Another day and another AMD R9 280X review. Today we’ve got another custom cooled and overclocked graphics card but this time we’ve got a graphics card vendor that we haven’t taken a look at for ages – HIS Digital. This is the first HIS Digital graphics card I’ve ever looked at some I am quite excited to see what it can offer. Despite the fact this is an AMD R9 280X we won’t recap all the monotonous information about the R9 280X GPU that you’ve probably already heard a million times by now, if you want to read more about the R9 280X you can do so here. We want to focus specifically on this HIS card which is the “HIS R9 280X iPower IceQ X² Turbo Boost” – yes quite a mouthful.
Firstly let’s quickly break down that really long name into what it all means. “iPower” is HIS’ way of saying an improved VRM and power delivery system. This graphics card has a 9 phase VRM, versus 8 phases on the reference design, uses DirectFET MOSFETs compared to your bog standard MOSFETs on the reference design and it has a pair of 8 pins instead of the 6+8 pin reference design meaning there is more power to be delivered to the GPU. Secondly, the “IceQ X²” part means this is using HIS’ IceQ X² cooling solution that features a pair of 89mm fans, two 8mm heat pipes and three 6mm heat pipes. That’s all encased in a large aluminium shroud which features the IceQ X² and Turbo branding on it. Thirdly and finally the “Turbo Boost” part is predictably an overclock. AMD’s reference R9 280X comes with a 850MHz core and 1000MHz boost, aka “up to 1GHz” while the HIS version comes with a 1000MHz core clock and 1050MHz boost clock. You can see those clocks below, the core is up 5% on reference and the memory is identical to reference.
The packaging comes with HIS’ usual frost/ice theme and a tonne of marketing stuff. Included with our sample was just a CrossFire X bridge and DVI-I to VGA adapter but we are informed the retail version also comes with an install CD, multilingual user guide, quick installation guide and HIS Power Up label.
The back of the box has more of those key features but we recommend checking out the product page if you’re interested in knowing more.