Sapphire Nitro Radeon R9 Fury Review

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Jan 12, 2016
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Introduction

AMD’s Fiji Pro and Sapphire’s Nitro

About six months ago the cut down variant of the Fiji based GPU known as Fiji Pro was unleashed to the world.  Known as Fiji Pro and packing 3584 stream processors along with 4gb of HBM on a 512bit bus we saw limited launch with only two graphics cards, one of which we previously reviewed here.

WCCFTech AMD Radeon R9 Fury X2 AMD Radeon R9 Fury X AMD Radeon R9 Nano AMD Radeon R9 Fury AMD Radeon R9 290X
GPU Fiji XT x 2 Fiji XT Fiji XT Fiji Pro Hawaii XT
Stream Processors 8192 4096 4096 3584 2816
GCN Compute Units 128 64 64 56 44
Render Output Units 128 64 64 64 64
Texture Mapping Units 512 256 256 224 176
GPU Frequency TBA Up to 1050Mhz Up to 1000 MHz Up to 1000 MHz 1000Mhz
Memory 8GB HBM (4 GB Per Chip) 4GB HBM 4GB HBM 4GB HBM 4GB GDDR5
Memory Interface 4096-bit x 2 4096bit 4096bit 4096bit 512bit
Memory Frequency 500Mhz 500Mhz 500 MHz 500Mhz 1250Mhz
Effective Memory Speed 1Gbps 1Gbps 1Gbps 1Gbps 5Gbps
Memory Bandwidth 1024 GB/s 512GB/s 512GB/s 512GB/s 320GB/s
Cooling Liquid Liquid, 120mm Radiator Air, Single Fan. Custom AIB Solutions Later Air, Custom AIB Solutions Air, Single Blower Fan
Performance (SPFP) 17.2 TFLOPS 8.6 TFLOPS 8.19 TFLOPS 7.2 TFLOPS 5.6 TFLOPS
TDP TBA 275W 175W 275W 250W
Power Connectors Dual 8-Pin Dual 8-Pin 8-Pin Dual 8-Pin 6+8 Pin
GFLOPS/Watt TBA 31.3 47.1 26.2 19.3
New Prices TBA $649 $499 $549 $299 (Retail)
Launch Date Early 2016 24th June 2015 7th September 2015 10th July 2015 24th October 2013

But why a re-launch six months later? For us to really understand why we need to compare the previous Tri-X model and the new updated Nitro model.  That all starts with the PCB, while the original featured the same reference pcb layout that the fury x employed, while that made for easy waterblock compatibility it also limited what Sapphire was able to do with the card itself and forced them to build around a foundation.  With the Nitro card Sapphire was able to build it from the ground up to their demands with an enhanced 6-phase circuit and an 8 layer pcb that helps lower vrm temperatures (unable to validate due to sensors not reading in GPUZ).  They were also able to incorporate a dual bios switch that can regulate power draw; the default BIOS limits the TDP to 260w and a target temperature of 75C, the second BIOS option allows for 300w and a target temperature of 80C.  Sapphire also changed the chokes to Black Diamond in order to combat the known coil whine exhibited by gpu’s in the Fury lineup I am happy to report that outside of loading screens in FarCry 4 and Hitman Absolution I experienced no noticeable coil whine.

This version of the Tri-X cooling solution has been beefed up as well and unfortunately extends down into an extra slot essentially making this a 2 ½ slot cooling solution.  The results however are more than worth this sacrifice.  Sapphire is touting this to be their “most efficient cooling solution ever built by the company”.  Featuring an array of heatpipes including a 10mm one connected via a solid copper plate and cooled by three 90mm fans that sit idle until the gpu hits a certain temperature.  They use a die cast bracket to connect the heatsink to the card to aid in supporting the 12” monster.  And on the backside feature a love it or hate it designed aluminum backplate.

Coming in at core clock of 1050mhz makes this the fastest factory clocked Fury card on the market at an MSRP of $549, it does come in a standard version as well for an MSRP of $539 for those who want to save a few dollars and overclock on their own.

Sapphire Radeon R9 Fury Nitro Specifications:

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