Gainward GTX 680 Phantom is a factory overclocked card with custom cooling that’s quieter and has better cooling performanse that the reference version. The factory overclock will provide you with about 6-7 percent better results than the reference card but Phantom cooling is definitely what sets it apart from the pack.
Gainward continued its tradition so the new Phantom is still dual slot, but we think most users won’t mind. We can’t pick hairs as the cooler does its job really good and it remains quiet all the time.
When playing less demanding games, users can limit frame rates, which will result in lower consumption and thermals. The reference card already boasts great consumption/performance ratio and Gainward’s GTX 680 Phantom consumes almost the same.
Power consumption and the two-display limit were a thorn in Nvidia’s backside for a while now. However, Nvidia finally addressed these issues and the GTX 680 allows for using all four video outs simultaneously.
About two weeks ago we tested Gainward’s reference GTX 680. The reference card is priced at about €475 in Europe, which is pricier than AMD’s HD 7970. Thankfully for AMD fans, we’ve seen significant price drops of HD 7970 cards and their US pricing has dropped from $549.99 to $469.99, so HD 7970 is more affordable than GTX 680. As for Europe, HD 7970 cards can be found priced at €400, which is some €60 less compared to the price we saw two weeks ago.
Bearing in mind pricing of HD 7970 cards, GTX 680 Phantom’s price of €526 seems a bit too steep. At the same time, this is about €60 more compared to the Gainward’s reference GTX 680 model. Other than that, Gainward's 680 Phantom 2GB card is most certainly a quality product that comes with special cooling and factory overclocking and will be a worthy companion for years to come.