GIGABYTE GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming 2GB

Closer Look

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The GIGABYTE GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming is a dual slot GPU based on the same 28nm GM206 core as the GTX 960’s. In fact, save for a bit of limited hardware the Xtreme Gaming GTX 950 essentially is a GTX 960. You get a 1203 MHz base clock with a 1405 MHz boost clock, combined with a memory clock of 7000 MHz which puts the Xtreme Gaming GTX 950 in the position to potentially be the fastest GTX 950 available. You may have seen GIGABYTE’s GPU Gauntlet Sorting feature, what exactly does that mean? When components are being manufactured some inherently have better physical properties than others, which makes for a better performing end product, to ensure the Xtreme Gaming GTX 950 produces satisfactory results GIGABYTE selects only the top performing cores for this series.

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The addition of a backplate on the Xtreme Gaming GTX 950 gives it more of a higher end feel for a mainstream card. A backplate protecting the PCB is always welcomed and gives another dynamic to the look of the card, most importantly it adds a slight peace of mind knowing you are that much more safe guarded against accidents. We like the angled corners as they save space, a little extra clearance space never hurt anyone. The card measures:  22.5 cm x 12.0 cm.

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For power the Xtreme Gaming GTX 950 requires one 8-pin PCI-Express power connector. For power management we get a OnSemi NCP 81174 voltage controller. The memory chips are supplied by Samsung. The processor is Nvidia’s GM206 weighing in with a transistor count of 2.9 billion. Below is a table of a few Nvidia GPUs to show how the Xtreme Gaming GTX 950 compares to a few similar GPUs.

GIGABYTE GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming EVGA GTX 960 SSC GeForce GTX 760
Chip GM206 GM206 GK104 Kepler
Process 28 nm 28 nm 28 nm
Transistors 2.94 billion 2.94 billion 3.54 billion
GPU clock 1203 MHz 1279 MHz 960 MHz
GPU Boost clock 1405 MHz 1342 MHz 1033 MHz
Memory GDDR5 2048 MB 2048 MB 2048 MB
Memory clock 1750 (7000) MHz 1750 (7010) MHz 1500 (6000) MHz
Memory interface 128 Bit 128 Bit 256 Bit
Memory bandwidth 112.0 GB/s 112.16 GB/s 192.200 MB/s
TMUs 48 85 96
Shader Cores 768 1024 1’152
ROPs 32 32 32
TDP 125 Watt 160 Watt 170 Watt
Slots 2 2 Reference Design
Cooler WINDFORCE 2X ACX 2.0 NVIDIA Reference

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A look at the back I\O shows the GIGABYTE GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming 2GB equipped with one HDMI port that is 2.0 compatible, three DisplayPorts, and one DVI port. There is also a few slots cut in the panel to allow a bit of exhaust airflow. GIGABYTE has also coated the PCB in a breathable aerospace-grade coating to shield against moisture, dust, and corrosion, interesting. SLI is also supported and is quite effective as you will see later on.

GIGABYTE_GTX950_4 GIGABYTE_GTX950_5

Here we see the two LED indicators that let you know when the fans on the GIGABYTE GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming 2GB are not in operation. When using the stock fan profile operation the WINDFORCE fans will not start spinning until the GPU hits 55°C, staying nice and quiet. We personally don’t care about the noise these fans produce as we’d choose lower temps over silence any day, even at 90% the fans aren’t really loud enough to bother us personally. For those who are noise conscious the GTX 950 Xtreme Gaming 2GB will be perfectly healthy operating at stock function.

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When the Xtreme Gaming GTX 950’s fans do kick on the WINDFORCE badge will illuminate letting you know cooling action is in full effect. With the help of OC Guru II you can choose from different LED options. Colors include Blue, Light Blue, Red, Green, Yellow, Purple, White, and Random. LED modes include static, breathing, flashing, and dual flashing. If you want the LEDs on all the time that is an option, the brightness level can also be changed.

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