Is NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 580 more of the same or is this new card the turning point for NVIDIA? Lets take a look at a couple of reviews to find out how this new model compares to AMD's latest graphics card. Our first stop is AnandTech, as usual they've published an in-depth review that takes a look at all aspects of the GeForce GTX 580. The site concludes this card is what the GeForce GTX 480 should have been, it's a refined Fermi that offers decent performance at much lower noise and heat levels than its predecessor. The new card features a better cooling solution but also employs new power monitoring hardware that will dynamically adjust performance in certain stress applications like Furmark or OCCT to prevent the board from having excessive power draw.
What we’re left with today is something much closer to the “traditional” state of the GPU market: NVIDIA has the world’s fastest single-GPU card, while AMD is currently nipping at their heels with multi-GPU products. Both the Radeon HD 5970 and Radeon HD 6870 CF are worthy competitors to the GTX 580 – they’re faster and in the case of the 6870 CF largely comparable in terms of power/temperature/noise. If you have a board capable of supporting a pair of 6870s and don’t mind the extra power it’s hard to go wrong, but only if you’re willing to put up with the limitations of a multi-GPU setup. It’s a very personal choice – we’d be willing to trade the performance for the simplicity of avoiding a multi-GPU setup, but we can’t speak for everyone.
With that said, we don't entirely consider any current multi-card solution a truly direct competitor for the GeForce GTX 580. For one thing, the GTX 580 would make a heckuva building block for an SLI setup itself, and that would be one very powerful solution, likely with decent acoustics, too. (Note to self: test ASAP.) For another, we know that AMD's Cayman GPU is coming very soon, and it should present more formidable competition for Nvidia's new hotness.
In fact, we don't yet have enough information to evaluate the GTX 580 properly just yet. This card is a nice advancement over the GTX 480, but is it improved enough to hold off Cayman? If the rumors are true, we may know the answer before the month is out.
Another interesting review can be read at Legit Reviews, they consider the GeForce GTX 580 a GeForce GTX 480 done right:
The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 video card has better performance, makes less noise, runs cooler and draws less power than the GTX 480. We honestly love this card and it really sucks for NVIDIA that the original GeForce GTX 470 wasn't designed this way. The performance of the GeForce GTX 580 was great and we constantly saw double digit performance gains in many of the games and applications that we benchmarked. Overclocking performance was also good as we were able to get another ~10% or so from a card that was already at the top of the performance charts for single GPU performance.