Nvidia has done a great job engineering the GeForce GTX 690.

Squeezing two graphics cards into one is something it is now used to doing of course, but the fact it has managed it without sacrificing too much straight line speed is impressive.

The twin pairing of two GTX 680s in SLI is still the top performance configuration, if you've got the ready cash, the airflow through your chassis and one mother of a power supply. But the Nvidia GeForce GTX 690 is incredibly close in terms of raw frame rates to that setup.

You're losing out on one or two frames per second on average at most in opting for the single card versus the SLI setup.

That just demonstrates how well the GPU boost technology pushes on from that initially low 915MHz base clock.

EVGA GeForce GTX 690
Serious cooling for a serious card

It's also possible to push the performance even further should you want to really stress that £830/$1,000 purchase of yours. We managed another, stable, 110MHz offset, which translated to gaming performance of around 1,155MHz.

Still, that overclock only gave us another couple of frames per second across the board, but that's enough to push it ahead of the GTX 680 SLI configuration.

The problem for the Nvidia GeForce GTX 690 though comes in the shape of the recently released Nvidia GeForce GTX 670 cards.

Obviously on their own they represent no real challenge to the majesty of the GTX 690, but jam a pair of them into a system and for nigh-on £200/$200 less you've got a setup that performs almost as well.

As the GTX 690 is only just short of the GTX 680 in SLI, so is the GTX 670 SLI setup.

A pair of Nvidia GTX 670s though still needs a hefty PSU with the requisite PCIe power connectors to make good of the configuration.

Under full load the Nvidia GeForce GTX 690 draws a not-inconsiderable 416w, but that is still a lot less thirsty than either SLI configurations of the GTX 670 or GTX 680, at 430W and 480W respectively.