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MSI GeForce GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC Overclocked Video Card Review

MSI GeForce GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC Overclocked Video Card Review

We're checking out the new NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 GPU in the form of the 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC Edition from MSI which falls under the new Gaming Series brand.

@ShawnBakerTW
Published Wed, Jul 10 2013 12:01 AM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Apr 7 2020 12:31 PM CDT
Rating: 93%Manufacturer: MSI

Introduction and Package

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VIEW GALLERY - 34 IMAGES

As we roll through our review samples, we find ourselves today pulling another video card out of the pile. The new NVIDIA GeForce GTX 700 series has done a good job of impressing us so far thanks to the strong performance we're seeing along with an aggressive price point.

The fact that AMD continue to be quiet on the video card front also means that NVIDIA have really been able to suck up the lime light the last few months. While we thought it would become a little quiet after Computex, NVIDIA turned around and released the GTX 760 bringing a new mid-range model to the market as well.

Today, though, we're looking at something a little higher-end than that. The highest model under the new GTX 700 series, the GTX 780, sits as the second fastest model in the NVIDIA line up. The GTX TITAN continues to sit at the top of the list. As much as we love that model, though, it's hardly the best representative of value.

Today we're checking out the GTX 780. This particular one is from the folks over at MSI and falls under the new Gaming Series which is something we've seen them use under both the motherboard and video card category so far. We've mentioned before and we'll quickly say it again, it's great to see MSI create some unity between the video card and motherboard department. This is something that's been missing and we're hoping that it works for them as we're really liking what we're seeing so far. Let's get into just what exactly we're dealing with today.

Package

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Checking out the box you can see the design is under the new Gaming Series and it looks great. The front of the box has got the model and the series name, while the bottom left corner shows we're dealing with an OC Edition video card. Looking at the back of the box you can see some of the main features with one of the big ones being the Twin Frozr IV cooler, along with the Military Class 4 feature.

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Moving inside the box you can see it's a pretty standard setup with the quick User Guide, driver CD, DVI to VGA connector, dual Molex to 6-pin PCIe power connector, along with a 6-pin to 8-pin PCIe power connector.

The Card and Specifications

The Card

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Taking a look at the card we really don't see anything too out of the usual when looking at it against the recently reviewed MSI GeForce GTX 760 2GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC. We've again got the excellent Twin Frozr IV cooler that we saw on that video card and we've also again got the new black and red color scheme, which is part of the new Gaming Series.

You can see two large fans make up the cooler along with a massive heatsink behind them. Looking closer you can see we've got a number of heat pipes coming out the bottom that can be seen going through the heatsink. We'll have to wait and see if the cooler performs as well here on the GTX 780, as it did on the mid-range GTX 760.

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You can see a typical GTX 780 setup which sees a single 6-pin and 8-pin PCIe power connector, while closer to the front you can see two SLI connectors. Being the GTX 780 means that we're able to run up to four of these cards off the two SLI connectors.

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Finishing our look at the card you can see in the I/O department we've got two Dual-Link DVI connectors in the form of a DVI-D and DVI-I. Along with that you can see we've got a HDMI and DisplayPort connector to round connectivity off. You can also see the top half is taken up by a vent to let some of the hot air escape out the back of your case.

Specifications

Out of the box the reference GTX 780 comes in with a core clock of 863MHz which is pushed to 900MHz via Boost. As for the 3GB of GDDR5, that carries a 6008MHz QDR clock. While MSI have left the memory clock alone like most companies, they have pushed the core up to 902MHz, which is then pushed even higher again to 954MHz via Boost.

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Because we've already looked at a couple of GTX 780s, we're today taking the chance to overclock the MSI offering and see just what we're able to get out of it. Looking above you can see we managed to push the core up to 1020MHz, which is then pushed higher again to 1072MHz via Boost.

As for the 3GB of GDDR5, we managed to push that up to 6600MHz QDR. This is a strong overclock and should yield some strong performance.

Benchmarks - Test System Setup

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We would like to thank the following companies for supplying and supporting us with our test system hardware and equipment: Intel, ASUS and Corsair.

We've got the typical high-end line up of video cards in our graphs today. Alongside the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC which we've overclocked, we've also got the reference GTX 770 2GB and the Palit GTX 770 2GB, which we overclocked to 1180MHz on the core and 7600MHz QDR on the memory.

We've got ourselves a reference clocked GTX 780 3GB along with the expensive EVGA GTX TITAN 6GB SuperClocked. As for the AMD side, we've got the PowerColor PCS HD 7950 2GB, which we've overclocked to over 1100MHz on the core, alongside the reference AMD HD 7970 GHz Edition.

The FPS Numbers Explained

When we benchmark our video cards and look at the graphs, we aim to get to a certain level of FPS which we consider playable. While many may argue that the human eye can't see over 24 FPS or 30 FPS, any true gamer will tell you that as we climb higher in Frames Per Seconds (FPS), the overall gameplay feels smoother. There are three numbers we're looking out for when it comes to our benchmarks.

30 FPS - It's the minimum number we aim for when it comes to games. If you're not dropping below 30 FPS during games, you're going to have a nice and smooth gaming experience. The ideal situation is that even in a heavy fire fight, the minimum stays above 30 FPS making sure that you can continue to aim easily or turn the corner with no dramas.

60 FPS - It's the average we look for when we don't have a minimum coming at us. If we're getting an average of 60 FPS, we should have a minimum of 30 FPS or better and as mentioned above, it means we've got some smooth game play happening.

120 FPS - The new number that we've been hunting down over recent months. If you're the owner of a 120 Hz monitor, to get the most out of it you want to get around the 120 FPS mark. Moving from 60 FPS / 60 Hz to 120 FPS / 120 Hz brings with it a certain fluidity that can't really be explained, but instead has to be experienced. Of course, if you're buying a 120 Hz monitor to take advantage of 3D, an average of 120 FPS in our benchmark means that in 3D you will have an average of 60 FPS, which again means you should expect some smooth gameplay.

Why are some graphs incomplete?

Adding new game benchmarks is a long, tedious and time consuming task as every video card has to be re-tested in those new benchmarks. Because of that reason we have always just evaluated our benchmark line up every six months. To stay up to date and current with the latest benchmarks and games available, we've changed our approach to adding new benchmarks.

Our benchmark line up will progress and be updated as newer more intensive games with benchmarks comes to light. While this will mean that initially you may only see a single video card in those particular graphs, as the weeks go on and we test more and more video cards, the results will grow quickly. This will help keep our benchmark line up as up to date as possible as we introduce and remove games on a constant basis.

Benchmarks - 3DMark 11

3DMark 11

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.1

Developer Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com

Product Homepage: http://www.3dmark.com/3dmark11/

Buy It Here

3DMark 11 is the latest version of the world's most popular benchmark. Designed to measure your PC's gaming performance 3DMark 11 makes extensive use of all the new features in DirectX 11 including tessellation, compute shaders and multi-threading. Trusted by gamers worldwide to give accurate and unbiased results, 3DMark 11 is the best way to consistently and reliably test DirectX 11 under game-like loads.

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Straight away we can see some strong performance from the overclocked MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC. You can see we've got a good jump on the reference GTX 780 and we're actually ahead of the much more expensive GTX TITAN when it comes to the higher resolution Extreme Preset.

Benchmarks - 3DMark Fire Strike

3DMark Fire Strike

Version and / or Patch Used: 1

Developer Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com

Product Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com/benchmarks/3dmark

Buy It Here

Fire Strike is our new showcase DirectX 11 benchmark designed for high-performance gaming PCs. It is our most ambitious and technical benchmark ever, featuring real-time graphics rendered with detail and complexity far beyond what is found in other benchmarks and games today. Fire Strike will only be available in the Windows editions of 3DMark initially.

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Being one of the most recent additions to our benchmark lineup, we haven't got a ton to compare our MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC against. You can see the kind of performance increase we get, though, when compared to the overclocked Palit GTX 770 JetStream.

Benchmarks - Unigine Heaven Benchmark

Unigine Heaven Benchmark

Version and / or Patch Used: 3

Developer Homepage: http://www.unigine.com

Product Homepage: http://unigine.com/press-releases/091022-heaven_benchmark//

New benchmark grants the power to unleash the DirectX 11 potential in the gift wrapping of impressively towering graphics capabilities. It reveals the enchanting magic of floating islands with a tiny village hidden in the cloudy skies. With the interactive mode emerging experience of exploring the intricate world is ensured within reach. Through its advanced renderer, Unigine is one of the first to set precedence in showcasing the art assets with tessellation, bringing compelling visual finesse, utilizing the technology to the full extend and exhibiting the possibilities of enriching 3D gaming.

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Heaven performance looks great and we can really see some nice gains from the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC when we overclock it. You can also see at both resolutions that it comes out ahead of the GTX TITAN 6GB.

Benchmarks - Phantasy Star Online 2

Phantasy Star Online 2

Version and / or Patch Used: Standalone Benchmark

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark

Developer Homepage: http://www.sega.com/?t=EnglishUSA

Product Homepage: http://www.pso2.com/us/html/index.html

Play Phantasy Star Online 2 and experience revolutionary combat in an action-driven, free-to-play multiplayer online RPG from SEGA. Take a journey into an immersive sci-fi fantasy narrative and explore mysterious worlds to unravel their secrets. Join fellow adventurers and fight against the legions of darkness to banish them from the galaxy.

Score explanation: Less than 2000: Please adjust your game settings because the processing load is quite heavy.

2000 through 5000: The game runs fine at the setting, if you have room, you can adjust some settings.

5001+: The game works wonderfully at this setting.

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PSO2 always sees these massive gains when it comes to overclocking and here is no different. We see the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC jump way ahead of the competition, including a big increase over the GTX TITAN.

Benchmarks - Lost Planet 2

Lost Planet 2

Version and / or Patch Used: Standalone Benchmark

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark - Test A Scene 1

Developer Homepage: http://www.capcom.com/

Product Homepage: http://www.lostplanet2game.com/

Lost Planet 2 is a third-person shooter video game developed and published by Capcom. The game is the sequel to Lost Planet: Extreme Condition which is also made by Capcom, taking place ten years after the events of the first game, on the same fictional planet. The story takes place back on E.D.N. III 10 years after the events of the first game. The snow has melted to reveal jungles and more tropical areas that have taken the place of more frozen regions. The plot begins with Mercenaries fighting against Jungle Pirates. After destroying a mine, the Mercenaries continue on to evacuate the area, in which a Category-G Akrid appears and attacks them. After being rescued, they find out their evacuation point (Where the Category-G appeared) was a set-up and no pick up team awaited them. The last words imply possible DLC additions to the game, "There's nothing to be gained by wiping out snow pirates... unless you had some kind of grudge."

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Lost Planet 2 sees some excellent performance gains as well and you can see across the board we're able to come out ahead of the GTX TITAN 6GB at all resolutions. This is fantastic from a value point of view as the GTX TITAN 6GB is an expensive video card.

Benchmarks - Just Cause 2

Just Cause 2

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update

Timedemo or Level Used: Dark Tower

Developer Homepage: http://www.eidos.com/

Product Homepage: http://www.justcause.com/

Just Cause 2 employs the Avalanche Engine 2.0, an updated version of the engine used in Just Cause. The game is set on the other side of the world from the original Just Cause, on the fictional island of Panau in Southeast Asia. Panau has varied terrain, from desert to alpine to rainforest. Rico Rodriguez returns as the protagonist, aiming to overthrow the evil dictator Pandak "Baby" Panay and confront his former mentor, Tom Sheldon.

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We continue to see very strong numbers from the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC when overclocked. While we're not ahead of the GTX TITAN 6GB at all resolutions here, you can see as we climb higher up the resolution table, the MSI offering manages to sneak further and further ahead.

Benchmarks - F1 2012

F1 2012

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark

Developer Homepage: http://www.codemasters.com/uk/

Product Homepage: http://www.codemasters.com

In F1 2012 players will feel the unparalleled thrill of becoming a FORMULA ONE driver with a host of new features, wide-ranging technical and gameplay advancements and extensive competitive and co-operative multiplayer components. F1 2012 will feature all of the official teams, drivers and circuits from the 2012 FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP, including the debut of the 2012 FORMULA 1 UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX at Austin, Texas and the return of Germany's famous Hockenheim circuit to the calendar.

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Overclocked you can see not much changes compared to the reference card as we're pretty much bouncing off the FPS wall. You can see a bit of movement at 2560 x 1600, though, when we're a little off the 151 FPS wall.

Benchmarks - Metro Last Light

Metro Last Light

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark

Developer Homepage: http://www.4a-games.com/

Product Homepage: http://enterthemetro.com/ /

Metro: Last Light takes place one year after the events of Metro 2033, proceeding from the ending where Artyom chose to call down the missile strike on the Dark Ones. The Rangers have since occupied the D6 military facility, with Artyom having become an official member of the group. Khan, the nomad mystic, arrives at D6 to inform Artyom and the Rangers that a single Dark One survived the missile strike. Khan believes the Dark One is the key to humanity's future, and wants to make peace with it, while Ranger leader Colonel Miller wants to kill the creature due to its potential threat. Miller sends Artyom to the surface with a mission to kill the Dark One; he is accompanied by Anna, Miller's sarcastic daughter and the Rangers' best sniper.

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Again being one of our relatively new additions, Metro Last Light doesn't have a ton of results yet. Looking above, though, you can see overclocked we're able to get playable FPS at both 1680 x 1050 and 1920 x 1200.

Benchmarks - Dirt Showdown

Dirt Showdown

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark

Developer Homepage: http://www.codemasters.com/uk/

Product Homepage: http://www.codemasters.com/uk/dirtshowdown/360/

DiRT Showdown is the new arcade racing game from the team that brought you the award-winning DiRT series, uncaged in 2012. Pick up and play controls combine with electrifying events, frenzied crowds and stunning graphics to deliver high octane, dive in and drive thrills from event one.

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Dirt Showdown continues the trend of strong performance and you can see we've got playable FPS across the board that sees the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC when overclocked coming out ahead of the GTX TITAN 6GB, again.

Benchmarks - Nexuiz

Nexuiz

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark

Developer Homepage: http://www.alientrap.org/

Product Homepage: http://www.nexuiz.com/

Nexuiz is an Arena First Person shooter coming soon to consoles. Nexuiz is fast paced with extremely competitive game play. IllFonic brings Alientrap Software's Nexuiz to next-gen gaming consoles around the world while staying true to the game play refined over the years through development. IllFonic introduces a new Victorian influenced art style that is simultaneously futuristic and sophisticated. Nexuiz for consoles is powered by CryENGINE 3.

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Nexuiz sees some nice performance gains across the board which helps put out a very strong number at 1680 x 1050. Here and at the other resolutions we see we're again ahead of all our other cards including the GTX TITAN 3GB SuperClocked.

As soon as we move to 1920 x 1200, though, you can see our numbers are below the 60 FPS number that we're always on the hunt for to provide a smooth gaming experience.

Benchmarks - Sniper Elite V2

Sniper Elite V2

Version and / or Patch Used: Standalone Benchmark

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark

Developer Homepage: http://www.rebellion.co.uk/

Product Homepage: http://sniperelitev2.com/us/age.html

Sniper Elite V2 features detailed sniping simulation with advanced ballistics, taking into account gravity, wind, velocity, bullet penetration, aim stability and more. Guaranteed to provide players with the most realistic simulation of military sharpshooting yet available.

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Sniper Elite V2 continues to trend of very strong performance at all resolutions and again numbers that are ahead of the GTX TITAN 6GB SuperClocked.

Benchmarks - Sleeping Dogs

Sleeping Dogs

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark

Developer Homepage: http://eu.square-enix.com/en

Product Homepage: http://www.sleepingdogs.net/

The core gameplay of Sleeping Dogs consists of giving the player an open world environment in which to move around freely. Sleeping Dogs is played as an over-the-shoulder, third-person perspective action-adventure game with role-playing elements. The player controls Wei Shen, a Chinese-American police officer, as he goes undercover to infiltrate the Sun On Yee Triad organization. On foot, the player character has the ability to walk, run, jump, climb over obstacles and swim, as well as use weapons and martial arts in combat. Players also drive a variety of vehicles including cars, boats, and motorcycles.

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Sleeping Dogs numbers across the board are also fantastic and while you can see the overclocked MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC falls behind the GTX TITAN 6GB at 1680 x 1050 and ever so slightly at 1920 x 1200, when we get to 2560 x 1600, it manages to just sneak ahead.

Benchmarks - Far Cry 2

Far Cry 2

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.01

Timedemo or Level Used: Ranch Long

Developer Homepage: http://www.ubi.com/

Product Homepage: http://www.farcry2.com/

Buy It Here

The Dunia Engine was built specifically for Far Cry 2 by the award-winning Ubisoft Montreal development team. It delivers the most realistic destructible environments, amazing special effects such as dynamic fire propagation and storm effects, real-time night-and-day cycle, dynamic music system, non-scripted enemy A.I. and so much more.

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Far Cry 2 sees positive movement, but like we often see on these extremely high-end video cards, the extra performance isn't needed with strong numbers being seen on high-end reference offerings at all resolutions.

Benchmarks - Hitman Absolution

Hitman Absolution

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark

Developer Homepage: http://www.ioi.dk/

Product Homepage: http://hitman.com/

Hitman: Absolution is an action-adventure stealth game developed by I/O Interactive and published by Square Enix. It is the fifth entry in the Hitman game series, and runs on I/O Interactive's proprietary Glacier 2 game engine. Before release, the developers stated that Absolution would be easier to play and more accessible, while still retaining hardcore aspects of the franchise. The game was released on 20 November 2012, which is in the 47th week of the year (in reference to the protagonist, Agent 47).

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Across the board you can see that we hit the FPS wall which sees a minimum of 54 FPS and an average of 69 FPS. While we would of course much prefer a higher FPS wall, we do still have very playable numbers across the board here. Users of 120Hz monitors may be somewhat disappointed, though.

Benchmarks - Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark

Developer Homepage: http://www.nixxes.com/

Product Homepage: http://www.tombraider.com/us/base/agegate?refer=184&

Tomb Raider is an action-adventure platform video game. Published by Square Enix, Tomb Raider is the fifth title developed by Crystal Dynamics in the Tomb Raider franchise. As the first entry in a new Tomb Raider continuity, the game is a reboot that emphasizes the reconstructed origins of the culturally influential lead character Lara Croft. Tomb Raider was released on 5 March 2013 for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Microsoft Windows to universal critical acclaim.

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Tomb Raider sees a nice boost over the reference card which sees the numbers float slightly ahead of the GTX TITAN SuperClocked 6GB at almost all resolutions. While our 2560 x 1600 numbers look good with a 41 FPS minimum, we'd prefer the average to sit a little higher than 53 FPS for a more solid gameplay experience.

Benchmarks - BioShock Infinite

BioShock Infinite

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update

Timedemo or Level Used: Built in Benchmark

Developer Homepage: http://irrationalgames.com/

Product Homepage: http://www.bioshockinfinite.com

BioShock Infinite is a first-person shooter video game and the third installment in the BioShock series. Previously known as "Project Icarus", it is being developed by Irrational Games and was released worldwide on the Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 platforms on March 26, 2013. BioShock Infinite is not part of the storyline of previous BioShock games but features similar gameplay concepts and themes.

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BioShock Infinite sees some great performance gains and compared to the reference card you can see our 2560 x 1600 FPS moves from 54 FPS to the same 63 FPS seen on the more expensive EVGA GTX 780 TITAN 6GB.

Benchmarks - High Quality AA and AF

High Quality AA and AF

While we test all our games with maximum in-game settings, turning on Anti-Aliasing (AA) and Antistrophic Filtering (AF) helps take the intensity of our testing to another level.

Here we see video cards go from playable FPS to an unplayable FPS and the real power houses continue to help break that 60 FPS mark we always aim for to provide a smooth gaming experience.

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While we do see some gains, just like our non-AA and AF tests for Far Cry 2, performance is ultimately very strong at both resolutions.

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With limited results there's not a whole lot we can talk about under Metro Last Light when it comes to comparing to other cards. What we can tell you, though, is even the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC when overclocked isn't able to hit the 60 FPS number we want at either resolution.

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Just Cause 2 sees some strong gains with AA and AF turned on which again puts us ahead of the GTX TITAN 6GB SuperClocked. More importantly, though, we've got playable numbers at both resolutions.

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Sleeping Dogs sees some great gains here and you can see the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC when overclocked is the only setup here that's able to break the 60 FPS mark at 1920 x 1200. 2560 x 1600, though, you can see clearly isn't an option.

Temperature Test

The temperature of the core is pulled from MSI Afterburner with the max reading used after a completed run off 3DMark Vantage and the Performance preset.

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With a 69c load temperature, you can see the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC when overclocked manages further perform exceptionally well.

This compares to the overclocked reference card which sits at 80c when overclocked - enough said.

Sound Test

Pulling out the TES 1350A Sound Level Meter we find ourselves quickly yelling into the top of it to see how loud we can be.

After five minutes of that we get a bit more serious and place the device two CM away from the fan on the card to find the maximum noise level of the card when idle (2D mode) and in load (3D mode).

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The good thing is that the lower temperature isn't coming at the cost of a massive amount of noise. At 62.4dB you can see we're sitting in the middle of the pack, which is acceptable considering what's on offer with this MSI video card.

Power Consumption Test

Using our PROVA Power Analyzer WM-01 or "Power Thingy" as it has become quickly known as to our readers, we are now able to find out what kind of power is being used by our test system and the associated graphics cards installed. Keep in mind; it tests the complete system (minus LCD monitor, which is plugged directly into AC wall socket).

There are a few important notes to remember though; while our maximum power is taken in 3DMark06 at the same exact point, we have seen in particular tests the power being drawn as much as 10% more. We test at the exact same stage every time; therefore tests should be very consistent and accurate.

The other thing to remember is that our test system is bare minimum - only a SSD hard drive is used with a single CD ROM and minimal cooling fans.

So while the system might draw 400 watts in our test system, placing it into your own PC with a number of other items, the draw is going to be higher.

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Power numbers are fairly typical. Overclocked you can see we're sitting at a little under 500 Watt when under load.

A good quality 700+ Watt power supply isn't going to have an issue with a setup like this.

Pricing, Availability and Final Thoughts

Hitting us at $659.99 at the time of writing, the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC comes in at a strong price point which sits only $10 higher than reference designed versions. The big issue behind the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC is the same that's seen on every other non-reference GTX 780 3GB at the moment.

It's got a little "Out of Stock" label sitting next to it and to be honest, it's for good reason. The GTX 780 in itself is a great model and the non-reference cards we've looked at are a nice improvement on the reference design - especially when it comes to heat numbers. When you combine the fact that these non-reference variants are going to set you back only $10 - $20 more than a reference design card, you'd really be crazy to choose a reference offering over a non-reference one and looking over at Newegg, it's obvious that everyone feels the same.

In typical video card fashion the bundle side of things is on the light side, but we know that the hero of any video card package is the video card itself. In typical fashion MSI has done a great job here and created a really strong video card that clearly stands out against the reference design in a big way.

The Twin Frozr IV cooler is, as always, excellent and you can see that it sits a good 11c cooler at load when compared to the reference cooler. That's a decent chunk, especially when you consider the reference cooler is throwing out 80c, a number that while is fine, is still one that we feel is a little too high.

Combing all this with the new black and red color scheme that is brought to the table via the new Gaming Series tag and you've got yourself a great version of the new GTX 780 3GB. As much as you'd probably like to pick up a GTX 780 3GB straight away, we would really recommend that you pre-order a model like the MSI GTX 780 3GB Twin Frozr Gaming OC (and wait) instead of the reference one, so you can get it as soon as it's back in stock.

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Shawn takes care of all of our video card reviews. From 2009, Shawn is also taking care of our memory reviews, and from May 2011, Shawn also takes care of our CPU, chipset and motherboard reviews. As of December 2011, Shawn is based out of Taipei, Taiwan.

We openly invite the companies who provide us with review samples / who are mentioned or discussed to express their opinion. If any company representative wishes to respond, we will publish the response here. Please contact us if you wish to respond.

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