Notebookcheck

Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini Graphics Card SLI Configuration Review

Sebastian Bade (translated by Bernie Pechlaner), 08/12/2017

Does SLI make sense? To answer this question, we conduct an experiment with two Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini Graphic Cards. In our short review we'll check out the pros and cons of an SLI configuration and compare the performance to those of single GPU systems.

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For our test, we use two Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini Graphics Cards. It's important to check first which GPUs actually support the technology: the GeForce GTX 1070 happens to be the lowest model in the Pascal lineup; the more powerful GTX 1080GTX 1080 Ti and both Titan version (X und XP) support SLI as well. Users who own an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 are stuck and can't improve the performance by adding a second card.

The Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini Graphics Card has a specially-designed PCB which is very compact and should find room even in smaller cases. The fan system is different from Nvidia's reference design GeForce GTX 1070 Founders Editionso the noise level is more pleasant as well. The GPU is based on the GP104 chip and produced using 16nm technology. The GDDR5 VRAM is connected using a 256-bit interface, which in turn allows a maximum bandwidth of 256 GB/s.

Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini (SLI configuration)
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini (SLI configuration)
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini (SLI configuration)
Nvidia SLI HB Bridge
Nvidia SLI HB Bridge
Nvidia SLI HB Bridge
Specifications GTX 1050 Mini GTX 1050 Ti KFA2 GTX 1060 6 GB GTX 1070 FE Zotac GTX 1070 Mini GTX 1080 FE
Chip GP107 GP107 GP106 GP104 GP104 GP104
Manufactured 14 nm 14 nm 16 nm 16 nm 16 nm 16 nm
Shader 640 768 1.280 1.920 1.920 2.560
Texture Units 40 48 80 120 120 160
GPU Base Clock 1354 MHz 1290 MHz 1518 MHz 1506 MHz 1518 MHz 1607 MHz
GPU Boost Clock 1455 MHz 1392 MHz 1733 MHz 1683 MHz 1708 MHz 1733 MHz
Memory Bus 128 Bit 128 Bit 192 Bit 256 Bit 256 Bit 256 Bit
Memory Bandwidth 112 GB/s 112 GB/s 192 GB/s 256 GB/s 256 GB/s 320 GB/s
Memory Size 2 GB 4 GB 6 GB 8 GB 8 GB 8 GB
Power (Watt) 75 W 75 W 120 W 150 W 150 W 180 W

The Test System

Our test unit is AMD based and consists of a Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370 Gaming 5 with an AMD RYZEN 7 1800X CPU, which provides ample performance. The 16 GB of system RAM are from Corsair. The monitor Acer Predator XB321HK supports UHD and can handle all possible screen resolutions. Many thanks to AMD, who supplied the test system for our review.

Case Corsair Carbide Air 540 ATX Cube
Processor AMD RYZEN 7 1800X
RAM Corsair Vengeance 16 GB DDR4 3000 MHz
Mainboard Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370 Gaming 5
Monitor Acer Predator XB321HK 4K
SSD ADATA SP900 M.2 SSD
HDD 2 TB Western Digital
OS Microsoft Windows 10 Professional 64-Bit
Driver ForceWare 384.80

CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z

Clock Speeds

The clock speeds of the Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini are marginally higher than what Nvidia specifies. The GPU runs at a base frequency of 1518 MHz and an average Boost speed of 1708 MHz. The VRAM speed of 8 GHz on the other hand is identical to that of the "Founders Edition".

Our test shows that even at the default setting, the Boost speed actually reaches 1835 MHz. The GPU maintains this speed over longer periods at a temperature of 83 °C, which means that throttling isn't necessary even at higher load levels.

GPU-Z
GPU-Z
GPU-Z
GPU-Z
GPU-Z
GPU-Z

Synthetic Benchmarks

As far as the synthetic benchmarks are concerned, the SLI combo of two Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini GPUs outperforms its competition. The Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti isn't too far behind, however. A comparison with the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Founders Edition shows that our SLI test system is faster by somewhere between 30 and 90 %. The conclusion: multiple-GPU support depends heavily on the chosen application as well as the drivers.

3DMark Ice Storm
3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited
3DMark Ice Storm Extreme
3DMark Cloud Gate
3DMark Sky Diver
3DMark Fire Strike
3DMark Fire Strike Extreme
3DMark Fire Strike Ultra
3DMark Time Spy
3DMark 11
Unigine Valley
Unigine Heaven
3DMark
Fire Strike Extreme Graphics
Desktop PC Ryzen 7 1800X + Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 SLI
16413 Points ∼100%
Desktop PC Intel Xeon E5 2680v4 KFA2 GTX 1060 6GB
6022 Points ∼37% -63%
AMD Radeon RX 480 8 GB Reference
5444 Points ∼33% -67%
Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 2GB
3199 Points ∼19% -81%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Desktop PC Ryzen 7 1800X + Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 SLI
34226 Points ∼100%
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition
28366 Points ∼83% -17%
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Founders Edition
17899 Points ∼52% -48%
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Founders Edition 6 GB
12984 Points ∼38% -62%
Desktop PC Intel Xeon E5 2680v4 KFA2 GTX 1060 6GB
12648 Points ∼37% -63%
AMD Radeon RX 480 8 GB Reference
12186 Points ∼36% -64%
MSI RX 470 Gaming X 4GB
11869 Points ∼35% -65%
MSI GeForce GTX 1050 Ti
7696 Points ∼22% -78%
Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 2GB
6797 Points ∼20% -80%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
Desktop PC Ryzen 7 1800X + Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 SLI
140180 Points ∼100%
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Founders Edition
104764 Points ∼75% -25%
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Founders Edition 6 GB
80879 Points ∼58% -42%
AMD Radeon RX 480 8 GB Reference
72213 Points ∼52% -48%
Desktop PC Intel Xeon E5 2680v4 KFA2 GTX 1060 6GB
72074 Points ∼51% -49%
MSI RX 470 Gaming X 4GB
66398 Points ∼47% -53%
MSI GeForce GTX 1050 Ti
50939 Points ∼36% -64%
Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 2GB
40922 Points ∼29% -71%
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Desktop PC Ryzen 7 1800X + Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 SLI
42691 Points ∼100%
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition
38959 Points ∼91% -9%
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Founders Edition
23990 Points ∼56% -44%
AMD Radeon RX 480 8 GB Reference
17919 Points ∼42% -58%
MSI RX 470 Gaming X 4GB
17738 Points ∼42% -58%
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Founders Edition 6 GB
17401 Points ∼41% -59%
Desktop PC Intel Xeon E5 2680v4 KFA2 GTX 1060 6GB
17174 Points ∼40% -60%
MSI GeForce GTX 1050 Ti
9694 Points ∼23% -77%
Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 2GB
8571 Points ∼20% -80%

Legend

 
Desktop PC Ryzen 7 1800X + Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 SLI AMD Ryzen 7 1800X, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop),
 
AMD Radeon RX 480 8 GB Reference Intel Core i7-4790K, AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop), Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
 
MSI RX 470 Gaming X 4GB Intel Core i7-4790K, AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
 
MSI GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Intel Core i7-4790K, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
 
Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 2GB Intel Core i7-4790K, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
 
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Founders Edition Intel Core i7-4790K, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
 
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Founders Edition 6 GB Intel Core i7-6700K, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop),
 
Desktop PC Intel Xeon E5 2680v4 KFA2 GTX 1060 6GB Intel Xeon E5-2680 v4, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop), Samsung SM951 MZHPV512HDGL m.2 PCI-e
 
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition Intel Core i7-4790K, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop), Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000

Gaming Benchmarks

When it comes to actual gaming, the picture changes markedly with the SLI system trailing the single GPU by at times significant margins. A good example here is "Far Cry Primal". On the other hand, SLI works very well for some games and the performance difference is substantial. Case in point: when running "Rise oft the Tomb Raider" and "The Division", frame rates increase by about 50 %. The Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti is still the measure of all things and outperforms our SLI combo except when playing "GTA V". Here, the high-performance single GPU is marginally slower.

A check of the recorded frames per second - see the table below - reveals a sea of green. Even at 4K resolutions, games remain perfectly playable even with the preset "high" selected. The one caveat: under 60 FPS, playback can stutter slightly, although the perceived severity is highly individual and varies from person to person. Thanks to the HB Bridge, micro stuttering should technically have been all but eliminated, but subjectively, it still occurs. The two diagrams below clearly show that the SLI system suffers from much higher frame times than the single GPU solution, which in turn leads to a "choppy" gameplay even when the FPS rate seems to be sufficiently high.

Frame times Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 (Rise of the Tomb Raider - 4K "High Preset")
Frame times Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 (Rise of the Tomb Raider - 4K "High Preset")
Frame times SLI system with two Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 (Rise of the Tomb Raider - 4K "High Preset")
Frame times SLI system with two Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 (Rise of the Tomb Raider - 4K "High Preset")
Far Cry Primal - 1920x1080 Ultra Preset AA:SM
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
121 (min: 81) fps ∼100% +109%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
90 (min: 72) fps ∼74% +55%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop), 6700K
67 fps ∼55% +16%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
59 (min: 47) fps ∼49% +2%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
58 (min: 44) fps ∼48%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
54 (min: 43) fps ∼45% -7%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
41 (min: 32) fps ∼34% -29%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
38 (min: 30) fps ∼31% -34%
BioShock Infinite - 1920x1080 Ultra Preset, DX11 (DDOF)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
215 fps ∼100% +8%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
199.5 fps ∼93%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
152 fps ∼71% -24%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
110 (min: 20) fps ∼51% -45%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
79 (min: 45) fps ∼37% -60%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
71.6 (min: 46) fps ∼33% -64%
Rise of the Tomb Raider - 1920x1080 Very High Preset AA:FX AF:16x
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
161 (min: 148) fps ∼100% +16%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
139.2 (min: 133) fps ∼86%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
94 (min: 85) fps ∼58% -32%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop), 6700K
66.9 fps ∼42% -52%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop), 6700K
66.5 fps ∼41% -52%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
57 (min: 49) fps ∼35% -59%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
54.3 (min: 49) fps ∼34% -61%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
40.7 (min: 37) fps ∼25% -71%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
36.9 (min: 34) fps ∼23% -73%
The Witcher 3 - 1920x1080 Ultra Graphics & Postprocessing (HBAO+)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
98 (min: 83) fps ∼100% +34%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
73.1 (min: 14) fps ∼75%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
62 fps ∼63% -15%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop), 6700K
44.4 fps ∼45% -39%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
43.9 (min: 40) fps ∼45% -40%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
40.7 (min: 35) fps ∼42% -44%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
27.5 (min: 22) fps ∼28% -62%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
24.1 (min: 18) fps ∼25% -67%
Deus Ex Mankind Divided - 1920x1080 Ultra Preset AA:2xMS AF:8x
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
73 (min: 57) fps ∼100% +10%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
66.5 (min: 40) fps ∼91%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
33.4 (min: 26) fps ∼46% -50%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
28.4 (min: 22) fps ∼39% -57%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
22.8 (min: 18) fps ∼31% -66%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
21.4 (min: 14) fps ∼29% -68%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
12 fps ∼16% -82%
Watch Dogs 2 - 1920x1080 Ultra Preset
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
93 (min: 71) fps ∼100% +4%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
89.1 fps ∼96%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
40.6 (min: 32) fps ∼44% -54%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
37.4 (min: 29) fps ∼40% -58%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
28.5 (min: 22) fps ∼31% -68%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
20 (min: 16) fps ∼22% -78%
Battlefield 1 - 1920x1080 Ultra Preset AA:T
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
158 (min: 141) fps ∼100% +14%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
138.9 (min: 131) fps ∼88%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
89.4 (min: 76) fps ∼57% -36%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
88.5 (min: 72) fps ∼56% -36%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
83 (min: 73) fps ∼53% -40%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
62.4 (min: 53) fps ∼39% -55%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
39 (min: 34) fps ∼25% -72%
Resident Evil 7 - 1920x1080 Very High / On AA:FXAA+T
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
222 (min: 190) fps ∼100% +43%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
155.7 (min: 131) fps ∼70%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
112 (min: 90) fps ∼50% -28%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
58.4 (min: 48) fps ∼26% -62%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
47.5 (min: 33) fps ∼21% -69%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
37.6 (min: 25) fps ∼17% -76%
GTA V - 1920x1080 Highest Settings possible AA:4xMSAA + FX AF:16x
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
86.1 fps ∼100%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
85 fps ∼99% -1%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
73 fps ∼85% -15%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
45.6 fps ∼53% -47%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
36.4 (min: 22.1) fps ∼42% -58%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
25.7 (min: 4) fps ∼30% -70%
Rainbow Six Siege - 1920x1080 Ultra Preset AA:T AF:16x
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
247 (min: 125) fps ∼100% +75%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
176 (min: 115) fps ∼71% +25%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
141.1 (min: 84.4) fps ∼57%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop), 6700K
130 fps ∼53% -8%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
127 (min: 86) fps ∼51% -10%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
120 (min: 77) fps ∼49% -15%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
79 (min: 56) fps ∼32% -44%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
65.9 (min: 39) fps ∼27% -53%
The Division - 1920x1080 Ultra Preset AF:16x
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
130 (min: 75) fps ∼100% +10%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
117.7 fps ∼91%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
80 (min: 41) fps ∼62% -32%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop), 6700K
59.6 fps ∼46% -49%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
57.5 (min: 39) fps ∼44% -51%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
53.3 (min: 32) fps ∼41% -55%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
30.3 (min: 16) fps ∼23% -74%
Dishonored 2 - 1920x1080 Ultra Preset AA:TX
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
99 (min: 70) fps ∼100% +22%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
80.9 (min: 60) fps ∼82%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
60.6 (min: 41) fps ∼61% -25%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
46.4 (min: 32) fps ∼47% -43%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
38.7 (min: 32) fps ∼39% -52%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
33.7 (min: 25) fps ∼34% -58%
For Honor - 1920x1080 Extreme Preset AA:T AF:16x
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
173 (min: 115) fps ∼100% +14%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop), 1800X
151.8 (min: 46.9) fps ∼88%
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 480, 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
77 (min: 58) fps ∼45% -49%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K, Intel SSD 530 Series SSDSC2BW240A
69.8 (min: 53) fps ∼40% -54%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
48.9 (min: 35) fps ∼28% -68%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop), 4790K, Samsung SSD 840 Pro 256GB MZ7PD256HAFV-0Z000
42.8 (min: 31) fps ∼25% -72%
low med. high ultra4K
BioShock Infinite (2013) 276.9242.9233.4199.5fps
GTA V (2015) 125.9114.688.786.181.3fps
The Witcher 3 (2015) 170.4132.4111.273.154.4fps
Rainbow Six Siege (2015) 243.4196159.6141.153fps
Rise of the Tomb Raider (2016) 205.7161142.1139.274fps
Far Cry Primal (2016) 7266615864fps
The Division (2016) 200.7170131.8117.766.4fps
Deus Ex Mankind Divided (2016) 79.277.369.366.547.9fps
Battlefield 1 (2016) 185.3165.3149.9138.967.7fps
Dishonored 2 (2016) 108.9104.910180.962fps
Watch Dogs 2 (2016) 120.7112103.289.160.4fps
Resident Evil 7 (2017) 282.2233.4174.8155.752.7fps
For Honor (2017) 223.2178.4173.3151.887.3fps
Ghost Recon Wildlands (2017) 160.2121.9109.169.4457.4fps
F1 2017 (2017) 22119016810968fps
Ark Survival Evolved (2017) 121.485.281.662.126.7fps
FIFA 18 (2017) 344.6331.3310.6305.4187.6fps

Compute Performance

Given that there are 1920 shader units per GPU, the compute performance of the SLI system is much higher. The Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini does actually quite well when running LuxMark v2.0 and ComputeMark v2.1. The SLI combo outperforms the competition by a fair margin mainly because of the LuxMark 2.0 results, as this benchmark takes full advantage of the SLI technology. We still can't whole-heartedly recommend an SLI system for professional use - an Nvidia Quadro GPU or AMDs counterpart FirePro are the much better choices.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 SLI (Desktop)
Desktop PC Ryzen 7 1800X + Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 SLI, 1800X
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop)
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Founders Edition, 4790K
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition, 4790K
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop)
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Founders Edition 6 GB, 6700K
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Desktop)
MSI GeForce GTX 1050 Ti, 4790K
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Desktop)
Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 2GB, 4790K
AMD Radeon RX 480 (Desktop)
AMD Radeon RX 480 8 GB Reference, 4790K
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
MSI RX 470 Gaming X 4GB, 4790K
LuxMark v2.0 64Bit
-49%
-34%
-69%
-77%
-80%
-65%
-70%
Room GPUs-only
4923
2474
-50%
3050
-38%
1773
-64%
1175
-76%
1037
-79%
1661
-66%
1440
-71%
Sala GPUs-only
9410
5012
-47%
6600
-30%
2584
-73%
2156
-77%
1864
-80%
3468
-63%
3020
-68%
ComputeMark v2.1
2%
67%
-28%
-57%
-62%
-22%
-27%
1024x600 Normal, QJuliaRayTrace
4813
4761
-1%
7938
65%
3322
-31%
1931
-60%
1572
-67%
2746
-43%
2475
-49%
1024x600 Normal, Mandel Scalar
2755
2861
4%
4949
80%
2002
-27%
1092
-60%
968
-65%
2539
-8%
2447
-11%
1024x600 Normal, Mandel Vector
2599
2706
4%
4391
69%
1994
-23%
1277
-51%
1100
-58%
2162
-17%
2172
-16%
1024x600 Normal, Fluid 2DTexArr
1365
1390
2%
2092
53%
963
-29%
596
-56%
555
-59%
991
-27%
911
-33%
1024x600 Normal, Fluid 3DTex
1378
1402
2%
2275
65%
985
-29%
597
-57%
554
-60%
1220
-11%
1039
-25%
1024x600 Normal, Score
12910
13121
2%
21646
68%
9266
-28%
5493
-57%
4749
-63%
9659
-25%
9044
-30%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
-24% / -11%
17% / 42%
-49% / -38%
-67% / -62%
-71% / -66%
-44% / -33%
-49% / -38%

Stress Test and Emissions

To check for adequate cooling, we run our stress test and subject the graphic cards to the benchmark tool Furmark. Both GPUs start to heat up shortly after the start of the test. The upper GPU gets warmer, since it absorbs some of the heat generated by the lower GPU. For this reason, the temperature increases to 81 °C after only five minutes, which doesn't allow for a lot of headroom given the maximum temperature "target" of 83 °C. The upper GPU does hit this ceiling eventually, which in turn leads to a reduction of the clock speeds. Under load, the fans emit a distinct whooshing sound, although we wouldn't describe that sound as annoying. The radial fan Nvida uses for the Titan X is substantially louder. Thanks to "Fan Stop", the two GPUs are silent when performing 2D tasks.

About our review system:

Although our case is equipped with two 140 mm fans in the front which suck in cooling air, the upper GPU of the SLI team surpasses the optimum temperature window under continuous load. Users interested in an SLI system might want to consider liquid cooling, which would improve the GPU temperatures significantly.

3DMark Sky Diver (stress test)
3DMark Sky Diver (stress test)
3DMark Time Spy (stress test)
3DMark Time Spy (stress test)

Power Consumption and Overclocking

3DMark Fire Strike Ultra (overclocked)
3DMark Fire Strike Ultra (overclocked)

Despite the high temperatures under load, we decided to take a chance by overclocking the cards. We used the tool "MSI Afterburner" to increase the power limit to its maximum (112 %), which in turn increased the maximum power draw for each card from 150 W to 168 W. At the same time, we increased the temperature target to a maximum of 92 °C. The performance was stable in SLI mode with recorded pluses of 150 MHz for the core frequency and 400 MHz for the VRAM. The 3DMark Fire Strike Ultra score improved from 7863 to 8531 points.

Power consumption under load (PT 50 %)
Power consumption under load (PT 50 %)
Power consumption under load (PT 50 %)
Power consumption under load (PT 50 %)
Power consumption under load (PT 50 %)
Power consumption under load (PT 50 %)

Verdict

Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini, courtesy of Zotac Germany
Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini, courtesy of Zotac Germany

The Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini is a space-saving gaming GPU. We like the changes Zotac implemented compared to Nvidia's reference design. The noise level of the cooling fans isn't annoying even at maximum load levels. While SLI systems were much more common years ago, the are slowly disappearing from the scene. The reason is straightforward: even a single GeForce GTX 1070 can handle pretty much any current game. But of course there are gamers out there who think that even 150 FPS aren't "good enough". Users who want to build a SLI rig should really spend some time looking at the pros and cons however before making a final decision.

Users with sufficient funds for an SLI system are better off with a higher-end single graphics card. SLI systems simply suffer from too many nagging little problems.

We recommend single GPUs over multi-GPU systems, as the later don't have many advantages and games can be arduous to configure as well. In addition, not all games support SLI, which is aggravating as well. The main disadvantage of an SLI combo are the high temperatures and the much higher power draw.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 Mini Graphics Card SLI Configuration Review
Sebastian Bade, 2017-08-12 (Update: 2017-08-12)
Bernhard Pechlaner
Bernhard Pechlaner - Review Editor
Ended up in the IT sector in the 90s more or less accidentally and have remained in the industry (as a sysadmin) ever since. Always been interested in laptops - first purchase was - if memory serves correctly - a Toshiba Satellite T2115CS with DX4-75 processor, 4 MB of RAM and 350 MB hard disk drive (and Windows 3.1). To this day, laptops appeal to me - much to the chagrin of my wife, who doesn’t seem understand why we need 5-10 of them at any given time ;-).