MSI Radeon R9 270 Gaming OC and Sapphire Dual-X R9 270 OC Video Card Review

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Temperature & Noise Testing

Temperatures are important to enthusiasts and gamers, so we took a bit of time and did some temperature testing on both Radeon R9 270 video cards

MSI Radeon R9 270 Gaming OC 2GB Idle Temperature:

r270-gaming-idle

Sapphire Dual-X R9 270 OC 2GB Idle Temperature:

sapphire-270-idle

 

The MSI Radeon R9 270 Gaming OC was found to idle at 25C with the fan running at right around 975 RPMs. The Sappphire Dual-X R9 270 OC wasn’t too far off that with an idle temp of 28C, but the fans were spinning at 1120 RPMs! It should be noted that the ambient room temperature was 22.0C (72F).

MSI Radeon R9 270 Gaming OC 2GB Gaming Temperature:

r270-gaming-load

Sapphire Dual-X R9 270 OC 2GB Gaming Temperature:

sapphire-270-gaming

The MSI Radeon R9 270 topped out at just 57C with the fans running at 1240 RPMs when gaming on it for an extended period of time.  The Sapphire Dual-X R9 270 hit 60C with the fans running at 2144 RPM.The clear winner when it comes to temperatures would have to be MSI as their card runs at a higher clock speed and runs cooler despite the fans spinning lower. Remember that MSI is using 95mm fan blades versus the 74mm found on the Sappphire Dual-X GPU cooler. 

After reviewing a bunch of the AMD Radeon R9 290 and R9 290X cards and seeing 94C load temperatures it is nice to once again see low temperatures!

temperature

We must have gotten a high leakage AMD Radeon R9 290 video card as our idle and load temperatures were pretty toasty. The AMD Radeon R9 290 has a temperature target setting of 95C by default and our reference card topped out at 94C when gaming and 41C when at idle. AMD said that the Radeon R9 290 and 290X should be about the same when it comes to temperature, but our Radeon R9 290 was running noticeably higher at idle. In fact, this is the highest idle temperature that we have seen in some time.

Sound Testing

We recently upgraded our sound meter to an Extech sound level meter with ±1.5dB accuracy that meets Type 2 standards. This meter ranges from 35dB to 90dB on the low measurement range, which is perfect for us as our test room usually averages around 36dB. We measure the sound level two inches above the corner of the motherboard with ‘A’ frequency weighting. The microphone wind cover is used to make sure no wind is blowing across the microphone, which would seriously throw off the data.

noise

The fan speeds and actual fan blade sizes greatly differ on these two Radeon R9 270 graphics cards, but we were shocked to find that the idle fan noise was pretty much identical at just over 40 dB.  When gaming though the MSI R9 270 Gaming fans only spun up to 1240RPM whereas the Sapphire Dual-X R9 270 OC fan blades went up to 2140 RPM.  You can easily hear this 900 RPM different and so our sound meter confirmed this by noting that the Sapphire card was over 4dB louder when gaming. Both have acceptable noise levels and are certainly quieter than your average card.

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  • Brian Blair

    Anyone want to buy my old MSI GTX 650 Ti 1GB $50? And no I will not ship it, You will have to be responsible for shipping it, I can’t understand how some people think you should just buy them a new car just because they are they! LOL get over yourself already! Anyway the Card was used by me for about 10 months, It still looks new and no dust, It still has the box it came in, Has the owners manual and the accessories, Every single thing that originally came in the box is still in the box, The card was even put back in it’s original static bag. The card was never pushed just gamed with, I did overclock it some to see what it could do and it actually overclocks very well, But I mostly just kept it at it’s stock clock speed of 928mhz. The highest I clocked it was 1080mhz and the memory I never really messed with it. But it has Hynix V-Ram so it should do decent. I was going to use it as a physx card with my R9 270, But thanks to fascist Nvidia locking the drivers if it detects a AMD card, I can’t use it, I guess Nvidia thinks they have the right to tell you what to do with your own property.

  • rich

    r wolf

  • Brian Blair

    The Higher the clock speed the higher the G-Flops get, Save money and buy the 270 non X and just set her at 1050 in CCC, And then you have the same 32.8 GPxels and the same 92.0 GTexels and the same 2.69 TFlops. And without having to use the same power draw as the X model. I am sure the X model can ultimately reach a higher clock speed in the end. But lets face it, The moment that a major GPU overclock is needed, is the moment a upgrade is needed. I will not lie I would rather have the X model. But It just did not make sense to me paying $20-$30 more dollars for a higher clock setting. I know $20-$30 dollars is not much to some people. But it is to me. That’s a case of Natural Light and bag of Beer Nuts. And some left over for gas money so I can give MADD a reason to exist! HAHAHAHA!

  • Brian Blair

    Best $179 I ever spent. You will not be disappointed buying the R9 270. It’s friggin power man!

  • Adino

    This is the latest comment,but whatever :P

    If I buy this card now,does they gave me any Battlefield 4?

    I will buy a MSI R9 270 (specifically the Gaming 2G BF4 version. Site : http://www.msi.com/product/vga/R9_270_GAMING_2G_BF4.html#overview)
    According to the site,they will gave me a free copy of BF4.My local store had one left in the stock,however I was unable to see the box.

    I was worried that I wouldn’t get any BF4,as I can buy better card from other brand BUT not getting any BF4.(Please take consideration that this is April 2014)

    What do you guys think,should I get this card or not?

    • Kai

      Don’t get it.

      Remember that the graphics card is permanent until you get a new one, and that it will be used to run any other game. Buying a graphics card because it comes with Battlefield defeats the purpose of buying the graphics card itself.

      Go buy yourself a better GPU and don’t buy one because it comes with a game. Graphics cards are expensive, buy one that you will be happy with, and that will last.

      By the way, I have the Sapphire Radeon R9 270 2GB GDDR5 Duel-X

      and it runs Battlefield 4 @ 60 FPS on High Settings. I recommend the Radeon R9 290 or 290x.

      MSI Radeon R9 290X: http://www.msi.com/product/vga/R9_290X_LIGHTNING.html

      Sapphire Radeon R9 290: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=8866844&SRCCODE=WEBGOOPA&cm_mmc_o=mH4CjC7BBTkwCjCV1-CjCE&gclid=CNuMm7mqk74CFYJqfgodrSgAjQ

      • Ashhong

        The dude is asking if he should get the card so that he can save ~$50 on Battlefield 4, and you recommend a card that is several hundred dollars more expensive? Clearly he wants to save money. Your 270 runs BF4 at 1080p @60FPS and you completely skip all the cards in the middle and go to the 290 lol. Ridiculous.

        • Brian Blair

          Yeah that is kind of a douche recommendation. I have had no problems maxing games with my R9 270. Not to mention he would have to spend more money buying a new PSU to power it. By the way I saw a dual fan Power Color R9 270 for $159.99 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814131545&cm_re=r9_270-_-14-131-545-_-Product

          That should save him money, LOL And he will get 2 free games like I did with my HIS, It won’t be BF4 but you can get Sleeping Dog’s Hitman Absolution, Alan Wake. And many more to choose from, I got Sleeping Dog’s and Alan Wake.

  • realdeal

    This review is very bias toward msi. Msi is not that better like it was represented in this review. Especially overclocking part, Ask yourself why they did not tested sapphire at gpu 1050, mem 1500, and power +20 ??? As you can see memory on sapphire can easily go to 1625, that means that is it BETTER MEMORY CHIP, at that matter most (beside GPU chip).

    This review is FAKE.

    • Matti Alexander Christensen

      most likely not, and no, they both use hynix memory chips, but sapphire uses better vrm. however the hynix memory seems to have a wall at 1500 mhz, meaning that going above that will decrease performance in many cases.
      so what we are seing is that the sapphire card can clock just as high, while using less power, and even go beyond the limits of the memory chips, even though its inefficient.

      • Brian Blair

        Wrong! Thy use E-6 Elpida Chips rated 6 Gbps at 1.6v , So that is why they overclock almost as good as Hynix. My His Model has Elpida and can go to 1500 and 1600, But I do not recommend anyone overclock V-Ram It is pointless anyway. The 270 already has a memory bandwidth of 179.2 GB/s a good number faster than the 7870′s was. And all your FPS gain will be in overclocking the GPU clock anyway. Overclocking the V-ram will just burn them up anyway and then you will get artifacts. So why risk it? Besides why would you need to overclock such a powerful GPU anyway? Makes no sense.

    • Ansau

      Your arguments are the fake:
      1- What we see is SOFTWARE LIMITATION. This is what you can reach with Catalyst. With MSI Afterburner or EVGA Precision X numbers could be higher.
      2- Yes, with Catalist you can push Sapphire much higher, but they also said they let to 1050MHz cause higher was unstable. And that means they reached its cap. We don’t know how much MSI can be pushed, but it’s easy to be higher than Sapphire (normally, higher base clocks allows higher OC clocks).
      3- Better clocks setting doesn’t mean better performance. 3DMark punctuations show you. MSI=5646, Sapphire=5467. MSI performs better with the same GPU clock and slightly slower memory clock.

      That doesn’t mean Sapphire is a bad choice, they have done a good job, just maybe MSI has done a killer.

      PD: Also, there’s a MSI promotion with BF4 for just +10€.

    • Brian Blair

      I don’t rally think it is biased to MSI. Look at PC mag’s review of my HIS R9 270. http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2430169,00.asp

      I was actually going to buy the MSI gaming R9 270 for $179.99, But right before I bought it they raised the price to $189.99 LOL, So instead I got the HIS model R9 270 for $179.99, I also liked the way the HIS looked. And it is a smaller length making it a better fit for airflow. The only reason I was going to get the MSI was because my motherboard is a MSI, And my older 650 Ti (Now my Physx Card) is a MSI. So I trusted there products. But I like my HIS GPU, So far So good.

      • Brian Blair

        Then again I forgot you can use afterburner with any GPU so yeah they could have ran it at the same speeds instead of pretending they could only use CCC with the Saphire. So in a way you are right. Ok you are 100% right it is fake!

  • Nerdrage

    Great review. Sapphire need to offer more if they want to better.