HIS Radeon R9 280, 285, 280X, 290X IceQ X2

Published: 18th Oct 2014, 09:57 GMT

HIS Radeon R9 290X iPower IceQ X² Turbo Specifications

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe’ve been to Tonga and Tahiti, so now it’s time to visit Hawaii. The Radeon R9 290X is currently the fastest single-GPU graphics card AMD has to offer.

HIS interpretation of extreme performance is met with IceQ X2 cooling and custom PCB.

You should know though, that this is not the fastest R9 290X model in HIS line-up. There’s also R9 290X Hybrid, with Arctic Accelero cooler.

Our sample is clocked at 1040/5400 MHz for core and memory respectively. This is exactly 40 MHz faster core and 400 MHz faster memory.

Radeon R9 290X is equipped with 4GB GDDR5 memory across 512-bit interface. It means that this card has the highest bandwidth from all cards in this test: 346 GB/s.

Just like Radeon R9 285, R9 290X comes with four display outputs: DVI-I, DVI-D, HDMI and DisplayPort.

HIS Radeon R9 Series
HIS R9 280
IceQ X² OC
HIS R9 285
IceQ X² OC
HIS R9 280X iPower
IceQ X² Turbo
HIS R9 290X iPower
IceQ X² Turbo
PictureH280QMC3G2M_04_1600H285QMB2GD_04_1600H280XQMT3G2M_Gold_4_1600 H290XQMT4GD_05_1600
GPU CodenameTahiti PROTonga PROTahiti XTHawaii XT
Unified Cores1792179220482816
TMUs112112128176
ROPs32323264
Base Clock847 MHz938 MHz1000 MHz1040 MHz
Boost Clock953 MHz1050 MHz
Memory Clock1250 MHz1375 MHz1500 MHz1350 MHz
Memory3GB GDDR52GB GDDR53GB GDDR54GB GDDR5
Memory Bus384-bit256-bit384-bit512-bit
Bandwidth240 GB/s176 GB/s288 GB/s346 GB/s
Power Connectors6pin + 6pin6pin + 6pin8pin + 6pin8pin + 8pin
TDP200W190W250W290W

A closer look at HIS Radeon R9 290X iPower IceQ X² Turbo

The first thing you will notice by comparing HIS R9 290X to R9 280 series is the backplate. You can only get it by purchasing R9 290X (Turbo or non-Turbo model). The direction of the HIS logo bugged me, once installed it says SIH.

The other feature exclusive to R9 290 series is the special holder (as seen right on top of the card in first picture below). You can easily remove it, but I found it very useful while removing the card for other tests. The good example of its utility is that you will never burn yourself by accidental touching the heat pipes (which are often very hot after stress testing, obviously).

Moving forward to the PCB design, we should note that HIS R9 290X IceQ X2 is a fully custom graphics card. It means that not only is cooling  replaced with a more efficient solution, but that the board has also been designed from the scratch by HIS engineers. First thing to mention is more powerful VRM. This sample has 9 PWM phase design, ensuring more stable operation under higher usage. The PCB is equipped with two 8-pin power connectors, making sure the card always gets enough power.

The exclusive feature of Hawai-based models is dual-BIOS switch. You can either put the card into Silent or Standard (UBER) mode. What you should know about Silent mode is that R9 290(X) owners almost never use it. It’s a useful feature for people with reference models, where the cooling solution isn’t as good. Since silent mode also limits TDP and clock speeds, we are not using this mode in our review.

Physical specifications:

  • Width: 143 mm
  • Length: 297 mm
  • Height: 2-slot
  • Weight: 1025 g
  • Cooling: IceQ X2 (dual-fan)
  • Display outputs: DVI-D, DVI-I, HDMI, DisplayPort

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HIS Radeon R9 290X iPower IceQ X² Turbo packaging

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by WhyCry