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AMD Radeon R9 290X CrossFire

W1zzard

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#1
In this review, we put two AMD Radeon R9 290X cards into a CrossFire configuration, delivering massively improved framerates that will easily handle the latest and greatest titles. With the pair of cards retailing at just $100 more than a single GTX Titan, this is also quite an affordable combination.

Show full review
 
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#2
I was hoping for 5760x1080P performance benchmarks. Thanks for the writeup.
 
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#3
I think you need a new thumbnail now. This just doesn't seem appropriate anymore since the cards no longer need crossfire bridges:

 
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#4
70% for Titan and 100% for 290x crossfire, that's not a mere 30% increase of performance. From Titan's viewpoint, that's 100%/70% which gives 42.8% increase, it's 30% decrease only from 290x CF viewpoint.
 
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#5
I guess you don't have the setup to test, but I'm curious if frame pacing was fixed with this card.
 
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#6
As soon as I read the first paragraph my heart was filled with joy: $549!

Thanks for ending this madness AMD!!!
 
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#7
Awesome performance, and it sure gets better after few driver updates :toast:
 
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#8
I feel like the bang for buck factor significantly goes down using 2 in CrossFire, the performance gains are not very linear and seem to peak after about a 30-70% (depending on title) increase.
 
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#9
Blah.

I have this in my cart, but I dont know if my 500W PSU will hold for long ://
 
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#10
Wizz,

Please test it at 4K.
 
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#11
Power consumption? Alot?
 
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#12
Ah I do miss my x1900xts.
 

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#13
70% for Titan and 100% for 290x crossfire, that's not a mere 30% increase of performance. From Titan's viewpoint, that's 100%/70% which gives 42.8% increase, it's 30% decrease only from 290x CF viewpoint.
I agree but only a great AMD driver can fix the issue.. Still Im glad to keep what I got.. Nice try AMD but not from this guy.
 
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#14
On other review sites it seems that the 290X fixed the crossfire eyefinity/4K split screen frame pacing issues. The 280X and lower still has to deal with it though until a proper driver update is released.
 

W1zzard

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#15
Please send me a monitor :p

Right now I think it's stupid to buy a 4K monitor. New models will come out with HDMI 2.0, prices will go down a lot, and NVIDIA G-Sync could make it into new models.
 

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#16
Please send me a monitor :p

Right now I think it's stupid to buy a 4K monitor. New models will come out with HDMI 2.0, prices will go down a lot, and NVIDIA G-Sync could make it into new models.
I bought a LG 55" for 1200 bucks and it's 4k

two credit cards thick and lol it's amazing... roll it up baby!!! :D
 
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#17
Why write off the card based on the reference cooler, they have always been crap.

Non-reference 290X will change the game and make the temp/noise issues irrelevant. Or the card is cheap enough to make buying an aftermarket cooler worthwhile.

Not only that, with a decent cooler, Im sure this card will overclock something awesome and really pull ahead of titan.
 
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#18
Why write off the card based on the reference cooler, they have always been crap.

Non-reference 290X will change the game and make the temp/noise issues irrelevant. Or the card is cheap enough to make buying an aftermarket cooler worthwhile.

Not only that, with a decent cooler, Im sure this card will overclock something awesome and really pull ahead of titan.
Why doesn't the card come with a better cooler out of the box?

The fact that it doesn't is what creates these temp/noise issues to begin with.


Dunno about you but if i were to purchase this sort of card (high end card), which i'm not, i'd gladly pay more (within reason) if it came with proper cooling out of the box, but that's me ...

EDIT

How much more does a proper cooler cost anyways? $10? $15? $20? If that brought both noise and temps to a more acceptable level, wouldn't you pay the extra money?
 
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#19
Why doesn't the card come with a better cooler out of the box?
So it costs less monies and you can decide yourself which one to use.
Unless they put the void warranty sticker somewhere...
 
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#20
There also not going to wait for aftermarket coolers to release the card
 
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#21
How much more does a proper cooler cost anyways? $10? $15? $20? If that brought both noise and temps to a more acceptable level, wouldn't you pay the extra money?
To dissipate 300W you need a pretty massive cooler. They're usually around $75 retail like this.

But open air coolers are cheaper to produce than blower coolers, and since the resellers wouldn't be paying money for the first heatsink, I wouldn't expect them to cost any more than the blower. Manufacturers typically prefer blowers for reference cards because their cooling performance is less affected by case airflow, especially in multi-card scenarios. I think AMD didn't like the outcome of the HD 7990, which suffered in two card scenarios because of its open air cooling.

The delay in custom cooling the R9 290X probably just comes down to AMD's core design. AMD for some reason likes to recess their cores below the shims. Each model has a different core and shim size, and because of this each AMD card needs a specifically designed cooler with a special base made for it rather than a universal cooler that can be used for all cards.
 
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#22
To dissipate 300W you need a pretty massive cooler. They're usually around $75 retail like this.

But open air coolers are cheaper to produce than blower coolers, and since the resellers wouldn't be paying money for the first heatsink, I wouldn't expect them to cost any more than the blower. Manufacturers typically prefer blowers for reference cards because their cooling performance is less affected by case airflow, especially in multi-card scenarios. I think AMD didn't like the outcome of the HD 7990, which suffered in two card scenarios because of its open air cooling.

The delay in custom cooling the R9 290X probably just comes down to AMD's core design. AMD for some reason likes to recess their cores below the shims. Each model has a different core and shim size, and because of this each AMD card needs a specifically designed cooler with a special base made for it rather than a universal cooler that can be used for all cards.
The question was meant as how much more compared to the already in use cooler.

Also, it's completely different if the cooler manufacturer produces something that may end up being used in some cards as opposed to something that will be used on all reference cards: volume drives prices down.


Let's say, for the sake of argument, a cooler which provided both acceptable noise and temps for the card's normal mode (disregarding the uber mode here) costs $30 more then the one included and that drives the price to $579 for the reference model.

Now, do the math for the graphs with everything price related for $579 instead of the $549, keeping in mind the noise and temps will be better as well as there will be less drawbacks in the conclusion (from noise and temps) and answer me this: is the extra $30 worth it?
 

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#23
Non-reference 290X will change the game and make the temp/noise issues irrelevant
so far, everybody who I talked to, said that AMD doesn't allowed custom designs for 290X. This will probably change soon, maybe AMD just wants to sell more of their ref boards asap
 

tt_martin

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#25
At 2560x1600 and in its "Uber" mode, the R9 290X CrossFire offers 30% higher performance than the GTX TITAN and 26% higher performance than the GTX 690
At 2560x1600 and in its "Uber" mode, the R9 290X CrossFire offers 59% higher performance than the GTX TITAN and 32% higher performance than the GTX 690
Fixed that for You. Take some math classes.