MSI RTX Gaming X Trio 2080 and 2080 Ti Preview
RTX Gaming X Trio 2080Ti
There is no doubt that the move to RGB lighting is here to stay, and you can get a feel for its importance in modern rigs just by looking at the packaging. No more do we have jet fighters, fast cars or strange fantasy figures. Instead the card itself, its feature set, and the RGB lighting are front and centre.
We have to say we're pleased to see MSI moving away from the half red/half black scheme of the earlier Gaming range of GPUs. With the modern trend towards RGB lighting monochrome hardware is definitely the way forwards. The addition of carbon-look flashes around the centre fan also provide a good thematic harmony if you own an MSI Carbon motherboard, and a subtle touch of design flair if you don't. Either side of the central fan we find the RGB lighting which is controllable by the MSI Mystic Light tech, whilst at the top left the SLI fingers are now covered up unless needed.
It wouldn't be a flagship GPU if it didn't come with heatpipes thick enough to bludgeon someone to death and more fins than a school of sardines. Between these and the three TORX fans the latest iteration of the Tri-Frozr cooler promises to deliver plenty of cooling to the card whilst not making your ears bleed in the process.
One of those under the hood improvements that might not be obvious is the placement of the fins themselves. They are in an alternating wave pattern which MSI say will improve the thermal efficiency of the card whilst also reducing the noise generation from the air moved by the fans.
People do seem to place undue emphasis upon the amount and type of fans on their GPU cooler, whereas the amount of fins is just as important, perhaps more so. The more fins you have, the larger the surface area. Larger surface area equals greater heat dissipation. That in turn leads to lower fan speeds to blow this warm air away, and lower fan speeds equal less noise and more usability. Anyone who has owned a graphics card that sounds like it's doing an impression of a vacuum cleaner will understand how easily this can become wearisome. The MSI RTX Gaming X Trio is absolutely bristling with fins.
If you've ever felt that your graphics card prowess was limited by the amount of power that you could feed to it, the MSI RTX Gaming X Trio 2080Ti solves that problem almost instantly with two eight pin and one six pin PCI Express power connectors. That is, for those of you unaware of such things, 450W of potential power input. Often when a manufacturer adds another power input to the PCB it's a bit of a Heath Robinson affair, but the MSI solution is a fully soldered element of a revised PCB. 'More steam' indeed.
You can see the difference between the regular RTX 2080 and RTX 2080Ti here, and also get a clear look at how well the MSI design team have implemented this increased power capability. Time to dig into your PSU box and get out that second set of modular PCI Express connectors.