It's winter and here we have a frosty looking card from Zotac. It is an RTX 3070 Twin Edge OC White edition. In this article we will go over specs, look and feel, as well as its performance. Let's dive right in.
In the box we find the usual documentation pack which includes a user manual, some marketing material and very shiny stickers. Going further we find the graphics card itself and it is definitely looking clean, although slightly odd in shape, more on that later on.
There’s also two dual 6 pin to 8 pin cables… and… sorry Zotac - these are pretty ugly. Why not spend just a few extra cents and have these painted black, or even better - white? Considering people buying white cards are likely doing it for aesthetic reasons. Except for right now - as people will likely be buying it as soon as it’s in stock.
Anyway - moving on to the card itself. As this is RTX 3070 - it features 5888 Cuda cores and 8 GB of GDDR6 VRAM clocked at 14 Gigabits per second on a 256 bit memory bus. This card has an official boost clock of 1755 MHz but I can confirm that on average it is staying closer to 2000 MHz.
Other features include 2nd gen ray tracing cores, as well as 3rd gen tensor cores. Just like most other modern cards, it also includes a fan stop mode that kicks in when the card goes below 55 degrees or so, making it silent. Zotac also has software called Firestorm that helps with controlling the fan curves as well as overclocking.
Port wise we have 3 Display 1.4 ports and 1 HDMI 2.1 port. To power the 220Watt card there are two 8 pin ports with connections that are recessed lower in the card and are a bit of a pain to plug in to, especially if you are using 6+2 power connectors. Pro tip is to plug in the 2 pin cable first and then the 6 pin.
As you might have noticed by now it is a rather strange sized card. It’s only two slots wide and reasonably short in comparison to more standard design but still very tall. It seems like ZOTAC is mainly aiming this card for small form factor PCs.
The placement of power connectors is welcome in builds where this card is placed vertically, this particular positioning completely hides the power cables, making it look super clean. To be honest, this is where the card really shines, it has a very clean aesthetic that seamlessly wraps around the edges. There is nothing crazy about it, even the light on the side is simply white rather than RGB. While I appreciate the minimalist look, I would have preferred support for RGB just to have it as an option.
Right, enough talk about looks. How does this card actually perform? We used our Ryzen 9 bench to minimise any CPU bottlenecks and here you can see the full list of items used for this testing:
In CS:GO we see averages above 300 FPS while at 4K and over 370 FPS in 1080p. The 1 percentiles are 180 to 200 FPS, so in e-sports titles it is more than anybody really needs.
Moving on to Shadow of The Tomb Raider we see very interesting scaling. At 1080p we hit 173 FPS, in 1440p we get 120 and at 4k it is at 65 FPS. The one percentiles are also pretty strong across the board. Basically you can enjoy this game on a 4k screen at standard 60 FPS or play it on a high refresh rate monitor with lower resolution.
Next we have Total War Three Kingdoms and the results are very similar: 156 FPS at 1080p, 111 FPS at 1440p and 61 FPS at 4k. A thing to note - one percentiles are about 20 frames lower than average. While you can easily play at 1080p or 1440p - the same cannot be said about 4k as you will definitely experience stuttering.
And lastly another triple A title - Horizon Zero Dawn. In this game the 1080p and 1440p results are pretty close with 117 and 105 FPS respectively. 4k is 63 FPS and just like in Total War Three Kingdoms due to sub 60FPS 1 percentiles there will be stuttering but not as much.
FPS is a great tool when analysing performance but we always need to account for thermal and noise performance as well. It's all good and well to have a fast card but if it runs hot or sounds like a jet taking off, gaming may not be a good experience. For these tests we ran Heaven benchmark and the card temperature hit high 60s very quickly but hovered there. In terms of boost it stayed around 1900 MHz which is pretty good especially for a dual fan card of this size.
Where this card falls a little behind is acoustics, during this test it peaked at 45.6 dBa which is not crazy loud but for a comparison a larger RTX 3070 TUF Gaming from ASUS only peaked at 41 dBa.
With all of this said and done, is this card worth your money? Well, right now - this card will fly off the shelf even if it wasn't, as NVIDIA and their partners can’t seem to meet the demand, so no matter what they will sell like hot cakes. However once things stabilise and finally all cards are available, then it would depend on your requirements.
If you need a small card that can fit in most mini ITX cases, or you are looking for specifically a white card then this one is a strong candidate, on the other hand if you want the absolute best performance and happy to pay a bit extra then a card with a larger cooler may be a better choice to keep both temperatures and acoustics down.