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Sparkle GeForce GTX 465 Video Card

Packaging and A Closer Look

box-front Packaging for video cards walks a fine line; it has to be attention-getting without going overboard. Sparkle’s done a good job of it here; the stylized S logo stands out against the background of muted blues and purples. The usual spray of feature logos is kept to a minimum as well, while giving you all the essential info. GPU model, amount and type of ram, display connectors, and what bits of software you’re getting; all are represented in a minimum amount of space.
Opening the box up, we find the card encased in anti-static bubble wrap. Peeling that back, we find… box-open
accessories The card itself, with the usual array of accessories. Included with this card are the quick install guide, driver disc, a special HDMI cable with a mini-plug on one end, VGA dongle and two 6-pin PCI Express adapter cables. Note that each requires two 4-pin MOLEX plugs to function, so if your PSU does not have the proper cables already, you will have to give up a whopping four MOLEX plugs to the task of powering this card.
One thing that becomes clear on inspecting this card: it is huge. Don’t even bother trying to stuff this into a mini-tower or SFF case, it won’t have room to breathe. cooler
intake Appropriately enough, the front-facing end of the card consists of one giant intake vent for cool air. If you can position an intake case fan to blow onto this end, so much the better.
As you can see, two six-pin power connectors are required to give this card the necessary juice. Note that the pin configuration on these plugs is different than many other six-pin plugs; you may find yourself forced to employ the MOLEX converters even with a fairly modern power supply. pcie-power
sli-connectors Though mostly hidden from view by the bulk of the cooler, the SLI connectors here allow for 3-way SLI.
Looking at the rear-facing end of the card, we find a mini-HDMI port sharing space with two DVI-I ports on one slot, while the other slot is devoted entirely to exhausting hot air from the cooler. Getting at the mini-HDMI port is awkward with both DVI ports in use, but since this card doesn’t support more than two displays at a time, that isn’t the problem it might seem to be. ports-and-exhaust
pcb-back Moving to the back,there are a couple of things to note. First, there is absolutely no space to spare on this card. Solder junctions, diodes and traces make it clear that every millimeter of the PCB is there for a reason.

Second, note the perforation in the card near the intake end. This unusual feature gives the fan more air to cool the card. This is neither accidental nor superfluous; Fermi-based cards run hot.

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