Meet The R9 380X

My review sample is an ASUS Strix 380X OC which actually uses a variation of the Strix DCII cooler, to great effect. The shroud and massive heatsink, with it's thick heatpipe and the installed backplate are an attractive and effective package. It's not understated by any means, with the slightly "tribal" flourish standing out, but it's not an ugly card either.

 ASUS Strix R9 380X OC
Stream Processors2048
Compute Units32
Compute Performance4 TFLOPs
Clock Speed1030MHz
Memory Bus256-bit
Memory Clock1425MHz
Die Size359mm²
Price $239
Power Connectors2 x 6-Pin

This particular card is of the OC variety, thus the core clock has been upped from the nominal 970MHz to a much more capable 1030MHz. And while it wasn't overclocked for this review, there seems to be some headroom left, especially with the cooler, making for even more performance possible from this particular package.

ASUS is just one partner that's launching a card today, with Gigabyte, XFX, Sapphire, HIS and PowerColor all partnering up with their custom cooled variants.

The R9 380X is being billed as a product that's capable of providing a good experience at 1440P and below. That isn't to say that it isn't capable of providing a satisfying experience at some titles at 4K, just that it likely won't meet the expectations of enthusiasts. From my experience, even Battlefront ran at a steady, albeit lower, framerate that was more than acceptable even for online play. This is likely a result of good optimization and a relatively wide memory bus with adequate VRAM attached. That positive result doesn't carry over to all games, though it's possible that with the right combination of settings, 4K can be a good choice.

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