Graphics Cards Guide

Sparkle Calibre X580 review

Sparkle Calibre X580 - GTX 580 on Steroids

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Overall rating 8.5/10
Effective cooler
Impressive overclocking
Could do with higher clock speeds
Takes up three expansion slots

Test Setup & Results

Test Setup

To evaluate the Sparkle Calibre X580, we’ll be using our X58 setup with the following specifications:

  • Intel Core i7-975 (3.33GHz)
  • Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD4P motherboard
  • 3 x 1GB DDR3-1333 G.Skill memory in triple channel mode
  • Seagate 7200.10 200GB SATA hard drive
  • Windows 7 Ultimate

Obviously, the key comparison here would be between the Sparkle Calibre X580 and a reference NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580. Given the modest bump in clock speeds, we are not hoping for massive improvements in performance. What we are more interested in, however, is how cool the card will run and whether that will allow for better overclocking.

And since we’ve already established the performance of a reference GeForce GTX 580 in our earlier article, we have decided to cutback on the number of tests for this card rather than running the usual suite of benchmarking tests. As such, we'll be testing only 3DMark Vantage, Crysis Warhead, Far Cry 2 and Battlefield Bad Company 2. These games will give us a good idea of the card’s performance.

Here's the list of cards tested and driver versions used:

  • Sparkle Calibre X580 1560MB GDDR5 (ForceWare 262.99)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 1560MB GDDR5 (ForceWare 262.99)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480 1560MB GDDR5 (ForceWare 260.89 )
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 470 1280MB GDDR5 (ForceWare 258.96)
  • ATI Radeon HD 5970 2GB GDDR5 (Catalyst 10.9)
  • AMD Radeon HD 6870 1GB GDDR5 (Catalyst 10.10)
  • ATI Radeon HD 5870 1GB GDDR5 (Catalyst 10.9)

The list of benchmarks used are as follows:

  • Futuremark 3DMark Vantage
  • Crysis Warhead
  • Far Cry 2
  • Battlefield Bad Company 2