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Sapphire Radeon R9 290X 8GB Vapor-X OC Video Card Review

By: Shawn Baker | AMD Radeon GPU in Video Cards | Posted: Nov 17, 2014 10:08 pm
TweakTown Rating: 88%Manufacturer: Sapphire

Close up with the Sapphire R9 290X 8GB Vapor-X OC




Upon looking at the card, you'll immediately notice that there is nothing that we haven't seen before. This is due to the fact that we've already looked at the Vapor-X versions of the R9 290 and R9 290X from Sapphire, both of which feature the massive Tri-X cooler. You can see a tiny bit of the black PCB, but ultimately, it's all heat sink behind those three fans with a number of copper heat pipes coming out from the GPU area. The Vapor-X Tri-X cooler has already proved itself a number of times, and we're looking for it to offer some impressive performance numbers again today with this 8GB version of the R9 290X.






Looking around the card, you can see that power comes in the form of two, eight-pin PCIe power connectors, which is an upgrade from the standard single six-pin and single eight-pin PCIe power connector setup seen on reference design cards. Staying at the top of the card, but moving closer to the front, you can see being a R9 290 based card means that we don't have any CrossFire connectors, as they are unnecessary. However, we do have a BIOS switch here that lets us swap between two installed BIOS.




Finishing up our look at the card, you can see we've got two Dual-Link DVI connectors, along with a HDMI and DisplayPort connector. This is, of course, the standard R9 290X setup, and we liked it at launch. Although, we're seeing what the future of connectivity looks like with NVIDIA now offering three, full-size DisplayPort connectors, alongside a Dual-Link DVI and HDMI port.





Out of the box, your reference R9 290X 4GB will come with a core clock of 1000MHz. The 4GB of GDDR5 will carry a nice, round clock speed of 5000MHz QDR. Of course, being a Vapor-X version of the card means that it comes out of the box overclocked.




Looking above, you can see that Sapphire has chosen to bump the core clock ever slightly to 1030MHz. While most companies choose to ignore the memory clock, you can see that Sapphire has instead chosen to increase it to 5500MHz DDR.

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