These numbers look funny but there was a serious problem Palit’s implementation of their GeForce GTX 260. Under load the 55nm core consumes slightly less power, but at idle it is a completely different story. The reference 65nm GTX 260 at idle drops the core and memory frequencies considerably but the Palit card maintains 3D frequencies at all times. We asked PaLiT what was going on and they informed us that the card needed a new video card BIOS. It turns out a simple BIOS fix would solve this problem, but after waiting more than a week a BIOS was never given to us.
To kick off the overclocking I started with a simple GPU overclock. The card went from a stock 625Mhz core, 1100MHz memory, 1348MHz shader, to an appreciable 730MHz core, 1300MHz memory, 1574MHz shader.
I then proceeded to overclock the CPU to 3.7GHz and re-ran 3DMark 2006 with the same GPU overclock. Analyzing the SM2 and SM3 scores, the card was definitely CPU limited in this benchmark.