Most gamers today still overwhelmingly game on single monitor systems, whether that be at a resolution of 1920 x 1080 (FHD) or 2560 x 1440 (WQHD) – the two most popular “high end” gaming resolutions. Of course gamers using 1080p displays are still the most common but both 5760 x 1080 and 2560 x 1440 are gaining more traction with gamers as “only” 1080p starts to become dated (and is often put to shame but high resolution tablets and ultrabooks). 2560 x 1440 is growing in popularity a lot thanks to the affordability of the South Korean WQHD panels and the fact 1440p panels use the same aspect ratio (16:9) as 1080p panels, so are a “direct” upgrade. It just makes sense that most gamers will choose 1440p panels as their next upgrades instead of WXQHD (2560 x 1600) displays which never really took off, just like its predecessor WUXGA (1920 x 1200) didn’t, maybe due to the less popular 16:10 aspect ratio. What relevance does this have to today’s review you may be thinking? Well today we have a GPU that aims to hit the sweet spot of performance and pricing for 2560 x 1440 and 5760 x 1080 gaming resolutions. We’ve managed to get Club3D’s R9 280X royalKing 3GB graphics card in for review. Club 3D’s R9 280X royalKing is based on AMD’s $299 3GB R9 280X GPU, which is essentially a rebranded HD 7970. Offering a hefty amount of GPU horsepower and 3GB of frame buffer it is designed for “more-than-1080p” gaming.
Club 3D’s R9 280X royalKing offers up a 10% core overclock compared to the stock AMD R9 280X design, meaning 1100MHz instead of 1000MHz while, memory retains the stock 6GHz clock speed but the main talking point is of course the core overclock. There is always a danger with the R9 280X that if AMD vendors do not implement proper cooling solutions the noise and temperatures can easily get out of hand, especially when you start adding factory overclocks. Club3D will be hoping to tame both the noise and temperatures with their popular “CoolStream” cooling solution, something that will be necessary with a 10% overclock added to an already hot-running GPU.
The packaging of Club3D’s R9 280X royalKing is quick to point out the CoolStream cooling solution and support for Eyefinity 6 which now only requires a single MST hub thanks to AMD’s recent modifications to the way it’s Eyefinity technology works.
The back of the box details more about the key features of the product, you can see more of those on the product page right here.
Included with the graphics card is a driver CD, quick installation guide and CrossFire cable. Club3D are not messing around with any power supply adapters so make sure you’ve got an 8 pin and 6 pin for this graphics card on your PSU. They also do not include any overclock software on the CD itself but you can download Club3D’s royalFlush GPU overclocking utility from their website here.