The Lightning series is one of my favorite series on the market and the main reason for that is because they're more than just a card that carries a good overclock or has the ability to achieve a good one. MSI go back to the drawing board and make sure the card stands out from anything else on the market.
The GTX 480 has always had a bit of trouble gaining momentum on the market and no matter what you think of the model on a whole, it hasn't been a fantastic model for NVIDIA. Recently, though, we've seen companies really begin to attack the card and make it stand out for all the right reasons.
We saw Galaxy strap a massive cooler on the card which made it an absolute beast; GIGABYTE has brought it into its SOC series and today MSI are bringing the card into the Lightning series. It looks like an absolute beast; that much I can tell you. But how does it go once we slide it into our testbed and use our favorite overclocking software from MSI?
It's been a while since we've seen a big box like this from MSI and while the picture doesn't give the best perspective, we can tell it's clearly larger than most VGA boxes these days.
Inside the big box there's a fair bit going on; we've got the normal stuff like some paperwork and a driver CD; we've got a DVI to VGA and DVI to HDMI connector, HDMI cable along with a number of power convertors which include a dual Molex to 6-Pin and two 6-Pin to 8-Pin ones.
Also included are another three little cables. We've seen these before from MSI and what they're used for is to measure the voltage of the card in certain areas. Most people will not use these cables and this feature, but it's another extra that puts the Lightning series a level above the competition.
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- Page 1 [Introduction and Package]
- Page 2 [Card and Specifications]
- Page 3 [Test System Setup and 3DMark Vantage]
- Page 4 [Unigine Heaven Benchmark]
- Page 5 [Benchmarks - Resident Evil 5]
- Page 6 [Benchmarks - Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X.]
- Page 7 [Benchmarks - Mafia II]
- Page 8 [Benchmarks - Lost Planet 2]
- Page 9 [Benchmarks - Aliens vs. Predator]
- Page 10 [Benchmarks - Final Fantasy XIV]
- Page 11 [Benchmarks - Street Fighter IV]
- Page 12 [Benchmarks - Far Cry 2]
- Page 13 [Benchmarks - Batman Arkham Asylum]
- Page 14 [Benchmarks - High Quality AA and AF]
- Page 15 [Benchmarks - PhysX Tests]
- Page 16 [Temperature Test]
- Page 17 [Sound Test]
- Page 18 [Power Consumption Tests]
- Page 19 [Total Performance Rating (TPR)]
- Page 20 [Total Value Rating (TVR)]
- Page 21 [Final Thoughts]