In the sea of Raytracing and Deep Learning Super Sampling, it’s easy to get lost. I am of course referring to numerous video cards by NVIDIA. In the past few years, we had a lot of rumors, facts, and promises of all that is great when it comes to the incredible graphics and gaming. With the recent RTX line from NVIDIA, we are slowly starting to see an increase in gaming titles that support DLSS and Raytracing. I say it’s about time. RTX Super line consists of overhauled and tuned versions of RTX 2060, 2070, and 2080 card. On the bench, I will be taking a look at MSI GeForce RTX 2080 SUPER Gaming X Trio card which judging by the specs is nothing more than amazing. We have seen 2080 cards in the past so I wonder how different/tuned this card is as opposed to RTX 2080 and if the value is worth the price.
|Model Name||GeForce® RTX 2080 SUPER™ GAMING X TRIO|
|Graphics Processing Unit||NVIDIA® GeForce® RTX 2080 SUPER™|
|Interface||PCI Express x16 3.0|
|Core Clocks||Boost: 1845 MHz|
|Memory Speed||15.5 Gbps|
|Output||DisplayPort x 3 (v1.4) / HDMI 2.0b x 1 / Type-C x1|
|Power Consumption||250 W|
|Power Connectors||8-pin x 2|
|Recommended PSU (W)||650 W|
|Card Dimensions (mm)||328 x 140 x 56.5 mm|
|Weight (Card / Package)||1531 g / 2345 g|
|DirectX Version Support||12 API|
|OpenGL Version Support||4.5|
|Multi-GPU Technology||NVIDIA® NVLINK™ (SLI-Ready), 2-way|
|Adaptive Vertical Sync||Y|
|Digital Maximum Resolution||7680 x 4320|
MSI GeForce 2080 SUPER Gaming X Trio packaging and the physical appearance of the card is identical to MSI GeForce 2080 Gaming X Trio. The only noticeable difference in the packaging is the stats sheet on the back and “super” logo on the front of the package near 2080.
MSI includes everything you need to get started with his product. You will find an instructional manual, a welcome packet with miscellaneous promo and information and a simple thank you card which encourages you to register your 2080 Super card. To help with the weight of this card MSI includes a GPU support bracket.
A Closer Look
MSI’s 2080 Super Gaming X Trio sure is impressive in size and weight. Entire card dimensions are 328 x 140 x 56.5 mm and it weighs about 1500G. Entire fan mount is made from ABS plastic which looks great in my opinion. MSI is using TORX 2.0 fans which are specially designed to provide maximum airflow by having two different fin designs and keep quiet operation with double ball bearings. The backplate is made from aluminum and has a stylish brushed aluminum finish.
There are a few places like on the backplate and fans where MSI Dragon logos could be found. There is a total of seven heat pipes which run through the GPU block. The radiator is very well designed to be semi-exposed outside of the card. The far end of the card has an open slot design to help with cooling this card.
The card has two eight-pin connectors on the right as MSI suggests its power consumption of 250 watts. The minimum power supply recommendation to run with this card is 650 watts. Every manufacturer nowadays has some kind of RGB solution and MSI is part of that crowd. MSI RGB solution is called RGB Mystic Light. RGB LEDs which are mounted on top of the fan mount and are controlled by MSI Mystic Light 3 software.
Most of the weight is contributed to this card is by the heat sink. Not only does it provide cooling to GPU but also the VRMs, chokes, controllers and other onboard chips. According to MSI, this board was completely redesigned to provide extended and stable power to the GPU.
GPU heat sink is made from nickel and the actual GPU block has a highly reflective surface for better contact with the GPU. The fins of the heat sink are made from nickel as well and so are the heat pipes. Components which are on the right side of the board like VRMs and chokes are being cooled by a nickel plate which is not attached to heat pipes.
GPU on this board is based on the TU104 (Turing) chip. This chip has 3072 shader cores which is an increase from 2080 Gaming X Trio that has 2944. MSI GeForce 2080 Super Gaming X Trio comes with a higher factory overclocked clock rate of 1845MHz. Keep in mind that the base frequency for this card is 1640MHz.
MSI’s 2080 Super Gaming X Trio uses 10+2 power phase design with Mouser FDMD3160 voltage regulators.
There are 8 x 1GB GDDR6 chips onboard which are produced by Samsung and the model number is K4Z80325BC-HC16. This particular RAM chip operates at 15.5 Gbps, in 2080 Super however actual manufactures specs reference 16.0 Gbps.
« Introduction and Specifications | Test System and Synthetic Benchmarks »« A Closer Look at MSI GeForce RTX 2080 SUPER Gaming X TRIO | Gaming Benchmarks »
Test System and Synthetic Benchmarks
|Case||Open Test Table|
|CPU||Intel Core i7 8700K|
|Motherboard||Gigabyte AORUS Z370 ULTRA GAMING|
|Ram||(2) 8GB Corsair DDR4-3200 CMW16GX4M2C3200C16|
|GPU||MSI GeForce® RTX 2080 SUPER™ GAMING X TRIO|
|Hard Drives||Corsair Force MP510 NVMe Gen 3 x4 M.2 SSD (480Gb)|
|Power Supply||Thermal Take Tough Power RGB 80 Plus Gold 750W|
There are many ways to benchmark GPUs. With these benchmarks our goal is to do two things: first to show the performance of the card and secondly to make them easy to replicate. With a similarly configured system, you should be able to get similar results to compare your current graphic card against. There will always be a variance from system to system.
3DMark Firestrike from Futuremark is a Semi-synthetic DirectX11 benchmark designed for high-performance gaming PCs. Firestrike performs advanced geometry, illumination and particle tests with its Graphics benchmark and performs physics simulations using the CPU. Firestrike Ultra Kicks it up a notch and ratchets up the resolution to 4K and turns the quality up a bit.
Timespy is an additional test in 3DMark which represents DirectX 12 gameplay. The extreme version is meant to test the highest-end graphics cards at 4K.
Unigine’s Superposition features both a monitor benchmark but also a VR load as well. I used the 4K optimized and 8K optimized presets. Superposition also allows you to explore the environment in VR Mode with your headset connected.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider is an action-adventure video game developed by Eidos Montréal in conjunction with Crystal Dynamics and published by Square Enix. It continues the narrative from the 2013 game Tomb Raider and its sequel Rise of the Tomb Raider.
Witcher 3 closes the chapter on Geralt’s life. The game features a massive open world that the player can explore. Witcher 3 uses REDEngine developed independently by CD Projekt RED. The game engine features stunning visuals.
Middle Earth: Shadow of War is an action RPG game based on the novels of J. R. R. Tolkien. It’s the sequel to Monolith’s successful Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor game and the events of the game take place after The Hobbit but before the Lord of the Rings. The game builds upon the nemesis system that made the first game such a surprise hit, and it’s just brutal to PC hardware.
Far Cry 5 is an action-adventure first-person shooter video game developed by Ubisoft Montreal and Ubisoft Toronto and published by Ubisoft for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. It is the successor to the 2014 video game Far Cry 4, and the fifth main installment in the Far Cry series. The game was released on March 27, 2018.
Gaming Benchmarks Continued
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands is a tactical shooter game set in an open world environment and played from a third-person perspective with an optional first-person view for gun aiming. Players play as members of the Delta Company, First Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group, also known as “Ghosts”, a fictional elite special operations unit of the United States Army under the Joint Special Operations Command. The game can be played as a single-player experience or you can invite up to 3 of your friends to fill out your squad.
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided is an action role-playing game with first-person shooter and stealth mechanics. Players take the role of Adam Jensen, a man equipped with mechanical cybernetic implants called augmentations.
Battlefield V is a first-person shooter video game developed by EA DICE and published by Electronic Arts. Battlefield V is the sixteenth installment in the Battlefield series. Battlefield V features a limited single-player campaign in the form of War Stories, the rest of the missions and adventures are online multiplayer. For this specific test, I did not have DXR turned on.
Raytracing & DLSS Testing
For the Ray Tracing and DLSS, I am going to be using Battlefield V and Final Fantasy XV for reference. For the DXR testing in Battlefield V, I chose to use 1440p as the resolution and the base graphics settings to Ultra. DXR was also set to Ultra. The point of these benchmarks is to see the results of Ultra settings and if the card can handle it and how well.
Final Fantasy XV is another game that supports DLSS. DLSS leverages Nvidia’s Tensor cores on the RTX 20 series cards. It works by basically rendering at a lower target resolution then, sends the frame to the Tensor Cores and the Deep Learning network to get upscaled and the “AI” fills in the information for the anti-aliasing. DLSS is only available in 4K on Final Fantasy. For this test, I chose to run the beginning missions around Hammerhead and occasionally heading back to the gas station.
Overclocking, Noise, and Temperatures
My choice for overclocking utility is MSI Afterburner. What I like about this utility is that you can push your hardware as much as you want without damaging it. The application layer of the software will freeze and disable overloaded values before they affect your hardware.
MSI Afterburner has an OC Scanner feature that scans your hardware and based on the configuration of the components adjusts power and clock. The OC Scan ran fine and adjusted the card settings.
MSI RTX 2080 SUPER Gaming X TRIO is already factory overclocked to 1845MHz from 1650MHz (reference card) so you are already getting an OC features right out of the box. With MSI Afterburner was I was able to hit 1955MHz and have a stable system.
To validate setting I have used FurkMark benchmark with 1440p resolution to perform a GPU Test.
Memory overclocking was done by MSI Afterburner as well. I was able to increase the memory clock by 80MHz and have a stable system. This brought Memory speed to 15.662 Gbps from 15.5 Gbps.
While benchmarking with FurMark the temperatures of the GPU stayed around 56 C and never reached 65C. Note (While in benchmarking mode, fans speed was set to 100%).
Noise testing were done by TDJ 834 (30-130dB) sound tester. The tester was mounted on the tripod and measurements were recorded in following conditions of the fans (Under 10%, 50%, and 100%)
Minimum sound level I got from the entire system was 47dB and maximum 66dB. The recording was done 20 cm away from the GPU.
Running Furmark 4k benchmark outside temperature of the rear heatsink reached 64.1 C and actual GPU temperature was stable at 65 C.
Conclusion and Final Thoughts
If you are looking for that one best card to buy for today, tomorrow and perhaps for the future then you are probably looking at RTX 2080 Super cards. In all fairness RTX 2080 cards are amazing but if you are looking for the best of the RTX series then you should consider MSI 2080 Super Gaming X Trio. This card is faster than the reference card and stays at 65C in most games.
GPU overclocking this card was fair as I was able to push the clock speeds a little further than what the factory overclock already has done. RAM overclocking didn’t get me too far as I was only able to push an additional 80MHz. But let’s face it, do you really need to push something to the limit that is already on the bleeding edge?
Cooling of the card was done by Torx Fans 3.0 system. These three fans have a unique blade design system which produces the best airflow possible. Torx fans based on the double ball bearings which keep the noise of the fan to a bare minimum. The GPU runs fairly cool and quiet during operation.
Currently, MSI RTX 2080 Super Gaming X Trio 8GB is being sold for about $760 and MSI RTX 2080 Gaming X Trio is being sold for $705. So, the big question here, is there price difference of $55 justifies the new “Super” card? In my opinion, YES. When you’re playing at the high end of the spectrum, for $ 55 more you can get a cooler, quieter and faster card. To me, it is a no brainer. You are already looking for a $ 700 range card so why not spend a little more and get the best “Super” can offer.
If you are looking for a higher tier of Super cards this is the one you want. Buy it and take advantage of DLSS and DXR as it was meant to be used. The MSI 2080 Super Gaming X Trio is truly a beast of a card in the 2080 Super line up.