NVIDIA’s GTX 960 here – http://www.geforce.co.uk/hardware/desktop-gpus/geforce-gtx-960
So taking a look at the ZOTAC GTX 960 AMP! card head on, as previously mentioned, ZOTAC have implemented a dual 90mm fan designed cooler with “FREEZE” technology; basically ZOTACS name for semi-passive cooling. Since ZOTAC dropped the orange off their cards, they have become more popular for those wanting something aesthetically pleasing but more importantly, something can sit in their build without breaking down the walls of weird colour combinations; this particular card features a gun metal grey and black theme throughout.
The GTX 960 AMP! features a backplate which fits in with the edge of the card; something I find ingenious and very well done. It is black and has ventilation designed to allow airflow to keep the rear of the PCB cool. Powering this card is a simple task and unlike MSI, they have opted for 1 x 6pin PCI-E power cable which fits in well with the “efficient” Maxwell ethos NVIDIA set about to create with this card.
This card also sits at 8.19” in length which puts this card in ITX territory and although not officially small form factor; it is more likely to fit into small gaps than say a 13” GTX 980 etc.
SLI is available with the GTX 960 but only in 2 way; the singular node at the end signifies this as cards which feature more than 2 way SLI feature 2 x nodes.
In terms of clock speeds, the ZOTAC GTX 960 AMP! 1266MHz base clock on the core which boosts to 1329MHz thanks to NVIDIA’s GPU boost 2.0 technology. This is complimented with a 1753MHz clock on the memory as standard; memory doesn’t unfortunately boost etc. This is quite a nice overclock out of the box here from ZOTAC and granted the 1 x 6pin is the only thing powering this card, ZOTAC have clearly gone all out to raise the stakes on this particular market sector.
ZOTAC, unlike Palit have done on some of their newer Jetstream models, have included full size DisplayPort connections as well as HDMI; 3 x DisplayPort and 1 x HDMI in total, both of which support up to 4K resolutions. There is also 1 x DVI connector included which supports up to a maximum of 2560×1600; pretty standard for DVI and graphics cards currently.
Let’s take a look at the official specifications from ZOTAC and see how this card compares with others previously tested; specifically the ASUS/MSI variations of the GTX 960…