Conclusion

The road to Ada was sure an exciting one. We got to see various rumors, leaks, and speculation & now we finally have the final product in our hands. There was sure a lot of hype surrounding the RTX 40 series cards and we will see whether the flagship card lives up to the expectations or not.

How much more performance will the custom models get me?

One of the main questions that one would ask is about the net performance upgrade that a custom model will offer over the Founders Edition. Considering that the SUPRIM X and SUPRIM Liquid X are coming in at a premium, one should expect better performance and with a slight increase in clocks and lots of engineering put into the coolers, you can see anywhere from 5-8% higher performance with a custom model but performance is just one part of the equation. There's also the matter of thermals, the power numbers, and the overall overclocking uplift that these cards can deliver & also sustain.

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Both cards are able to hit over 3 GHz with ease. The SUPRIM Liquid can hit that number more often due to its lower temps opening up more space but at the end, with its full unlocked power limit, the 4090 SUPRIM X can hit up to 3150 MHz which is a superb clock speed and something that last-gen cards could only achieve on LN2 cooling.

Air-Cooler or Liquid Cooler, Which to Get?

Both cards have their market and while I am personally an air-cooler guy, I would say MSI has built an absolute stunner of a card in the form of their MSI SUPRIM Liquid X. The SUPRIM X averaged in at around 58-60C in gaming while the SUPRIM Liquid X averaged at around 48-50C. The Liquid X is coming at a lower power limit of 530W which should take away some of its overclocking potential versus the SUPRIM X. The SUPRIM X takes things up a notch with its 550W power limit & really gives the 4090 FE a punch but also runs at a much warmer thermal load of around 70C.

But I would say that the SUPRIM X is a much bulkier card that weighs over 2Kg and also comes in at a 3.8-slot design. The SUPRIM Liquid X is more manageable for something like a Mid-tower or even a mini-ITX setup if you have enough space for an extra 240mm radiator or use an air cooler for the CPU. Going the 240mm radiator route makes it easier for compatibility versus a 360mm rad which may not fit in most Mini-ITX chassis. Furthermore, having your GPU liquid-cooled will mean that you won't have to worry about airflow much in a compact PC. And those MSI GALE P12 fans really work like wonder, delivering some of the quietest load operations even at 100% load.

Worth Paying An Extra $100-$150 Over The GeForce RTX 4090 FE?

The MSI GeForce RTX 4090 SUPRIM Liquid X is currently listed for $1749.99 US while the MSI GeForce RTX 4090 SUPRIM X is listed for $1699.99 US. That's $150 and $100 US over the RTX 4090 Founders Edition, respectively. Whether this is worth it depends on your use case. As I have stated, there are only three or four liquid-cooled variants of the 4090 out there and SUPRIM X is the only one with a 240mm radiator. If you are limited in terms of size within your PC and only have room for a 240mm rad, then this is the only card that you can get. The other 360mm variants do come in at a higher premium of $1899-$1999 US.

The MSI SUPRIM X on the other hand is a juggernaut with a massive cooler and lots of overclocking potential. It delivers amazing thermal performance and the acoustics are also better than the RTX 4090 FE which is a major plus. There's no evident coil whine on either card and they seem to clock pretty much the same except the SUPRIM X ends up being victorious in all cases by a few percentage points. If it's all about aesthetics then the 4090 Founders Edition is a looker, but if you want to go the meaner route, then 4090 SUPRIM X is well worth the price. For small form factor use cases, the 4090 SUPRIM Liquid X is a fantastic option.

Conclusion - Custom GeForce RTX 4090 Models Are Well Worth The Price

MSI has updated its SUPRIM lineup with killer new products to mark the launch of NVIDIA's RTX 40 series family. The SUPRIM Liquid X is without a doubt one of the best look custom designs, adding liquid cooling to the mix and delivering under 50C temps while gaming in a compact design while the SUPRIM X breaks ground with a humongous heatsink and a powerful PCB that is meant to rip apart any benchmark that you throw at it.

Products mentioned in this post

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