Details of Nvidia's GeForce GTX 660 OEM have been released, providing the first clue of what manufacturers looking for a cut-price Nvidia-manufactured equivalent to the recently-launched GeForce GTX 660 Ti
will be getting.
Based on the same GK104 Kepler-based GPU as the Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 Ti, those expecting equivalent performance are likely to be disappointed: according to Nvidia's figures, the OEM version drops the number of CUDA cores down to 1,152 from 1,344 and the number of texture units down to 96 from 112. The clock speed also takes a hit, with the core clock dropping to 832MHz from 915MHz and the boost speed dropping to 888MHz from 980MHz.
The OEM cards include GDDR5 memory on the same - sadly limiting - 192-bit bus as their bigger brother, but running at 5.8GHz rather than the 6GHz-and-change of the Ti model. There's also no 2GB version available, with OEMs given the choice of cheaping out on a 1.5GB model or wowing buyers with big numbers by packing 3GB of GDDR5 graphics RAM into their systems.
It's not all bad news, of course: the GK104 is the same 28nm TSMC-manufactured part as found on the Ti, albeit with some hardware disabled - and that has a benefit in reduced power draw, with the GeForce GTX 660 OEM given an official thermal design profile of 130W to the GeForce GTX 660 Ti's 150W. That latter could be of quite some interest to system builders: no other Kepler card comes in at less than 150W [EDIT: except the power-sipping 65W GT 640
and its OEM-only GT 645 counterpart] and the GeForce GTX 660 OEM simplifies wiring by requiring only a single PCI Express power connector.
The quiet launch of the GeForce GTX 660 OEM suggests that Nvidia may be planning to offer parts with similar specifications to its hardware partners for the launch of a non-Ti retail GTX 660. Assuming the disabled hardware doesn't cause too much of a performance drop, and hoping that board builders can get the price down to near £200, Nvidia could be on to a winner with that plan.
For now, however, the GeForce GTX 660 remains an OEM-only part, with no official news of a retail launch. Pricing is also being kept very quiet, with Nvidia silent about just how much OEMs will save over buying the more powerful GeForce GTX 660 Ti for their gaming rigs.
Full specifications for the board are available on Nvidia's website