NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 950 Is A $150+ Bargain For Linux Gamers

Written by Michael Larabel in Graphics Cards on 20 August 2015 at 09:00 AM EDT. Page 1 of 9. 23 Comments.

NVIDIA this morning is announcing the GeForce GTX 950, which they are advertising as the successor to the GeForce GTX 650 that's still one of the most commonly used graphics cards by gamers. The GeForce GTX 950 is going to retail for less than $200 while claiming to deliver three times the performance of the GTX 650 and twice the performance efficiency of this former mid-range Kepler graphics card. The past few days I've been testing out the EVGA GeForce GTX 950 to great success under Linux.

The GeForce GTX 950 was described by NVIDIA in their briefing as "the perfect gateway to GeForce gaming" and being a great match for current games as well as next-generation games. This Maxwell-based graphics card uses the GM206 GPU and is a step ahead of last year's GeForce GTX 750 that rolled out the original Maxwell architecture.

The GeForce GTX 950 is packing 768 CUDA cores, 6 SM units, 32 ROP units, two 64-bit memory controllers, 2GB of GDDR5 video memory, a base clock of 1024MHz, boost clock speed of 1188MHz, and an effective memory speed of 6600MHz. Up to four displays can be driven at once by the GTX 950. Other features of the GeForce GTX 950 are common to the rest of the GeForce GTX 900 series line-up.

Under Windows at least, the GeForce GTX 950 is aimed at being a competitor to AMD's Radeon R7 370 graphics card. If you missed our original R7 370 Linux tests, you can see the Linux hardware review of the MSI Radeon R7 370 GAMING 4G from last month. The R7 370 graphics cards are currently selling for around $150~180 USD for these products based on AMD's older GCN 1.0 tech.

The GeForce GTX 950 graphics cards start out at $159 USD while the factory over-clocked versions and such will sell upwards of $180.

The GTX 950 has a TDP of 90 Watts, which means there is an external PCI-E power connector required compared to the GTX 750. NVIDIA recommends the system have at least a 350 Watt power supply. Some GTX 950 models will utilize a six-pin PCI Express power connector while others will utilize an eight-pin connection, for the factory-overclocked cards and other high-end models.

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