ASUS Radeon R9 290 DirectCU II OC Video Card Review

On our test bench today is a factory overclocked Radeon R9 290 from ASUS sporting the DirectCU II cooling system. We will compare it to the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 to determine which card reins supreme. AMD prices have finally stabilized back to normal, and this pushes one card into an extreme disadvantage from the other.

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Evaluation Method

We evaluate what each video card configuration can supply us in terms of a playable gaming experience while supplying the best culmination of resolution and "eye candy" graphical settings. We focus on quality and immersion of the gameplay experience rather than how many frames per second the card can get in a canned benchmark or prerecorded timedemo situation that often do not represent real gameplay like you would experience at home. Then we will follow with apples-to-apples testing in with minimum, maximum, and average framerates.

Test System Setup

We will be using a ASUS Sabertooth Z77 motherboard, an Intel Core i7 3770K Overclocked at 4.6GHz, and 8GB of Corsair RAM.

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We will compare the ASUS Radeon R9 290 DirectCU II OC to a reference NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780.

Drivers

For the ASUS Radeon R9 290 DirectCU II OC we are using the Catalyst 14.4 WHQL Drivers. For testing purposes, we are using the "performance mode" on the ASUS Radeon R9 290 DirectCU II OC.

For the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 we are using the ForceWare 337.50 beta driver.

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