MSI GeForce GTX 1080 Ti GAMING X Review

Published: Apr 6th 2017, 19:31 GMT

Performance: 100%

The GTX 1080 Ti is no doubt the best card for 4K gaming right now. This is the resolution that puts other GeForce cards far behind. We can’t yet say it’s a perfect 4K/60FPS/ULTRA experience as in few games (The Division, Deux Ex MD and Ghost Recon Wildlands) we are not reaching that framerate. Of course, ultra preset is barely the best choice in most cases, but it does put all cards to their knees and that’s what we were testing in this review.

There is currently no competition in this segment for GTX 1080 Ti, even SLI or CrossFire configuration would never give you the same experience. We provided the following table as a quick overview of GTX 1080 Ti performance compared to GTX 1080 and 1070:

GeForce GTX1080Ti108010701080Ti108010701080Ti10801070
Battlefield 1100%80%66%100%80%64%100%75%61%
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided100%76%60%100%75%58%100%72%56%
The Division100%78%40%100%75%60%100%75%60%
Ghost Recon: Wildlands100%80%69%100%81%66%100%76%63%
Metro: Last Light100%81%68%100%82%68%100%77%61%
Rainbow Six: Siege100%78%65%100%77%62%100%73%60%
Rise of the Tomb Raider100%85%68%100%76%60%100%72%57%
Sniper Elite 4100%87%69%100%74%58%100%70%57%
Total War: Warhammer100%99%95%100%86%70%100%74%60%
Witcher 3100%76%59%100%75%59%100%72%57%

Overclocking: 95%

As I mentioned earlier, this card is easily reaching 2.0 GHz mark (2025-2050 MHz). To get the most out of this card we need to use an unofficial build of Afterburner, which will unlock full voltage control. We were lucky to hit stable 2070 MHz with custom voltage curve during our test, however it was only suitable for benchmarking, not daily use. Overclocking is not the same for cards, so your sample may clock higher or lower, depending how lucky silicon lottery was to you.

Most of end users should stay with default Gaming profile. There is no point of installing Gaming App if you need OC Mode, as performance gain is minimal.

Cooling design & build quality: 95%

The Twin Frozr VI cooler is thick and heavy, but it does the job. There was no coil whine, no fan buzzing and no problem with sagging (thanks to backplate and baseplate).

During all tests GPU temperature did not exceed 70C. Idle temperature depends on Zero Frozr technology. If you don’t mind the fans spinning at reasonably low RPM you should expect around 30C. If you want silent operation then you should expect around 51C when the card is idle.

The card is full custom design with 8+2 phase power delivery through dual 8-pin power connectors. The I/O bracket has non-reference display output configuration: two DisplayPorts, two HDMIs and one DVID port (in other words, this card is ready for head mounted displays out of the box).

Price & bundles: 90%

The GTX 1080 TI GAMING X is available for around 749 USD and €825. That’s around 50 USD/EUR more than Founders Edition. I think that’s a reasonable price, considering that there are more expensive solutions. The game bundle depends on current promotions.

Closing thoughts

There is no denying that GTX 1080 Ti is faster than anything NVIDIA is currently offering under 1000 USD, but should MSI GTX 1080 Ti GAMING X be the card of your choice?

Having tested few MSI cards in the past I knew what to expect and what to look into. MSI GAMING X delivers on all fronts. This card is near silent under load and basically noiseless when Zero Frozr technology is utilized. It ships with widely tested and approved Twin Frozr VI design but in a thicker form. Sure, it’s red and glowing with red lights, but those lights can be turned off and most users will have it installed horizontally, so the cooler shroud won’t even be visible. Of course, if you want something else, MSI will likely deliver more color schemes, as they did with Quick Silver. But GAMING X is something more. This is the most powerful GTX 1080 Ti currently available from MSI. It’s not cheap and it’s not designed for everyone, but it’s quiet, fast and packed with features.

The MSI GTX 1080 Ti GAMING X simply does not disappoint and I recommend that you consider this particular model for your 4K gaming rig.

Review Contents
Page 1Overview MSI GeForce GTX 1080 Ti GAMING X
Page 2A closer look MSI GeForce GTX 1080 Ti GAMING X
Page 3Testing platform & methodology
Page 4Overclocking MSI GeForce GTX 1080 Ti GAMING X
Page 5STABILITY GPU Temperature ● Core Clock ● GPU Usage ● Memory Usage
Page 6Benchmarks 3DMark ● VRMark ● Unigine
Page 7DirectX 12 Battlefield 1
Page 8DirectX 12 Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
Page 9DirectX 12 The Division
Page 10Vulkan Doom
Page 11DirectX 11 Ghost Recon: Wildlands
Page 12DirectX 12 HITMAN
Page 13DirectX 11 Metro: Last Light
Page 14DirectX 11 Rainbow Six: Siege
Page 15DirectX 12 Rise of the Tomb Raider
Page 16DirectX 12 Sniper Elite 4
Page 17DirectX 12 Total War: Warhammer
Page 18DirectX 11 The Witcher 3
Page 19Conclusion

MSI GeForce GTX 1080 Ti GAMING X Review WhyCry


Performance - 100  %
Cooling and Design - 95  %
Overclocking - 95  %
Price and Bundles - 90  %

Efficient cooling solution
0dB technology
Full custom design
VR-Ready connectors
2.5 slot card may not fit into all builds
More expensive than Founders Edition