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This card is kind of a mixed bag. It has the same GPU chip as the GTX 580 and 570 but just with slightly fewer shader processors. This means that it’s essentially a GTX 570 that didn’t quite make the grade. Some might think this is a bad thing but it really isn’t. With nVidia releasing these chips into the market it has the effect of reducing prices by increasing competition.
One thing that’s interesting though is that this card is very similarly priced to the GTX 570. Our benchmarks showed that there is only a marginal difference between this card and the 570 in terms of performance. NVidia’s drivers have consistently improved performance on these cards and the 570 performs slightly better than this new GTX 560. As you can see in our benchmarks the 570 was just able to pull ahead of this new card. These cards are priced only about 25 to 30 dollars apart, with the 570 priced higher. This means that for about 25 to 30 dollars more you will get slightly better performance. It really comes down to how much you can afford to spend and what your budget looks like. This price difference is consistent with the difference in price. It’s the 580 that doesn’t really add up in terms of price versus performance. The price difference between that card and this new one just doesn’t quite add up.
To wrap this up let me first say that Zotac has done a great job with this card. It does use a slightly modified reference design but it looks good and stays fairly cool. This is something that nVidia has really improved on from their previous generation of cards. I’m sure there are those that can remember the blow dryers that passed for the 400 series cooling solution. Not only were they loud but they didn’t cool all that well either. These cards are a totally different story and Zotac was smart enough not to tamper too much with what already worked. With the way these cards are designed though, they are going to exhaust a fair amount of the hot air into your case. For this reason I would strongly suggest that you have a case that is able to provide adequate air flow. When nVidia first released these new cards I was kind of thinking that it was a bit of a waste. I’m now thinking that this will give gamers more options to choose from and that’s never a bad thing.