PowerColor Radeon R9 390 PCS+ 8GB review

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Overclocking The Radeon R9-390

Overclocking The Graphics Card

As most of you know, with most video cards you can apply a simple series of tricks to boost the overall performance a little. Typically you can tweak on core clock frequencies and voltages.

What Do We Need?
One of the best tools for overclocking Nvidia and AMD videocards is our own AfterBurner which will work with 90% of the graphics cards out there. We can really recommend it, download here

Where Should We Go?

Overclocking: By increasing the frequency of the videocard's memory and GPU, we can make the videocard increase its calculation clock cycles per second. It sounds hard, but it can really be done in less than a few minutes. I always tend to recommend to novice users and beginners, to not increase the frequency any higher than 5% on the core and memory clock. Example: If your card runs at 600 MHz (which is pretty common these days) then I suggest that you don't increase the frequency any higher than 30 to 50 MHz. More advanced users push the frequency often way higher. Usually when your 3D graphics start to show artifacts such as white dots ("snow"), you should back down 25 MHz and leave it at that. Usually when you are overclocking too hard, it'll start to show artifacts, empty polygons or it will even freeze. Carefully find that limit and then back down at least 20 MHz from the moment you notice an artifact. Look carefully and observe well. 
 

 

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All in all... do it at your own risk!

Original This sample Overclocked 
Max Clock: 1000 MHz Max Clock: 1010 MHz Max Clock: 1150 MHz
Memory Clock: 6000MHz Memory Clock:6000 MHz Memory Clock: 6800 MHz

With tweaking software we applied:

  • Power Target +50%
  • CPU clock 1150 MHz
  • Volage +100Mv
  • Mem clock 1700/6800 MHz
  • Increased fan RPM - 50%

This overclock is based on air cooling. Have a peek at the results when overclocked. 

 

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For all overclocked games above we have used the very same image quality settings as shown before. Overall the generic rule of thumb here for a decent tweak and overclock is that performance can gain anywhere from 5% to 20%. The end result depends on a lot of variables though, including power limiters, temperature limiters, fill-rate and so on, the performance increment can differ per card, brand, heck... even cooling solution and your chassis airflow.

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After overclocking and applying a little extra voltage, the card will definitely run hotter. GPU temps rise towards roughly 70 Degrees C and as you can see from the thermal image, the board runs a bit hotter as well, overall its fine really.

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