The overall cooler design is similar to what we've seen before from Gainward, but the shroud is a little different. As always, though, the black and red combination looks really good.
A quick spin around the card will find the same 6-Pin PCI-E power connector we saw on the MSI GTX 550 Ti Cyclone II. This time it's on top of the card instead of the back, though. Across the top, but closer to the front we have a single SLI connector.
Connectivity in typical Gainward style is different to most other cards with a full size HDMI port, VGA and Dual-Link DVI port. It's a bit of a mixed bag for me as I think this is a little weaker than the two DVI adapters, especially since we don't have a mini-HDMI to DVI adapter included. Most, though, are going to find this connection setup fine.
Gainward has always been aggressive with the Golden Sample series and they've been especially aggressive recently with these mid-range offerings like the GTX 560 Ti. The GTX 550 Ti is no different with a default core clock of 1GHz, 50MHz up on the MSI GTX 550 Ti Cyclone II we looked at and 100MHz up on the default core.
The increased core speed means our Shader clock has bumped up to 2000MHz. The good news is that Gainward hasn't chosen to ignore the memory either, boosting that above reference and the MSI we looked at. Here we see the 1GB of GDDR5 carries with it a 4400MHz QDR memory clock.