For those thinking that this is just another graphics card review, well you would be most certainly wrong. Yeah sure, it’s a load of benchmarks run on a new graphics card and that happens all the time, but what this review shows is that AMD are back fighting; something they not only needed from a PR perspective, but what we needed as enthusiasts and PC gamers.
So what makes it a special card? Well it’s the first time HBM technology has been used inside of a graphics card which yields many different benefits such as a much higher bandwidth to watt ration than GDDR5. It also uses up 94% less space on the PCB which does mean manufacturers in the future could potentially increase ROP counts and shader core counts, without having the need to extend the PCB. From a regular Joe point of view, it doesn’t really mean much and why should it?; you buy a card, it plays the games at the frames you want, job done!
Speaking of frames, the R9 Fury X offers very competitive frame rates to a GTX 980 Ti/Titan X which given the pricing point, is highly competitive. I wouldn’t necessarily go out and buy a Fury X purely for HBM as the technology is still in the infantile states at this point, but with many AMD features such as DSR (dynamic super resolution) up scaling and support for up to 4 concurrent monitors thanks to Eyefinity, it makes it a very solid purchase.
One major concern I have however is the quality and stability of AMD’s drivers and their new Crimson software package. I had numerous issues with stability with the drivers and although this can happen with any graphics card, it would do it so sporadically on multiple systems, I think AMD have work to do in this area, but for performance gaming, they certainly do a fantastic job.
The AIO cooler does a superb job of cooling and this shows in our cooling performance charts; the Fury X absolutely dominates in this regard. The negative side however is under full load, the included fan can get a little loud, and in fact it’s louder than a regular GPU cooler in my opinion. This is obviously all oriented for performance and that’s what this XFX AMD R9 Fury X does!
For those looking for an AMD budget winning card, the Fury X isn’t exactly cheap; just under £500 in the UK and $630 in the US. It’s an expensive offering, but with this being a flagship card, you should take that into consideration. Does AMD rival NVIDIA? Of course and hopefully they always will and if prices of the Fury X reflected GTX 980 pricing, it would be a no brainer. If only there was a slightly cut down Fury X model, at a much better price point…oh there is and it’s called the R9 Fury!
Huge thanks to XFX for sending a sample in for review.
– Great performance
– AIO cooler keeps the Fury X cool as could be
– HBM is nice to finally see implemented
– Superb design and looks very premium
– Competes with the GTX Titan X when overclocked, which is superb!
– 120mm fan gets loud when card is under full load
– AIO cooler as standard doesn’t give the right impression for efficiency
– Cheaper than the GTX 980 Ti
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