GIVEAWAY: Gaming peripherals upgrade thanks to Corsair worth $280

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card

Galaxy has mixed it up a bit with the GTX 285. It boasts 2GB of glorious GDDR3 memory and a pretty kick ass cooler. Let's check it out!
@ShawnBakerTW
Published Fri, Apr 17 2009 1:12 AM CDT   |   Updated Fri, Sep 18 2020 10:50 PM CDT
Rating: 93%Manufacturer: Galaxy

Introduction


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card



It's good to see that not long after the launch of a new high-end product a company has come out and mixed it up a bit. While it's not uncommon for us to see higher end ATI cards make this transition quickly, it seems that NVIDIA partners tend to take longer or sometimes not even bother at all.

Of course, it doesn't help with the obscure PCB design on some of their cards like the GTX 295; fingers crossed that the rumors of a new single PCB dual GPU card is true.

We're not here to talk about that today, however. What we have with us is a GTX 285 which in the looks department manages to stand out from the pack. If that wasn't enough, Galaxy thought they would also take the time to strap on 2GB of memory.

In our normal style, before we get into the card and find out exactly what Galaxy has done, we'll have a quick look at the package and bundle to see if there's anything that stands out there first.

The Package




Checking out the box, we don't notice anything we haven't seen before with the same box design being used. The only difference is of course the stickers that Galaxy place on the box which let us differentiate the models. Across the top we have the Galaxy logo while the bottom right corner has a few NVIDIA logos.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


The middle of the box has an Xtreme Tuner sticker which lets us know that the software is included in the package. What this lets us do is overclock the card so that we can get a bit of extra performance out of it. Below that we can also see the model, in this case the GTX 285.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Turning the box over, we have a rundown of features that the GTX 200 series of cards offers along with a bit of information on PhysX. In the bottom corner we have a sticker that gives us the model of the card and below that some logos from a number of companies.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Looking at the cables, there isn't anything out of the ordinary; from the left we have two dual molex to 6-Pin PCI-E connectors, S/PDIF loopback cable, DVI to HDMI and DVI to VGA convertors along with an S-Video to component out convertor.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Along with the copy of Xtreme Tuner which we saw mentioned before, we also have a driver disc along with quick start and full manuals.

The Card




Looking at the card for the first time, there isn't a whole lot to see here thanks to the Arctic Xtreme cooler that Galaxy has opted for. It pretty much covers every inch of the card with us only really seeing three 92mm fans that span from one end of the card to the other.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


There's more to the cooler than just a few fans, though. We've got five heat-pipes that run under them to help move the heat away from the core and we have a huge number of aluminum fins. With the help of the fans the heat then gets taken off the card as quickly as possible.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Taking the time to quickly look around the card, we see there isn't anything else too out of the ordinary. Towards the back of the card we have two power connectors; one an 8-Pin while the other being a 6-Pin.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Closer to the front of the card we have two SLI connectors which give us the ability to run up to three cards. That might be a bit difficult, though, with the cooler taking up a bit of space on the motherboard and covering our second PCI-E 16x slot on the EX58-UD5.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Included in the connectivity department are two Dual-Link DVI connectors and a single S-Video out port. We can also see here there's a vent to let the hot air escape and behind it we can also see some of the copper heat pipes that are present on the card.


Specifications

As far as specifications go, there are two major changes in this GTX 285 from Galaxy. The first is the massive 2GB of memory they have chosen to include. The second is the memory clock; they have used slightly slower memory so they have had to decrease the clock to 2400MHz DDR instead of the stock 2484MHz DDR.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Apart from these two changes everything else is stock, which means the core comes in at 648MHz while the shader clock is 1476MHz. With the massive cooler on offer and the down clock in memory, it would have been nice to see Galaxy increase the core, but instead they have opted for something that should run quieter and cooler.

Test System Setup and 3DMark Vantage


Test System Setup

Processor(s): Intel i7 920 @ 3.8GHz (190MHz x 20)
Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P (Supplied by Noctua)
Motherboard(s): GIGABYTE EX58-UD5 (Supplied by GIGABYTE)
Memory: 3 X 2GB OCZ Technology PC-12800 DDR-3 8-8-8-24 (OCZ3G1600LV6GK)
Hard Disk(s): Western Digital 300GB Velicorapter (Supplied by Western Digital)
Operating System: Windows XP Professional SP2, Windows Vista SP1 64-Bit
Drivers: Catalyst 9.3, ForceWare 182.50


Today we'll take the time to see how the GTX 285 2GB from Galaxy compares against the newly released little brother, the GTX 275 and ATIs new top single GPU graphics card, the HD 4890.


3DMark Vantage

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.0.1
Developer Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com
Product Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com/products/3dmarkvantage/
Buy It Here




3DMark Vantage is the new industry standard PC gaming performance benchmark from Futuremark, newly designed for Windows Vista and DirectX10. It includes two new graphics tests, two new CPU tests, several new feature tests, and support for the latest hardware.

3DMark Vantage is based on a completely new rendering engine, developed specifically to take full advantage of DirectX10, the new graphics API from Microsoft.


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Under 3DMark Vantage we can see that the GTX 285 manages to pull out a nice lead over the other cards here.

Benchmarks - PT Boats: Knights of the Sea


PT Boats: Knights of the Sea

Version and / or Patch Used: Benchmark Demo
Developer Homepage: http://en.akella.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.pt-boats.net/





PT Boats: Knights of the Sea is a naval action simulator that places gamers in charge of a mosquito fleet of the Allied Forces, Russia or Germany during the height of World War II.

Using the latest Direct X 10 technology PT Boards - Knights of the Sea manages to apply a lot of stress to the components of today which in turn gives us quite an intensive benchmark.


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Under PT Boats we see a little jump in performance compared to the GTX 275. At the higher resolution we see the GTX 285 has a big jump on the HD 4890.

Benchmarks - CINEBENCH R10


CINEBENCH R10

Version and / or Patch Used: Release 10
Developer Homepage: http://www.maxon.net/
Product Homepage: http://www.maxon.net




CINEBENCH is a real-world test suite that assesses your computer's performace capabilities. MAXON CINEBENCH is based on MAXON's award-winning animation software, CINEMA 4D, which is used extensively by studios and production houses worldwide for 3D content creation. MAXON software has been used in blockbuster movies such as Spider-Man, Star Wars, The Chronicles of Narnia and many more.

MAXON CINEBENCH runs several tests on your computer to measure the performance of the main processor and the graphics card under real world circumstances. The benchmark application makes use of up to 16 CPUs or CPU cores and is available for Windows (32-bit and 64-Bit) and Macintosh (PPC and Intel-based).


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


We can see the extra memory does nothing for CINEBENCH performance, nor does the extra speed the GTX 285 offers.

Benchmarks - World in Conflict


World in Conflict

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.0.0.5
Timedemo or Level Used: Built-in Test
Developer Homepage: http://www.massive.se
Product Homepage: http://www.worldinconflict.com





World in Conflict is a real-time strategy video game by Massive Entertainment and to be published by Sierra Entertainment for Windows (DX9 and DX10) and the Xbox 360.

The game is set in 1989 where economic troubles cripple the Soviet Union and threaten to dissolve it. However, the title pursues a "what if" scenario where, in this case, the Soviet Union does not collapse and instead pursues a course of war to remain in power. It is an intensive new game is sure to put plenty of stress on even the latest graphics cards and we use the built-in benchmarking for our testing.


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Across the board we can see the GTX 285 comes out ahead. At the highest resolution we can see it's the only card that can get the 30 FPS minimum we like to see. With that said, the GTX 275 is only 1 FPS behind; the lead is higher in the average department, though.

Benchmarks - Crysis Warhead


Crysis Warhead

Version and / or Patch Used: unpatched
Timedemo or Level Used: Airfield
Developer Homepage: http://www.crytek.com
Product Homepage: http://crysiswarhead.ea.com/
Buy It Here




Crysis Warhead updates and refines the gameplay of the original game through a sidestory plot involving Psycho, one of previous protagonist Nomad's allies. The game is a parallel story that follows Sergeant Michael "Psycho" Sykes, a character from the original Crysis, as he faces his own trials and challenges on the other side of the island during the time period of the first game.

It also showcases a new, enhanced and optimized version of CryEngine 2 using full DX10 extensions and is the first game developed by Crytek's Budapest studio.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Across the board we can see the GTX 285 comes out on top with the best gains being seen at the lower resolution.

Benchmarks - Far Cry 2


Far Cry 2

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.01
Timedemo or Level Used: Ranch Long
Developer Homepage: http://www.ubi.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.farcry2.com/
Buy It Here




The Dunia Engine was built specifically for Far Cry 2 by the award-winning Ubisoft Montreal development team. It delivers the most realistic destructible environments, amazing special effects such as dynamic fire propagation and storm effects, real-time night-and-day cycle, dynamic music system, non-scripted enemy A.I. and so much more.


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


At the higher resolution the GTX 285 and GTX 275 are quite similar. At the lower resolutions, however, we see the GTX 285 from Galaxy has a couple of FPS jump on the lower end GTX 275.

Benchmarks - S.T.A.L.K.E.R. - Clear Sky


S.T.A.L.K.E.R. - Clear Sky

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.5.07
Timedemo or Level Used: Custom Timedemo
Developer Homepage: http://www.gsc-game.com/
Product Homepage: http://cs.stalker-game.com/en/
Buy It Here




S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, is the stand-alone prequel for S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl, a first-person shooter computer game by Ukrainian developer GSC Game World.[3] The game consists of a roughly 50/50 mix of new areas and old, remodeled areas from the previous game. The X-ray graphics engine has been updated to version 1.5 and includes DirectX 10 support (later patch 1.5.06 included DirectX 10.1). Additionally, the AI received an overhaul to accommodate the new faction wars feature.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Compared to the GTX 275 we can see a small jump in performance across the board. Here, though, we do see the HD 4890 pull out a win due to Clear Sky favoring the ATI offering.

Benchmarks - Left 4 Dead


Left 4 Dead

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update
Timedemo or Level Used: Custom Timedemo
Developer Homepage: http://www.valvesoftware.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.l4d.com/
Buy It Here




Left 4 Dead uses the latest version of Valve's Source engine, with improvements such as multi-core processor support and physics-based animation to more realistically portray hair and clothing, and to improve physics interaction with enemies when shot or shoved in different body parts. Animation was also improved to allow characters to lean realistically when moving in curved paths.

Rendering and artificial intelligence were scaled up to allow for greater number of enemies who can navigate the world in better ways, such as climbing, jumping or breaking obstacles. Lighting has been enhanced with new self-shadowing normal mapping and advanced shadow rendering that is important to convey information about the environment and player actions.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


We continue to see the GTX 285 come out ahead with it beating out the other two cards we have here today.

Benchmarks - High Quality AA and AF


High Quality AA and AF

Our high quality tests let us separate the men from the boys and the ladies from the girls. If the cards weren't struggling before they will start to now.


Far Cry 2

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Under FarCry 2 we can see an increase that equates to about 10% for the GTX 285.


World In Conflict

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


We again see the GTX 285 is able to jump up to that 30 FPS minimum we like.


Left 4 Dead

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Under Left 4 Dead we can see that all the cards perform quite close to each other.

Benchmarks - World in Conflict - XP


World in Conflict

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.0.0.5
Timedemo or Level Used: Built-in Test
Developer Homepage: http://www.massive.se
Product Homepage: http://www.worldinconflict.com




World in Conflict is a real-time strategy video game by Massive Entertainment and to be published by Sierra Entertainment for Windows (DX9 and DX10) and the Xbox 360.

The game is set in 1989 where economic troubles cripple the Soviet Union and threaten to dissolve it. However, the title pursues a "what if" scenario where, in this case, the Soviet Union does not collapse and instead pursues a course of war to remain in power. It is an intensive new game is sure to put plenty of stress on even the latest graphics cards and we use the built-in benchmarking for our testing.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Moving to XP we can see that the GTX 285 offers us a bump in performance at all resolutions.

Benchmarks - Far Cry 2 - XP


Far Cry 2

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.01
Timedemo or Level Used: Ranch Long
Developer Homepage: http://www.ubi.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.farcry2.com/
Buy It Here




The Dunia Engine was built specifically for Far Cry 2 by the award-winning Ubisoft Montreal development team. It delivers the most realistic destructible environments, amazing special effects such as dynamic fire propagation and storm effects, real-time night-and-day cycle, dynamic music system, non-scripted enemy A.I. and so much more.


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


We continue to see that same performance increase from the GTX 285 which equates to 10% most the time. We can see that we sit closer to that 30 FPS minimum at the higher resolution with the 2GB GTX 285.

Benchmarks - S.T.A.L.K.E.R. - Clear Sky - XP


S.T.A.L.K.E.R. - Clear Sky

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.5.07
Timedemo or Level Used: Custom Timedemo
Developer Homepage: http://www.gsc-game.com/
Product Homepage: http://cs.stalker-game.com/en/
Buy It Here




S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, is the stand-alone prequel for S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl, a first-person shooter computer game by Ukrainian developer GSC Game World.[3] The game consists of a roughly 50/50 mix of new areas and old, remodeled areas from the previous game. The X-ray graphics engine has been updated to version 1.5 and includes DirectX 10 support (later patch 1.5.06 included DirectX 10.1). Additionally, the AI received an overhaul to accommodate the new faction wars feature.

Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


We again see that compared to the NVIDA offerings, the ATI is able to pull a win under Clear Sky.

Temperature and Sound Tests


Temperature Tests



With the TES 1326 Infrared Thermometer literally in hand we found ourselves getting real-world temperatures from the products we test at load (3D clock speeds).

There are two places we pull temperature from - the back of the card directly behind the core and if the card is dual slot and has an exhaust point we also pull a temperate from there, as seen in the picture.


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


The cooler does a fantastic job of keeping temperatures on the higher end GTX 285 down.


Sound Tests



Pulling out the TES 1350A Sound Level Meter we find ourselves quickly yelling into the top of it to see how loud we can be.

After five minutes of that we get a bit more serious and place the device two CM away from the fan on the card to find the maximum noise level of the card when idle (2D mode) and in load (3D mode).


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


The low temperature doesn't come at the cost of noise either, with the card coming out as the quietest.

Power Consumption Tests






Using our new PROVA Power Analyzer WM-01 or "Power Thingy" as it has become quickly known as to our readers, we are now able to find out what kind of power is being used by our test system and the associated graphics cards installed. Keep in mind; it tests the complete system (minus LCD monitor, which is plugged directly into AC wall socket).

There are a few important notes to remember though; while our maximum power is taken in 3DMark06 at the same exact point, we have seen in particular tests the power being drawn as much as 10% more. We test at the exact same stage every time; therefore tests should be very consistent and accurate.

The other thing to remember is that our test system is bare minimum - only a 7,200RPM SATA-II single hard drive is used without CD ROM or many cooling fans.

So while the system might draw 400 watts in our test system, placing it into your own PC with a number of other items, the draw is going to be higher.


Galaxy GeForce GTX 285 2GB Tri-Fan Graphics Card


We can see that at load all the cards sit quite similar together. At idle, though, the NVIDIA ones sit over 30 Watts lower.

Final Thoughts




The only thing bigger than the amount of memory on the 2GB GTX 285 from Galaxy is the cooler which doesn't just look good, but offers some seriously low numbers in the cooling department without the cost of extra noise.

The only real gripe we have with the card is the clocks. While we can understand that the memory speed had to be dropped to get 2GB of GDDR3 on the card, it would have been nice to see Galaxy increase the core to help combat the lower clock speeds. Considering the cooling power of the Arctic Xtreme and the numbers we're seeing in both the temperature and noise department, the extra performance should have come at no real extra cost.

With that said, though, Galaxy has of course included its own Xtreme Tuner software that gives you the ability to crank up the speeds of your card. It's not hard or that time consuming to get the core speed up and some extra FPS which would help us see the lead over the GTX 275 increase by more than the 10% average we're seeing here at the moment.

The Galaxy GTX 285 2GB w/ Artic Xtreme cooling really is a great card that packs some serious punch. If you're not only looking for the quietest GTX 285 we've tested to date, but also the coolest, this is simply a fantastic option.

What do TweakTown awards and ratings mean? Click!

PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.

USUnited States: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com

UKUnited Kingdom: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.co.uk

AUAustralia: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com.au

CACanada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.ca

DEDeutschland: Finde andere Technik- und Computerprodukte wie dieses auf Amazon.de

Shawn takes care of all of our video card reviews. From 2009, Shawn is also taking care of our memory reviews, and from May 2011, Shawn also takes care of our CPU, chipset and motherboard reviews. As of December 2011, Shawn is based out of Taipei, Taiwan.

We openly invite the companies who provide us with review samples / who are mentioned or discussed to express their opinion. If any company representative wishes to respond, we will publish the response here. Please contact us if you wish to respond.

Related Tags

Newsletter Subscription
Latest News
View More News
Latest Reviews
View More Reviews
Latest Articles
View More Articles