Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 review: The new people's champion topples Titans

Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1070 is one hell of a graphics card, delivering Titan X-level performance at a price real gamers can afford.

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Power and heat

Finally, let’s take a look at the GTX 1080’s power and thermal results.

gtx 1070 power

All of AMD’s recent cards consume far more power than Nvidia’s, full stop. That’s sure to change when the new 14nm FinFET Polaris-based Radeon cards roll out, but it’s reality today. But let’s compare something a bit more apples-to-apples: While the GTX 1070’s performance virtually mirrors the Titan X’s, it uses a full 50 percent less power under load, peaking at the exact same whole-system wattage as the older GTX 970. That’s crazy, and a testament to the Pascal GPU’s power efficiency.

Power is measured by plugging the entire system into a Watts Up meter, then running a stress test with Furmark for 15 minutes. It’s basically a worst-case scenario, pushing graphics cards to their limits.

gtx 1070 gpu temp

The GTX 1070 runs a wee bit hotter than the GTX 970, on the other hand—a trend we also saw in the jump from the GTX 980 to the GTX 1080. That makes sense; cramming all those billions of transistors into such a tiny footprint results in more focused heat than with previous-generation GPUs. The GTX 1070’s fan still keeps remarkably quiet for a reference design, and you won’t see much thermal throttling—the GPU dynamically scaling back clock speeds to keep cool—since it tops out at a mere 78 degrees Celcius.

The outlier on this chart, AMD’s Fury X, stays so chilly with help from an integrated closed-loop water cooler. Its radiator actually makes more noise, subjectively, than the GTX 1070’s blower-style fan under load.

Next page: Wrap-up

At a Glance
  • Meet the new people's champion. The Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 delivers more performance than the $1000 Titan X for a fraction of the cost and a fraction of the power.

    Pros

    • Faster than a Titan X
    • Meager power requirements
    • Attractive design
    • Killer performance for the price

    Cons

    • Beaten in performance by Radeon Fury cards in heavily AMD-optimized games
    • GTX 970 was a better value in relation to the GTX 980
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