Five-Way AMD Radeon R9 280X Benchmark Battle

By Steve ยท 16 replies
Jul 11, 2014
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  1. The first thing I look in a graphics card comparative is not the best FPS or overclock capability, it's the NOISE at different work loads and sadly this article even had not mention to it. Next time I would like you test it, please.
    EClyde and veLa like this.
  2. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,664   +1,949

    Then buy a card with passive cooling, or buy one separate and install it. Otherwise, nVidia cards would be a better bet, they are quieter. I've been using MSI GTX 780 for 1 years now, and it is incredibly quiet, I can't hear it at all.

    P.S. That link is for Ti card, but I'm using the basic 780, not Ti, same design though, not on sale at present.
    Steve likes this.
  3. mascotzel

    mascotzel TS Rookie

    Good review.
    But I have to agree with what was stated before.
    Main difference between the cards is the cooler and how it behaves.
    Performance wise, any 280X is a 280X and will offer the same performance ( slight margin allowed).
    OC potential is relative, it could be related to a specific card.
    What sets them the most apart is the cooler :
    - size
    - temperatures
    - noise

    Let's hope you'll measure noise in future tests.
    Thanks for the review!
    ScubaRhys and EClyde like this.
  4. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,264

    Thanks for the read. Authoritative and comprehensive as always.

    Re: the noise. The sound of the cards is largely subjective. A decibel level doesn't tell much of a story. The pitch would, but even that is subjective. There are people on this very site who deem the HD 7990 and R9 290X in reference form to be "quiet", or at least unnoticeable. A sound meter will also penalize a card that has excessive coil whine which may not affect more than a percentage of cards, and a card that has been through a few reviewers hands and taken to the limits of its overclockability on a few occasions (such as Steve mentioned with the Asus DCII TOP card) might suffer more than most.

    For those who simply must have a comparison:

    Steve, Jad Chaar and misor like this.
  5. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Topic Starter Posts: 2,869   +2,037

    VitalyT and dividebyzero pretty much covered it. The tests really are subjective which is why I am not keen to include them.

    However when I overclocked all these cards and added voltage they were all near silent under full load. No card stood out as being loud that was for sure, you could buy any one of these and be certain you were getting a quiet graphics card.
  6. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    If the ASUS card had a backplate (like most of their high end cards do), I would choose that over the Gigabyte. Too bad it doesn't.

    @Steve Great review, but I have some suggestions about the graphs/charts. I like what you are trying to do with the charts and all, but the colors are kind of distracting. I would try to keep the charts as simple as possible, only highlighting the tested/highlighted ones. Toms Hardware has really nailed the charts in terms of color coding (TechSpot nails everything else better :p). If you want to stick with color coding though, use TS colors as much as possible, it will make them look more slick.
  7. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Topic Starter Posts: 2,869   +2,037

    Thanks really appreciate the feedback... I tried a few versions of the graphs before I landed on the ones we went with. Can you send me a version of the "Benchmarks: Overclocking Performance" graphs that you think we should have gone with, I am very open to input here.

    I am even keen to update the review with something better.
  8. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    My pleasure, check out your PMs!
  9. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,266   +436

    I own a msi 7970 Ghz and I prefer cards that come with Default heat plates like two of the 5 cards in this review. Why do I like reference designs with heat plates when I replace the stock cooler I don't have to deal with VRM cooling and Memory cooling issues.

    Installed a Kraken G10 on my card and noise and temps are fantastic.

    At $300 bucks the 280x is a great card for 1080/1200p gaming you can play most games at high or ultra and still get great frame rates.
  10. GhostRyder

    GhostRyder This guy again... Posts: 2,198   +593

    Excellent review, appreciate seeing stuff like this as it opens the eyes of the readers to the better choices when it comes to the same card. Im actually shocked though that gigabyte seems to have the best core clock and it seems to be the case on alot of video cards recently (At least when purchasing the higher clocked variants from them). Probably still subjective to luck in a way but it seems to be pretty consistent, im actually more shocked HIS has the best cooler of this group since I would have assumed based on Asus they would have had a better one than HIS.

    I personally love the MSI gaming editions, they seem to offer a good balance overall and just have a fantastic look and acoustics readings all around. That's just me of course...
  11. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,664   +1,949

    The last one sounds like your regular vacuum cleaner...
  12. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,264

    I think the dual fan design was the main reason Sapphire went with a 3-fan Tri-X option for the second revision card ;) This is the same cooler on the Toxic version - so, pretty similar to the card that Steve reviewed
  13. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,664   +1,949

    Nothing beats Radeon in the noise test:

    veLa likes this.
  14. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,264

    Ramjet Assisted Deafness Every Owner Notices
  15. EClyde

    EClyde TS Evangelist Posts: 1,307   +429

    Thanks for the review. It helped me
    Steve likes this.
  16. This is super helpful as Im kind of in a jam and under a budget, my lovely 6970 has lasted me a long time and then the fan got toasted by lame game Watchdogs (on launch day, during the optimization fiasco) lol, so im hunting for a new card, I could probably replace the fan on mine with an arctic accelero, but I figured an upgrade would be a better choice. So again, thanks for the review, very my case...noise is irrelevant as my neighbours AC is so damn loud that even with my windows closed I can hear it lmao....thanks.

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