GIGABYTE R9 280X WindForce 3X OC Review

👤by Richard Weatherstone Comments 📅08-12-13
First Look

The huge 3x Windforce cooler smothers the PCB in its entirety. The Windforce cooler is not the 'new, all metal design instead it has the sculpted plastic brace which is no bad thing as we actually prefer this design to the new one. The three smoked black fans all have translucent blades which force cool air down onto the monolithic heatsink below.

Despite recently making the shift to black PCBs, this version (ver 1) of the Windforce OC features the familiar blue PCB. So you have a choice, if you want a black PCB go for the version two. Have a blue themed PC, version 1 is what you want. That is of course of the PCB colour matters to you. You will also notice that the rear of the board features a small backplate to the VRM area. This serves to even the load of the separate heatsink which we will see when we remove the main cooler on the next page.

The dimensions of the GIGABYTE R9 280X could be a stumbling point for anyone who owns a smaller case as the card measures L=285mm W=126mm H=38mm. Being a twin slot design it will take up two PCI(e) slots.

To power the card you will need both a 6-pin and 8-pin PCIe power connectors coupled to a 600w PSU (minimum recommended).

Being and AMD card you will be happy to know this GPU is CrossfireX capable meaning you can add more cards from the same family to boost the performance significantly thanks to excellent crossfire scaling.

At the input/output end of the card we find the usual connectivity of DVI-I, mini DisplayPort x 2 and HDMI ports. This card is capable of supporting the new 4K resolution of 4096 X 2160 via a single HDMI port. We have yet to see how much grunt is required to drive a 4K monitor but watch this space as we have one lined up which we will be giving the usual Vortez treatment.

Let's take a closer look at the card...

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