Radeon R9 290X 

Released October, 2013
  • 1 GHz
  • 4 GB GDDR5
8.2 Out of 10

With a price of $700 in the US, the card comes at the same price as other custom design R9 290Xs, but is still fairly expensive, especially since you can find the GTX 780 Ti, which is faster and quieter, at a similar price.
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It comes with a large triple-slot, triple-fan cooler and MSI says it to be equipped with everything hardcore overclockers need to break world records.
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GPUBoss Review Our evaluation of the Radeon R9 290X among GPUs between $200 and $400

Gaming

Radeon R9 290X
8.1
Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Bioshock Infinite and 21 more

Graphics

Radeon R9 290X
9.7
T-Rex, Manhattan, Sky Diver Factor and Fire Strike Factor

Computing

Radeon R9 290X
8.4
Face Detection, Ocean Surface Simulation and 3 more

Performance per Watt

Radeon R9 290X
5.9
Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Bioshock Infinite and 31 more

Value

Radeon R9 290X
7.2
Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4, Bioshock Infinite and 31 more

Noise and Power

Radeon R9 290X
5.0
TDP, Idle Power Consumption, Load Power Consumption and 2 more

8.2

Overall Score

Radeon R9 290X
8.2

Benchmarks Real world tests of the Radeon R9 290X

Bitcoin mining Data courtesy CompuBench

Radeon R9 290X
625.33 mHash/s
GeForce GTX 970
476.85 mHash/s
Radeon RX 480
600.24 mHash/s

Face detection Data courtesy CompuBench

Radeon R9 290X
113.61 mPixels/s
GeForce GTX 970
100.58 mPixels/s
Radeon RX 480
120.11 mPixels/s

Ocean surface simulation Data courtesy CompuBench

Radeon R9 290X
2,350.11 frames/s
GeForce GTX 970
1,195.72 frames/s
Radeon RX 480
2,128.99 frames/s

Fire Strike Factor Data courtesy FutureMark

Radeon R9 290X
73.87

Sky Diver Factor Data courtesy FutureMark

Radeon R9 290X
435.77

Cloud Gate Factor Data courtesy FutureMark

Radeon R9 290X
21.89

Thief

Radeon R9 290X
64

Battlefield 4

Radeon R9 290X
68.75

Reviews Word on the street for the Radeon R9 290X


9.2
Please note that we are discussing 2560x1600 here because it is the absolute minimum resolution you should use for 290X CrossFire.

What People Are Saying Give it to me straight

Performance

AMD's Radeon R9 290X is built on the company's Hawaii GPU, the first truly new high-end graphics chip from the company in a very long time (21 months).
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AMD's Radeon R9 290X is built on the company's new Hawaii GPU, the first truly new high-end graphics chip from the company in a very long time (21 months).
by techPowerUp!
AMD's Radeon R9 290X is built on the company's new Hawaii GPU, which is the first truly new high-end graphics chip from the company in a very long time (21 months).
by techPowerUp!

Applications

Gaming noise levels are greatly improved over the reference design and result in very enjoyable acoustics similar to those produced by the GTX 780 or Titan.
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If you look at our selection of games, you can see that depending on the game, either NVIDIA or AMD have the upper hand.
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During gaming, the card is also much quieter than the very noisy AMD reference design, but the card is still too noisy.
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Gaming

Overall, temperatures are very good, especially during gaming, where the card is also pretty quiet.
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MSI's Gaming series usually comes with amazing noise levels, but this isn't the case with the 290X Gaming.
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I would describe gaming noise as acceptable, but still clearly audible, far from the quiet experience we've seen on some custom designs from other manufacturers.
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Memory

The main GPU heatsink also cools four memory chips near the GPU.
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Elpida memory holds back memory OC.
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Memory overclocks are also higher than on cards that use Elpida memory, wince Sapphire's card uses Hynix chips.
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Power

Furmark maximum power is high, but that is also a positive as it shows that MSI has increased the card's power limit to use of the extra power delivery capability and stronger VRM to best effect.
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Furmark maximum power is well below the 375 W that the PCIe power input configuration is specified for, but I saw short sub-second spikes above 400 W right as Furmark was started.
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The card sips a lot of power with something as simple as decoding a video, a task comparable NVIDIA cards can handle with just 20 W. Only our Furmark maximum power draw tests show no increase, which suggests that Sapphire has configured their card's power limit to a similar value as the reference design.
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Specifications Full list of technical specs

gpu

GPU brand AMD
GPU name Hawaii
Market Desktop
Clock speed 1,000 MHz
Turbo clock speed 1,000 MHz
Is dual GPU No
Reference card None

raw performance

Shading units 2,816
Texture mapping units 176
Render output processors 64
Compute units 44
Pixel rate 64 GPixel/s
Texture rate 176 GTexel/s
Floating-point performance 5,632 GFLOPS

memory

Memory clock speed 1,250 MHz
Effective memory clock speed 5,000 MHz
Memory bus 512 bit
Memory 4,096 MB
Memory type GDDR5
Memory bandwidth 320 GB/s

noise and power

TDP 300W
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Comments

Showing 4 comments.
I recommend this very card, I haven't had any problems with it, though it does run a little hot, it reaches up 94C sometimes. I can run most games max settings at 60 fps, even witcher with nvidia hairworks turned on, though with 8 anti aliasing forhairrworks I get around 45 fps. It's great, though a GTX 970 might be a better choice, but if you can find this for way cheaper than a 970 like I did, than absolutely get it
I'm probably going to get one of these for my HTPC/steambox.
Good catch, thanks for pointing this out. Just corrected this.
I believe dual GPU is a typo... all the evidence points to a single GPU card including pictures.
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