Ok, I have read every post included the deleted ones throughout the day. And here is my take: The 780Ti performs as expected (the real expectation not the glorified misinformed one that some wish to flail about ) and by that I mean ~10% over Titan at stock. Keep in mind it is clocked a bit higher as well. Too many reviews that differ greatly in their benches and I guess that is the norm but it doesn't seem to take a way greatly from the performance of the 780Ti. So for now, key word being now, the 780Ti is the top performer. I still warn to allow time for the non-reference 290X/290 before jumping too high.
The 780Ti is not likely to see any improvement in drivers other than the norm seen in recent weeks for the 780/Titan. The chip is nothing more than one more unlocked SMX so I don't expect to see any change in the benches. But the 290X is new, not architecture but chipwise, so driver improvements are to be expected, albeit not likely a 25% increase over time but 5-10% is a likely outcome. Again time will tell. And then there is Mantle... but god only knows how that will turn out... for now.
Power usage here has it close to the same level as the AMD group. This brings up a few points/concerns: One the expected OCing potential is going to come down to how much power it is going to eat. You are far more likely to have higher OCs with the 780 than the 780Ti so I am not sure why so many think this is going to be higher. I get the power management new to the 780Ti but I am not sure it will compensate for the power draw from 12SMX to 15SMX. And keep in mind the heat generated as clocks go up. So if say the max OC for the 780 is 1550mhz ( just numbers here fakes at that for point) it is far unlikely that the 780Ti will see the same max.
Now I am in no way knocking the card, it is a great powerhouse. But seems like a lot of posters think of it as the second coming. I fail to see the innovation or the newness that usually garners this attention.
Ok Now for the arguments. PRICE: yes it is a bit high, not nuclear like the Titan but given the recent price grouping of other cards, like many have stated, $599-$649 would have been more rational. But as is the case with many products everywhere, Rational has little to do with it. Price as an argument on its own is just about price. Performance, added value and the like are small pieces to that argument. When you make them a bigger part then the argument is about those and less about price. What I am saying here is PICK ONE.
Now PERFORMANCE: Yes the 780Ti is the top performer, no doubt. But unlike the Titan-7970 it isn't the clear winner. The top spot right now is so tight amongst a number of cards. it is good to have that much variety and choice. The Titan days sucked. Variety was the word only those with >$1000 had and then it wasn't really variety but one choice. But like a football game where the final is a one point win, it is still a win.
290X: Great performance possibility, key word POSSIBILITY. That cooler is terribad. And it is a mistake by AMD to use it no doubt. It in fact puts them 2nd and there is no excuse. The only saving grace is that after market and non-reference helps alleviate that atrocious implementation. But non-reference isn't here yet so really cant use it as an excuse or claim it will tip the scales, yet. But neither can you state it as being down and claim the 780Ti the clear winner for this generation till the next, not yet.
And as a last thought and general question by me: the 512 bit bus compared to the 384 bit bus has bothered me a bit. reason here is this: at some point that bus has to be a limit. OCing the memory and core at some point have to have a limited return and greatly affected by the bus. Question then is: when is it a limiting factor or rather at what speeds. Obviously 512 bit allows lower clocks and less power draw, but maybe that is the reason for the 290s 4K performance advantage rather than the 4gb Vram. Maybe the bus is limiting the traffic needed to maintain a higher frame rate. Just a thought, seems no one was really mentioning it.