NVIDIA’s GeForce GTX 460 has been creating lots of fuss lately, but there’s a good reason for it. The GPU is served in two flavors: a 768 MB model, costing around US$ 199, and a 1 GB version coming with a price tag of about US$ 229. Both offer excellent performance for their price range. So, naturally, gamers all over the world are so itching to get their hands on one of these. We haven’t seen a card so interesting since the time of the venerable GeForce 8800 GT.
A single GeForce GTX 460 graphics card packs enough computing power to run all but the most demanding games with acceptable frame rates. We found such case with Metro 2033, one of the few games in which it couldn’t score anywhere near the 30 FPS mark.
So, if one is not enough, how about adding another for an extra boost of speed? We will show you just how much performance improvement you can expect from a pair of GeForce GTX 460 in SLI mode. First, let’s take a look at the technical details of both versions of GTX 460. For comparison purposes, we also brought in NVIDIA’s latest flagship, the GTX 480, which also happens to be the fastest single-GPU solution available today.
|NVIDIA GTX 480||NVIDIA GTX 460 1GB||NVIDIA GTX 460 768MB|
|Fabrication Process||40 nm||40 nm||40 nm|
|Transistors||3.2 Billion||1.95 Billion||1.95 Billion|
|Die Size||529 mm²||320 mm²||320 mm²|
|Core Clock||700 MHz||675 MHz||675 MHz|
|Shader Clock||1401 MHz||1350 MHz||1350 MHz|
|Memory Size||1536 MB||1024 MB||768 MB|
|Memory Clock (effective)||3696 MHz||3600 MHz||3600 MHz|
|Power Connectors||8-pin + 6-pin||2x 6-pin||2x 6-pin|
|Min Recommended Power Supply||600 W||450 W||450 W|
|Bus Support||PCIe 2.1 x16||PCIe 2.1 x16||PCIe 2.1 x16|
In order to run your system in SLI mode, you need a pair of identical GeForce cards. Also, since the additional card would require an extra PCI-Express x16 slot, make sure you have at least two of those on your motherboard. SLI options are available on motherboards based on Intel’s Series 5 chipset or AMD boards based on the nForce chipset.
To connect the two graphics card, you will need an SLI Bridge like this one.
You will also need a power supply with at least four, 6 pin PCI-Express connectors.
After installing the driver, open the NVIDIA control panel and select the “Maximize 3D Performance” option in the “Set SLI and PhysX Configuration” menu to enable SLI mode. There, you’re now set for some dual graphics actions.