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AMD Radeon R9 380X Review: The Full Tonga

The new Radeon R9 380X fills up the spot between the R9 380 and the R9 390X. Featuring a full unlocked “Tonga” GCN 1.2 architecture, the R9 380X (officially “Antigua”) is designed to hit the over $199 but under $299 sweet spot to go against NVIDIA’s GTX 960. Like other 300 series video cards, the R9 380X uses GDDR5 memory instead of HBM (which is currently reserved for the high-end R9 Fury parts), 4GB of it in fact running at 5.7Gbps with a stock core clock of 970MHz. This is powered with a pair of 6-pin power aside from the power draw directly from the PCI-E slot.  Most of the features remain the same as the other 300 series as this is just a reconfiguration of the architecture everybody has been familiar with so it is not a thoroughly exciting card on that regard. What this card is for however, is for AMD to maximize the existing Tonga parts (initially seen in the R9 285, you can read my review of the PowerColor version here for comparison: http://www.modders-inc.com/powercolor-r9-285-2gb-turbo-duo-review/) for optimal 1440p performance.

380XBlock

Radeon  R9 Fury X R9 Nano R9 390X R9 380X R9 370
Fabrication Process 28nm 28nm 28nm 28nm 28nm
GPU Fiji Fiji Hawaii / Grenada Antigua Tobago
Streaming Processors 4096 4096 2816 2048 1024
Graphics memory 4 GB HBM 4 GB HBM 8 GB GDDR5 4GB GDDR5 2/4GB GDDR5
Memory Clock up-to 500 MHz / 1.0 Gbps up-to 500 MHz / 1.0 Gbps 6.0 Gbps 5.7 Gbps 5.6 Gbps
Core Clock 1050 MHz up-to 1000 MHz 1050 MHz 970 MHz 975 MHz
Memory Bandwidth up-to 512 GB/s up-to 512 GB/s 384 GB/s 182 GB/s 179 GB/s
Power Connectors 2 x 8-pin 1 x 8-pin 1 x 6-pin – 1 x 8-pin 2 x 6-pin 1 x 6-pin
Form Factor Dual slot Dual slot Dual slot Dual slot Dual slot
Freesync  Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
DirectX 12 Support  Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Radeon AIB partners had free reign to customize on launch day with some opting for beefier VRM and pretty much all of them opting for superior twin-fan, multi-heatpipe cooling versus the reference 80mm blower style design that exhaust to the rear. Power envelope is at 190W but as with other 300-series video cards, there is always room for further overclocks on top of what manufacturers already clock beyond stock out of the box. Below are the current available R9 380X releases on launch day. MSI and Gigabyte R9 380X video cards are not listed yet on their website as of 12:00PM EST of November 19th but leaked images of those cards showed up last week so they will eventually turn up.

Manufacturer Product Name Core Clock (MHz)
Memory Clock (MHz)
Cooling
Price (USD)
AMD Stock R9 380X 970 1425 1x fan (rear exhaust blower) 229
ASUS
R9 380X Strix 1010 (OC Mode) 1425 2x fan, 2x 10mm heatpipe 239
Gigabyte
MSI
PowerColor R9 380X 1020 1475 2x fan, 3x heatpipes 239
Sapphire R9 380X 1 1500 2x fan, 4x heatpipes 239
XFX R9 380X XXX OC 990 1425 2x fan, 4x heatpipes
XFX R9 380X DD Black Edition OC 1030 1450 2x fan, 4x heatpipes

Review Round-up:

ASUS STRIX Radeon R9 380X

 

Sapphire Radeon R9 380X Nitro

 

PowerColor PCS+ R9 380X Myst

 

XFX DD R9 380X

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Ron Perillo

Ron is a non-binary tech writer that presently identifies as a reviewer but is currently transitioning toward modding.
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