Galax GTX970 EX OC Black Edition Review


Galax GTX970 EX OC Black Edition Review


Such is the intensity of competition in the graphics card market it seems that it is even more difficult to stand out than it used to be. The days when a ton of reference cards were the norm and a factory overclocked model with a non-standard cooler was a luxury are behind us. Everything has to have a custom cooler to even be noticed, and a factory overclock is almost expected. This is particularly true on the models that aren't at the very top of the tree, as those are the ones that shift the most units.

With the lengthily-named Galax GTX970 EX OC Black Edition we have a card that promises everything we've come to expect, so the important thing is how does it deliver? Especially up against a couple of very heavy hitters.

Well, seems to be the overriding answer. That sounds like damning with faint praise, something we certainly aren't doing. However, the differences between the three GTX970's we've tested are slight enough that recommending one over another is going to be more a price/looks thing than necessarily performance based. In everything we threw at the EX OC Black it performed well, hopping between the fastest and second fastest positions on a regular basis. It was never disappointing and there is bundles of thermal headroom if you want to go mental with the clock speeds without frying anything. The GPU will run out of performance before the cooler does.

When we'd finished testing the GTX970 EX OC Black Edition, and found ourselves very impressed by the overall quality, we had to investigate who this new company was that had leapt out of the box with such a great product. Of course as soon as we found out it was KFA2, the people behind an awesome GTX570, the pieces fit into place.

If we had to sum it up, and we do, then we'd say that perhaps the ASUS Strix has slightly better "balls to the wall" performance, and the MSI Gaming is slightly better looking, but the understated dark grey and black looks of the EX OC Black Edition, coupled to the ludicrously good cooling performance and fast factory overclock make it a worthy winner of our OC3D Gold Award, and a card you definitely need to put on your short list.

Thanks to Galax for supplying the GTX970 EX OC Black Edition for review. Discuss it in our OC3D Forums.

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Most Recent Comments

09-12-2014, 09:56:53

Seems like a proper tidy card, an the temps were fantastic tooQuote

09-12-2014, 11:47:18

Still waiting for mexican edition.. i heard you get free tacos with itQuote

09-12-2014, 14:50:50

So what's the difference between the black edition and none black edition? Just the backplate and pcb color?

EDIT: Never mind I researched it. Apparently it's a little bit faster as well. For those wondering the black edition Core Clock is at 1164MHz and Boost Clock at 1317MHz. The none black edition is Core Clock: 1126MHz, Boost Clock: 1266MHzQuote

10-12-2014, 06:34:25

currently got an 670 EX oc (KFA2 but the exact same as Galax(y)), can't complain about it in any way, cool, quiet and fast. I think that this brand are overlooked alot here in the uk but i have heard they ship alot more units in the states.
might upgrade to this after xmas, or the iChill.Quote

17-12-2014, 13:28:25

Just a quick question, it's hard to tell from the pictures, but what colour would you say describes the fan shroud more, A gold ish colour, or a black chrome/nickel ish, or just a silver ish effect, I'm also seing a very light blue tint in some pictures.

? I'm planning on a build in a PS07, with an Asus Z97 Gryphon, with the cpu, getting wet, with an EK Supremacy EVO - Acetal, black chrome fittings, and black hardline tube. I want to keep it dark, with maybe red led fans ?, and no internal led's. Even if it is more, silver, than black, do you think with the darkness of the internals would it reflect the black more ?

Or should I just stop being so tight and fork out the extra few quid, and go for the all black OC'ers exclusive. Cheers mate, and HO HO Ho....Quote

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