ASUS Radeon R9 280X DirectCU II TOP 3GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

With the NDA from AMD lifted (and a day late, due to some misinformation) – I present to you my review of the said card, and I will be comparing it to the existing HD 7970 Ghz Edition GPU.

ASUS Radeon R9 280X DirectCU II 3GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

Here are some photos of the card – it looks just like any other Asus card with Direct CU II cooler BUT it’s a lot bigger. Really a lot bigger. I thought my Sapphire HD 7970 Ghz Edition with Vapor-X cooler was big enough but this is even bigger.

ASUS Radeon R9 280X DirectCU II 3GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

6pin + 8pin PCI-E. In case you didn’t know, the Sapphire HD 7970 GHz Edition 3GB GDDR5 VAPOR-X that I’ll be using to compare with the Asus R9 280X DCU2 uses 8pin + 8pin PCI-E configuration.

ASUS Radeon R9 280X DirectCU II 3GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

On another note – I love it that the Asus card has 2 LED for each PCI-E connector. It’s red when not connected, green when all system’s are go!

ASUS Radeon R9 280X DirectCU II 3GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

Full details at the Offical Product Page

Here’s the GPU-Z detail of the R9 280X on Catalyst 13.4.

ASUS Radeon R9 280X DirectCU II 3GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

Here’s the GPU-Z detail of the R9 280X on Catalyst 13.11 Beta drivers.

ASUS Radeon R9 280X DirectCU II 3GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

And here’s the Sapphire HD 7970 Vapor-X. Very similar, right?

ASUS Radeon R9 280X DirectCU II 3GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

One thing I need to highlight is that the R9 280X refused to work with my Intel Core i5-2500K + Z77 chipset combo, despite it worked fine with the HD 7970. It would power on for some 12 seconds and shutdown on it’s own. It wasn’t a PSU issue either as I even tested it on a 1300w setup. In the end, I swapped the processor and board to Core i5-4670K with Z87 chipset and it all worked fine.

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