In this review we take a peek at the Radeon R9-280X from ASUS. They plastered the GPU on a custom PCB, tweaked it and then applied their DirectCU-II cooling technology in a trimmed down smaller version. As such the product should be interesting for many of you. Follow us into this review where we'll look at temperatures, noise, performance, frame latency and we'll even give Ultra High Definition gaming a go with the hottest game titles on the globe.
Now before we begin with the new graphics cards the first thing that you guys will need to get used to is the new naming schema. AMD ended with the Radeon HD 7000 and 8000 series graphics card in 2013. Logic dictates that AMD would have continued with a series 9000. But hey now, we already have had the Radeon 9000 series many years ago (2003), oh and who doesn't remember the Radeon 9800 Pro, right? As such it was time to bring in a new naming schema, a bit more in line with AMD's APUs. R9 will be high-end and R7 will be mainstream and inevitably R5 being entry level. After that you'll notice products being tagged as 250, 260X, 270X, 280X and the coolest two of them all the Radeon R9 290 and R290X, (which have yet to be released). Though almost all of these are all new model graphics cards, most of them are respin products based of the Radeon HD 7000 series with a number of improvements. The respin products will get a new PCB, cooling, clock frequencies and much like NVIDIA boost, power, voltage, fan and load limiters. In the ling run there are three products in the lineup that come with a new GPU. For example The R7 260X and then of course R9 290 / 290X will be Hawaii GPU based. The cards with new silicon come with a truckload of new features like integrated DSPs offering TrueAudio technology. The rest (270X/280X) will keep the older specs. I agree that is a little confusing, but we'll explain it all over the next pages.
So for this particular review we have ASUS in the spotlight, they are releasing several customized R9-280X models but today specifically we test that little demon called TOP ... the DirectCUII version of the card. A little beast with massive cooling capacity. The customized card comes with 12-phase VRM circuitry, super alloy caps and chokes as well as a special SAP capacitor added to maximize overclocking headroom, according to Asus. The cooling itself uses two 100mm fans sitting on top of a big aluminum heatsink, while most of the PCB is covered with an aluminum heatspreader. The cooler is able to keep the product under 70 Degrees C, and that's under full load and stress without making any real noise. ASUS claims its design keeps the GPU core a good 10 to 20% cooler than AMDs reference design, which allowed the company to push the R9-280X over its reference frequencies. The product as such comes factory overclocked. The GPU will be clocked at 1.05 GHz while the memory will run at 1600MHz (6.4 Gbps data rate). There's more though, the DirectCU II Top comes with two DVI outputs (one DVI-I and one DVI-D) as well as one HDMI and DisplayPort connector.
So have a peek at the ASUS Radeon R9-280X DirectCU II TOP edition, a product with very nice game performance, a great feature set and a frame buffer that will pop your eyes out as yeah, the graphics card has a cool 3GB GDDR5 graphics memory. Head over to the next page where we'll startup a photoshoot first.
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ASUS Radeon R9-280X DirectCU II TOP review In this review we take a peek at the Radeon R9-280X from ASUS, they plastered the GPU on a custom PCB, tweaked it and then applied their DirectCUII cooling technology. As such the product should be interesting for many of you. Follow us into this review where we'll look at temperatures, noise, performance, Frame latency and we'll even give Ultra High Definition gaming a go with the hottest game titles on the globe.