Gigabyte GeForce RTX 2070 Windforce review: This $500 graphics card is a solid value

With the Gigabyte RTX 2070 Windforce delivering such strong performance at $500, there's little reason to spend more on an RTX 2070 graphics card unless you're looking for specific extra features.

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As with all RTX graphics card, overclocking the Gigabyte RTX 2070 is dead-simple thanks to the new one-click Nvidia Scanner API auto-overclocking tool. Despite hitting reference specs and an entry-level price tag, Gigabyte lets you increase the Windforce’s power limit—the major factor holding back RTX performance this generation—up to 114 percent, or roughly as much as you can with Nvidia’s Founders Edition. EVGA lets you crank the RTX 2070 XC up to a whopping 130 percent.

overclocked Brad Chacos/IDG

Once you’ve maxed out the power, GPU temperature, and voltage sliders and run the Scanner tool, however, we saw virtually identical overclocked performance out of all three of these RTX 2070 options. The Gigabyte Windforce’s +202 score resulted in a real-world boost clock of 1,753MHz, up from the 1,620MHz reference spec. Nvidia’s GPU boost technology lets RTX graphics cards far exceed rated boost clocks, though. Fully loaded, all three hit sustained clock speeds around the 2GHz mark in most gaming workloads—going just over in lighter scenes, and dipping just under in heavier scenes.

Should you buy the GeForce RTX 2070 Windforce?

Definitely, if you’re in the market for a $500 graphics card.

The RTX 2070 dominates its $500 rivals, the GTX 1080 and Radeon RX Vega 64, delivering a double-digit averaged performance advantage against the last-gen GPUs, and over 20 percent more performance in games that leverage async compute capabilities. Plus, Nvidia’s latest hardware grants access to the brave new worlds of ray tracing and AI-enhanced gaming. Because no real-world games incorporate those technologies yet, however, we can’t measure how well the cut-down RTX 2070 performs in those tasks compared to more expensive RTX options.

gigabyte rtx 2070 windforce 12 Brad Chacos/IDG

The Gigabyte RTX 2070 Windforce hangs with the overclocked $550 EVGA XC and $600 Nvidia Founders Edition performance-wise, despite sticking to stock speeds and a baseline price tag. Applying a quick and easy auto-overclock with Nvidia Scanner pushes the card’s frame rates beyond those pricier options—though those can also be overclocked—and the triple-fan Windforce cooler runs slightly colder than Founders Edition solution.

Spending more would get you some nice extra features, like dual BIOSes and quieter cooling. Nevertheless at $500 on Amazon, the Gigabyte RTX 2070 Windforce is easy to recommend. Pick it up if you’re looking for a great graphics card for high-refresh-rate 1440p gaming, or blazing-fast 1080p. It’s also capable of entry-level 4K gaming if you’re willing to turn some graphics options down to High. If you’re just looking for 1440p gaming at 60 frames per second, though, and especially if you don’t mind playing below Ultra graphics settings, you can save some scratch by opting for a last-gen GTX 1070 or GTX 1070 Ti instead.

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At a Glance
  • With the Gigabyte RTX 2070 Windforce delivering such strong performance at $500, there's little reason to spend more on an RTX 2070 graphics card unless you're looking for specific features.


    • Great 1440p and entry-level 4K gaming performance
    • RT and tensor cores for ray tracing, DLSS, and more
    • Custom Windforce cooler is better than Nvidia's Founders Edition
    • Actually achieves $500 MSRP price
    • Similar performance to pricier RTX 2070 options


    • Ray tracing and DLSS not available in games yet
    • Plastic shroud and fans
    • Lacks fancy extra features
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