AMD launched their Polaris architecture earlier this year with the flagship Radeon RX 480 graphics card, and while it isn't a GTX 1080 competitor, it's a well-priced graphics card from AMD that handles 1080p and 1440p gaming without a problem - with some juice left for some VR gaming, too.
SAPPHIRE has been one of the best board partners of AMD, making great Radeon graphics cards over the past many years - and now we have SAPPHIRE stepping it up with their Nitro gaming series of graphics cards. The flagship Polaris-based Nitro graphics card from SAPPHIRE is the Nitro+ Radeon RX 480 8GB, which is a great-looking card with excellent performance in more ways than one.
With the Nitro+ RX 480 8GB priced at $280 on Amazon, it's $50 more than the 4GB version, which might be fine for 1080p gamers wanting the same performance, but a nice discount on the price. Comparing this to an equivalent GeForce GTX 1060, we have the ASUS GTX 1060 6GB ROG Strix at $309 - offering a little more performance, while coming in at around 10% more expensive.
FreeSync vs. G-Sync: For gamers who want to get a cheaper high-end monitor, they can opt for AMD FreeSync-based monitors. FreeSync monitors are sometimes over $100 cheaper than G-Sync based monitors, letting gamers spend that additional $100 onto a graphics card. This means that while the GTX 1060 might be faster, the RX 480 is cheaper overall by a large margin thanks to the reduced cost of gaming monitors rocking FreeSync technology.
SAPPHIRE's Nitro+ RX 480 8GB
SAPPHIRE teases that the 14nm FinFET process on the new Polaris architecture provides enough performance for 60FPS+ at Ultra settings in many of the best-looking games out right now.
VR gaming is something you can do on the SAPPHIRE Nitro+ Radeon RX 480, with it easily beating the Radeon R9 380.
The Nitro+ Radeon RX 480 has two HDMI ports, with SAPPHIRE thinking of gamers who want to plug a VR headset in - but don't want to have no HDMI port left for their TV or HDMI-based monitor.
AMD's new Polaris architecture is powering the Radeon RX 400 series, including the Nitro+ Radeon RX 480 from SAPPHIRE.
HDR displays and TVs are slowly making their way to market, so you'll be safe knowing HDR capabilities are included on the Nitro+ Radeon RX 480.
SAPPHIRE is working on the great foundations of the Radeon RX 480 and the Polaris architecture, with 2304 stream processors, 8GB of GDDR5 RAM, and a 256-bit memory interface.
AMD has class-leading DX12 performance, with 16x more draw calls in 3DMark's API test, and up to 50% more FPS in Ashes of the Singularity.
SAPPHIRE has deployed its impressive Dual-X cooler on the Nitro+ Radeon RX 480, with 2 x 95mm fans, and redesigned airflow through the Nitro Free Flow technology, allowing the card to be 10% quieter than the previous cooler from SAPPHIRE.
Starting off with the front of the Nitro+ RX 480, we have the Dual-X cooler front and center.
The rear of the card sports a mean-looking silver/black backplate, with the LED mode switch in the bottom left of the picture (at the top of the card).
Just a single 8-pin PCIe power connector is required.
At the top of the card, we have the LED system and SAPPHIRE branding - with the V BIOS switch at the top, and LED button on the back.
SAPPHIRE includes 2 x HDMI 2.0 ports, 2 x DisplayPort, and 1 x DVI on the Nitro+ RX 480.
PRICING: You can find the SAPPHIRE Nitro+ Radeon RX 480 8GB for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link below to see real-time pricing for the best deal:
United States: The SAPPHIRE Nitro+ Radeon RX 480 8GB retails for $280 at Amazon.
United Kingdom: The SAPPHIRE Nitro+ Radeon RX 480 8GB retails for £250 at Amazon UK.
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