Our impressions about the Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan are rather ambiguous. On one hand, it is undoubtedly the fastest single-GPU graphics card available today. Its power consumption isn’t much higher compared to earlier flagship products from both AMD and Nvidia and it is even less noisy. It supports every technology implemented in the GeForce GTX 680 and introduces some more (GPU Boost 2.0, for example). And its performance is really astonishing as it adds some 50% (or even more) to the speed of the ex-flagship GeForce GTX 680. In the last years we haven’t seen such a dramatic improvement in sheer speed even between two generations of GPUs, let alone between GPUs from the same family. The GeForce GTX Titan was meant to prove Nvidia’s technological superiority and it does that in a spectacular fashion.
On the other hand, the GeForce GTX Titan is priced very high. Being 10-20% slower than the dual-processor GeForce GTX 690, it comes at the same recommended price and will probably be more expensive in retail for the next couple of months. Moreover, people who don’t mind AFR rendering may prefer a CrossFireX configuration built out of two Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition which is going to be faster in the majority of games, even though hotter and more power-hungry (these latter factors are secondary for owners of such premium-class graphics subsystems anyway). Thus, the GeForce GTX Titan looks like a perfect luxury product yet its price doesn’t seem justifiable. By the way, if you are into such expensive toys, you may be interested to know that Nvidia claims three GeForce GTX Titan cards to be faster than two GeForce GTX 690s.
The GPU Boost 2.0 technology raises some questions, too. Overclocking is now more difficult while the card’s performance depends more on its temperature. Non-reference Titans with original coolers would be especially interesting but we don’t think they will ever come out. But since there’s still a lot of time until the next generation of GPUs, Nvidia might think about pleasing its fans with a GeForce GTX 685 that would have a 384-bit bus and 4 GB of memory because the GeForce GTX 680 doesn’t look strong against the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition which has grown faster and less expensive.