Video Cards

SAPPHIRE NITRO+ Radeon RX 480 video card review

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A Closer Look at the SAPPHIRE NITRO+ Radeon RX 480

Size wise, the Nitro+ RX 480 is a lot smaller than some of the other GPUs that I’ve reviewed recently and measures in at 12.8x5x1.7 (in). Two Sapphire Dual-X 95mm fans are used to help keep the temperature under control.

While the official specifications say the card occupies 2 slots, at 1.7 inches tall, it is more like a slot and a half. With most a few motherboard manufactures giving extra clearance between the first two PCIe slots, airflow will be less of an issue with the Nitro+ Radeon RX 480. The heatsink features 10mm heatpipes which connect the cold plate of the cooler to the fins. The fins are covered by the fan shroud and very little of the fins are exposed. Overall, a very clean look for this card.


Connectivity features one DVI-D, two display port, and two HDMI ports.

The rear portion of the heatsink is the only part that is really exposed and outside of the shroud. A single 8-pin power connector is used to to power the Nitro+ RX 480.


An aluminum backplate is present on the back. The back plate provides rigidity for the card as well as helps aid in cooling of the card.  The slots in the edge of the back plate are designed to help exhaust hot air and are part of what Sapphire calls NITRO Free Flow.


On the corner of the back plate there is the LED mode button as well as the v BIOS switch. The LED mode button allows you to change the color of the LED lit Sapphire logo on the leading edge of the card. You can choose one of six modes that include cycling through the RGB LED colors and temperature monitoring. The v BIOS switch allows you to choose the BIOS on the card. Much like Sapphire’s Fury, each BIOS is tuned for different fan and power profiles.


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Tom Brokaw

Tom is a network and computer hardware enthusiast. He has been reviewing hardware products around for various sites around the net since 1999. He has modded a few cases back in the day, such as cutting a side window or two.


  1. Under ‘Test System’ and ‘Conclusion’ section of this review, you mention using the GTX 1060 for comparison. The test result graphics display GTX 960.

  2. Thanks for pointing that out. The charts have been updated to show the proper name of the cards that were tested. -Tom

  3. AMD RX 470 with 4GB can run most games at 1080p 60fps, and it only costs $200.

    RX 470 is a much better value than RX 480 or GTX 1060.

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