Aorus Geforce GTX 1060 Xtreme Edition Review
Released in August of 2016, The Gigabyte Aorus Geforce GTX 1060 Xtreme Gaming graphics card comes from a long line of cards designed with gamers in mind. Boasting 6GB of GDDR5 with boost clock speeds of 1873 MHz, the Aorus 1060 comes VR ready. Sporting the Gigabyte Xtreme VR Link, a gamer can connect up to 4 monitors/devices using the provided 3 DisplayPort and 3 HDMI ports. The card registers newly connected devices after a quick PC restart with no other configuring necessary, which I am sure gamers will appreciate as less time configuring is more time gaming!
With this much horsepower strapped into a card, Gigabyte was sure to include a solid cooling solution. The Aorus 1060 features the Windforce 2X, providing plenty of cooling for this slick GPU. A pair of 100mm fans sit on top of the card at a slight incline, naturally direct air to direct out the back of the card, causing less heat bleed throughout the case. Having spent the last two weeks working with the card it is safe to say that it runs both fairly cool even at full 4K resolutions, as well as quite quietly. After two weeks of constant internal temperature measuring I am delighted to report that I saw no real increase in internal temperatures of the case as a result of the Aorus 1060.
Visually the card carries a beautiful aesthetic with the Gigabyte logo backlit by a customizable LED that is managed from Aorus Graphics Engine software. The card fits nicely in a mid size tower and with the customizable LED, it can easily match the color scheme of your existing setup, assuming you’re into that sort of thing. The build quality of the card is solid giving it a well manufactured feel. Gigabyte has done a solid job of meshing form factor, aesthetics, and practical function in their GTX 1060 Xtreme Edition card.
As we move into discussing the performance of the card it's worth making not of how we run our benchmark. After installing the card we take it through its paces by running it against several games and measure core temperatures and FPS throughout the play session. Typically we push all settings to maximum (unless otherwise stated) and see how the card holds up under the strain. Measurements are taken at 1080p, 1440p and 4K. We measure the all of this under as close to the same conditions as possible, most notably by running the same content three times. As an aside, I am getting incredibly good at running the advanced Research Facility in ID’s DOOM. We then compile the data and put it together in a fancy chart just for you.
As great as it is to talk visuals, specs and the how we do it it all, let's be honest, what we really want is a test drive. So without further ado let’s take a look and see how the Gigabyte Aorus Geforce GTX 1060 Xtreme Gaming Graphics card holds up under the pressure.
- Motherboard: Asus M5A99FX Pro
- Processor: AMD FX 8350 Eight Core 4.00 GHz
- RAM: Kingston HyperX Fury Red 8GB DDR3 1866MHz
- GPU: Gigabyte Aorus GTX 1060 Xtreme Edition 6GB
- PSU: Thermaltake ToughPower 750 Watt 80 Plus Gold
Starting out the benchmarking I ran the GTX 1060 through a series of MMOs. The GTX 1060 performed well. The 1080p and 1440p resolutions are where this card really shines providing an excellent gaming experience at full settings. Even the most graphically intensive MMOs, such as Black Desert Online, didn’t make the card work too hard. I did notice a drop when switching to 4K, most notably in FFXIV which struggled a bit to maintain a consistent 30 FPS, a functional standard for MMOs. Nonetheless, I didn’t run into any situations where any of the MMOs I tested were unplayable, but would recommend running the more graphically intensive ones at the 1440p setting.
Moving on to some of the shooters on the list, I ran the card against Overwatch, Doom and Fallout 4. Fallout 4 is capped at 60 FPS; however, I wanted to see how the Aorus would handle the vastness the game’s open world at full 4K settings. I am pleased to say that, across the board, I was happy with the results. As expected, the game really excels at the 1080p and 1440p level but can handle itself fairly well at 4K. Playing through overwatch specifically the card handled the strain like a champ running at 89 FPS with full settings. Doom, however, saw a bit of a dip at 4K, running at an average of 38 FPS which, while still playable, isn’t the ideal for first person shooters.
The Aorus 1060 Xtreme can support up to four monitors at once. We tested each game with three monitors connected, one displaying the game, as well as in single-monitor scenarios. I was surprised to see that the Aorus didn’t even flinch with extra monitors attached for multi-tasking.
Throughout the testing the card remained quite cool. In fact I was impressed that even running games at 4K with max settings the peak temps were still only in the low 60 degrees C. The WINDFORCE 2X really does an excellent job at keep this card running cool despite the strain. As mentioned even when under the strain of DOOM at 4K with settings maxed, the fans on the card remained quiet under pressure. I was quite impressed by the lack of noise coming from my case during the testing.
My only real concern is how this card will hold up over the next couple of years. Boasting a full 4K VR support in a card is one thing and, at the moment, it really does do just that. However, even with newer titles coming out this year I am curious as to how well it will hold up at such a high resolution.
That said, I don’t want to downplay how solid this card is. If you're looking for a great mid- to high range card that can handle itself extremely well at 1080p and 1440p, the Gigabyte Aorus GTX 1060 Xtreme Gaming can and will deliver. With solid performance and excellent cooling the 1060 Xtreme has power where it counts. If you’re looking to make the jump from 1080p to the 1440p, and even some 4K gaming, without breaking the bank, the Aorus 1060 Xtreme from Gigabyte is a great place to start shopping.