Zotac molds GTX 1050s into low-profile tiny terrors

Builders of slim HTPCs with gaming aspirations have never had it better. Low-profile graphics cards built with Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1050 and GTX 1050 Ti chips are already available from Galax, Gigabyte, and MSI. AMD loyalists can pick up a small Radeon RX 460 from MSI, too. Buyers with a little space to exchange for quieter operation can opt for a fanless GeForce GTX 1050 Ti from Palit. Zotac is now joining the dogpile with its GeForce GTX 1050 Low Profile and GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Low Profile cards.

Zotac's cards toe the Nvidia party line with respect to clock speeds, with a 1290 MHz base and 1392 Mhz boost clocks for the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti card and a faster 1354 MHz base and 1455 MHz boost clock for the pared-down GeForce GTX 1050 model. For comparison's sake, MSI's low-profile cards are also clocked to Nvidia's reference specs, while the Galax and Gigabyte cards are a wee bit faster.

Both of Zotac's cards look identical, with the same cooler design and port cluster bearing one DisplayPort 1.4 connector, an HDMI 2.0 port, and one crusty old dual-link DVI-D connector. The cards have a pair of 40-mm fans atop and measure 5.7" x 4.38" x 1.5" (14.5 cm x 11.1 cm x 3.7 cm). As with other similar low-profile offerings, these cards don't require a PCIe power connector, but will take up a pair of PCIe slots. Zotac helpfully includes standard and half-height brackets in the box, too.

Zotac didn't talk pricing or availability, but the fact that the product gallery is full of 3D renders suggests that actual cards might not hit store shelves for at least a couple of weeks. We don't expect pricing to deviate much from existing offerings, though. For example, MSI's low-profile GeForce GTX 1050 goes for $120 and Zotac's half-height GTX 1050 Ti can be purchased for $155. It's a great time to build small.

Comments closed
    • Chrispy_
    • 3 years ago

    The biggest problem with these little cards is that the fans are small and often die within a year or two.

    I’d love to see a card with a heatsink like this, but rather than a custom shroud, how about a flat plate with eight mounting holes for a set of commodity 40mm fans and a couple of TX3 fan headers on the board?

    What spec fan you fit to these GPUs doesn’t really matter since modern GPUs are all temperature-throttled anyway. If you fit quieter or slower fans your GPU will just boost less or clock down slightly. It’s a compromise that you can already do in software anyway.

      • JustAnEngineer
      • 3 years ago

      40mm fans are annoying as heck. Any bigger fan is better.

        • Chrispy_
        • 3 years ago

        Well, whatever size these are. I’d assume you can fit 60mm fans on a low-pro card, I just said 40mm because that’s what the article said.

    • AAtom
    • 3 years ago

    Low profile is great and all, but 2 slot width defeats my interest in this not so “tiny” terror. Please, please, Zotac, give us full profile one slot cards or better: low profile/one PCIE slot format. And no, you don’t need this big active cooler for a 75 W part (there were plenty one slot GPUs with much more Wattage in the old days).

      • Firestarter
      • 3 years ago

      I don’t know, I think there are plenty low-profile budget PCs out there for which this low profile 2-slot card would be a perfect upgrade. It’s not as if the other slots are occupied

        • AAtom
        • 3 years ago

        You are right, but my point is the card is not as little as it could. It clearly doesn’t need a 2 slot active cooler for a 75 W max part (no 6 or 8 pin aux, this is not an overclockers card). Today, we are so used to the current 3 fans behemoths that a 2 slot half height card pass for tiny 🙂

          • Firestarter
          • 3 years ago

          it would be a lot noisier if it were a 1-slot card

            • deruberhanyok
            • 3 years ago

            Not entirely true. I had a Quadro K1200 in a system for a while – basically a single slot GeForce 750 – those were binned GPUs with 4GB of GDDR5 attached and the card was rated for 45W power. (vs. the 55W rating of a 1GB regular 750).

            It was low profile and had a single slot heatsink and it didn’t make much noise at all, even under heavy gaming, in a small system build inside an ISK 300 that sat on top of my desk.

            So it’s certainly possible that they could get power draw low enough on a 1050 to do single slot, low profile, and not make a crapton of noise. It just doesn’t seem that anyone wants to.

    • ronch
    • 3 years ago

    I really appreciate how the industry is moving away from huge, power hungry graphics cards to smaller, much more efficient ones. I have always preferred smaller boards that had modest power requirements but were still very capable, like my Palit HD4670 and Sapphire HD5670 back in recent years, and my current HD7770 is along those lines too.

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