PowerColor PCS+ R9 380 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

Yet another R9 380? Wait, it’s not. It’s PowerColor’s R9 380 that comes with 4GB RAM and it has a back plate too!

PowerColor PCS+ R9 380 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

As you can see from the image above, it also comes with PowerColor’s dual-blade fan design, I like it that it has only 5 blades as this makes maintenance a lot easier.

The shroud covers most part of the top of the heatsink, as you can see the card requires 2x 6-pin PCI-E to operate.

PowerColor PCS+ R9 380 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

From the bottom view the shroud seems to cover the heatsink as well, though part of the heatpipes are visible.

PowerColor PCS+ R9 380 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

What I think is most attractive with PowerColor cards is the backplate, lovely!

PowerColor PCS+ R9 380 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

Lastly of course is the view of the I/O panel.

PowerColor PCS+ R9 380 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

Last but not least, here’s the GPU-Z capture.

PowerColor PCS+ R9 380 4GB GDDR5 Graphic Card Review

More details at the official product page.

Test Setup

Processor Intel Core i5-4670K
RAM Kingston HyperX 2x 4GB DDR3 2400Mhz Kit
Motherboard Gigabyte GA-Z97X Gaming 3
Cooler NZXT Kraken X31
Monitor Dell U2414H
Power Supply FSP AURUM S 700W
Casing NZXT S340
Operating System Windows 8.1 Pro 64bit

Benchmarks

The closest (faster) card available for comparison would at goldfries’ lab is the R9 270X.

Unigine Heaven 4.0

Heaven 4.0
*NOTE : Details are set to maximum.
*NOTE : AA disabled in 4K test.

Card 1080p (avg)
PowerColor R9 380 4GB 35.7
Sapphire R9 380 2GB 36.5
AMD R9 270X 27.9

Metro Last Light

Heaven 4.0

Card 1080p (avg)
PowerColor R9 380 4GB 56.5
Sapphire R9 380 2GB 57.5
AMD R9 270X 41.5

Bioshock Infinite

Bioshock Infinite
Settings are at
2 – UltraDX11_DDOF | 2 – Custom | 1 – 16:9 | 4 – FullHD / 4K

Card 1080p (avg)
PowerColor R9 380 4GB 80.67
Sapphire R9 380 2GB 82.26
AMD R9 270X 54.91

Shadow of Mordor

Heaven 4.0
Settings : Set to maximum, V-sync off.

Card 1080p (avg)
PowerColor R9 380 4GB 51.49
Sapphire R9 380 2GB 21.78
AMD R9 270X 26.05

Yup, I can’t believe what I saw here. Games like Shadow of Mordor are known to hog VRAM but I never thought it’ll limit the potential of the card that much.

Grand Theft Auto V

Grand Theft Auto V
Settings : Set to Very High for every possible option. 8xAA enabled for Full HD test, AA Disabled for 4K test.

Card 1080p (avg)
PowerColor R9 380 4GB 27.35
Sapphire R9 380 2GB N/A
AMD R9 270X 21.17

Temperature

Furmark Burn-in Test was used to stress the card. Fan settings are at Auto. Room set to ~25c.

Card Idle(°C) Load (°C)
PowerColor R9 380 52 84
PowerColor R9 380 Full RPM 36 75

The fan design is awesome but at AUTO settings it hovers at around 65% RPM and my concern about PowerColor’s fan is that it tends to be noisy but it only happens from time to time, depending on the RPM.

Power Consumption

The stress was done with Furmark Burn-in Test. Power consumption reading was taken from the watt-meter, actual power draw by the entire system from the wall point. I’m using an FSP Aurum S 700W with 90% efficiency and the estimated system power draw (CPU, not including GPU) during Furmark test is 60w.

Card Sapphire R9 380
Furmark Burn-in 254
Estimated Actual System Draw 228
Estimated Card Power Draw 168

The Verdict

The PowerColor PCS+ R9 380 4GB GDDR5 retails at RM 949, it’s not exactly cheap considering it’s basically an R9 285 but for what it’s worth the card comes with 4GB RAM and has a cool looking backplate and that makes it a much better valued proposition as compared to the 2GB variants. Compared to the already extinct R9 280X cards, the R9 380 that’s based on Tonga GPU consumes less power and the 4GB RAM available on this model does give it better performance potential when more memory is required.

goldfries recommended

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1 Comment

  1. I’m just considering to buy a R9 380 with 4GB Edition but I didn’t really know which one that should I choose (supplier: Gigabyte, PowerColor, Sapphire, MSI). Can you make all review of R9 380 with 4GB GDDR5?

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