MSI R9 390X Gaming 8G Review
Published: 18th June 2015 | Source: MSI | Price: £350 @ OCUK |
Let's shut up the naysayers before we begin. Yes, we know this isn't the Fury X. Yes, we know that normally we despise rebadged hardware as much as anyone. Yes, we appreciate this is a stop-gap measure and owners of the R9 290X need not apply. All got that? Good. Where were we...
We were all ready to hate on the R9 390X for all the reasons we outlined above, and certainly if our first experience was a reference card then perhaps we wouldn't be so impressed. But the key word in that sentence is impressed and we absolutely are. You would imagine that a card at this price and designed as an interim it would be aimed at a very small sector of a the market. Somewhere around a basic GTX970. That's exactly where we had it pegged based upon our experience of R9 290Xs and knowledge of how reticent the manufacturers are to give 'free' performance.
The MSI Gaming 8G take upon the R9 390X is spectacular though.
Performance is slightly dependant upon which title you're benchmarking, but in general it's not just a good GTX970 that matches the R9 390X. Instead the MSI Gaming is more akin to a regular GTX980 and, sometimes, an overclocked one. We don't care what your relative thoughts about the wisdom of releasing a card that doesn't contain your latest GPU are. We don't really care about whether the Fury X will be a stunner. As always here at OC3D we live in the here and now, and right now the R9 390X, especially in the Gaming guise MSI have festooned it with, is a great graphics card for the money.
There is nothing about this card that is rebrand, its a totally new card. Also just to be clear this could have been called the MSI 290X Gaming V2 and we would be saying the exact same thing. This is in no way shape or form a number change on the box. This card has been designed from the ground up to be amazing and it did just that. Amaze..... (balls?)
The MSI accoutrements make a big difference to the product. The Twin Frozr V cooler and custom PCB ensure that the temperatures are a low 73°C and the card looks amazing. The backplate is as sexy as the front, and no matter what game you throw at it you'll be pleased with the results.
It costs much less than you might expect to pay for this level of performance, and does so whilst looking great, being quiet and cool, and generally finding itself utterly deserving of our OC3D Gold Award and your consideration.