At last. At pigging last a decent review pitting it against other cards of the ilk.
Being brutally frank I am still not sold. I would still rather have the lightning for its build quality, back plate and (IMO) better cooling solution.
I would say hats off to Nvidia but I can't. Mostly because I feel for those who bought the 480 who really should have got this card.
Is it a good card? yes. But there are still forks in the road that lead to where it is now.
There is one great part to this card though. 4 series cards are now dropping through the floor in prices. This morning I stopped over at OCUK only to find they are selling the EVGA 460 1gb for £135 or so. This is actually the most awesome part to come from the 5 series launch. Most of the 4 series were very fast cards. Obviously the 460 doesn't need any fettling to get right but the 470 can now be had, with a Gelid Icyvision (which isn't the best cooler but does make it behave) for £200. And the 470 beats the 5850 by quite a margin (in all of the tests and reviews it only lost in Anno whatever the heck that was, taking a clear lead in absolutely everything else).
Again, you guys absolutely rock. I love this review because it gives a very good understanding of exactly what this card can do when pitted against the cards that are in the same pricing bracket AND the one that was the pre 'what the 480 should have been'.
So a big thankyou as always. I can't quite put my finger on it but there's just something very honest and very real about OC3D reviews that I can't seem to find anywhere else. Maybe it's the fact that the reviewers here (and IMO Bryan above all else, sorry other reviewers !
) are so passionate about the job in hand. I mean, there I was last night literally with my hands together praying that the lightning could be used in this review. And there it is.