Although we've seen plenty of good things from Nvidia's latest GeForce GTX 570 and 580, both cards are too pricey for the mainstream bracket as many gamers prefer to spend less than $300 on a GPU upgrade. For those folks, AMD is currently offering the Radeon HD 6870 and HD 6850 graphics cards ($240 and $180, respectively) while Nvidia's solution consists of the 6-month-old GeForce GTX 460 768MB ($160) and 1GB ($200).
It was only a matter of time until Nvidia added a mainstream performance graphics card to its GTX 500 series, and today we have that product. Known as the GeForce GTX 560 Ti, this new graphics card will retail for $250, placing it in direct competition with the Radeon HD 6870.
Earlier this month some users discovered the GeForce GTX 560 Ti when sifting through the leaked 266.44 GeForce driver. The discovery of the upcoming graphics card in itself wasn't that interesting as we all knew it was coming. What did catch our attention was the departure from traditional naming conventions by resurrecting a suffix that has been dormant since the GeForce 4 Ti 4800 and Ti 4600. Those products date as back as 2002.
The GeForce 4 Ti 4200 is perhaps the most remembered product from this family. The card went down as a legendary offering due to its attractive pricing and excellent overclocking abilities.
Maybe Nvidia is trying to send a subliminal message, wanting to put their new GeForce GTX 560 Ti in a similar light to the now ancient GeForce 4 Ti 4200. Whatever the case may be, you won't hear us complaining if they decide to deliver great value on a performance oriented mainstream card.
Our friends over at Gigabyte were kind enough to send us their revision of the GeForce GTX 560 Ti, which we've put to the test against 15 other offerings in all price ranges to get you the full picture on today's GPU landscape.