MSI GeForce GTX 960 GAMING 4G Video Card Review
Today we are examining the MSI GeForce GTX 960 GAMING 4G model, which features a custom build from MSI with the Twin Frozr V thermal design. We will compare the MSI GTX 960 4G to the XFX R9 380 4G, including the highest obtained overclock. Additionally we will examine the GTX 960 2GB and 4GB models clock-for-clock.
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 P8Z77 WS motherboard. For the CPU we used an Intel i7 3770k overclocked to 4.6GHz with Hyper-threading enabled. The RAM is Corsair Dominator 16GB at 1600MHz. We are running the Windows 8.1 operating system on a 240GB Kingston HyperX SSD.
For the MSI GeForce GTX 960 GAMING 4G we are using GeForce 353.30 WHQL dated 6/22/2015. All data was recorded before the GeForce 353.62 driver was released on 7/29/2015 which adds support for Windows 10. This new driver does not improve performance in Windows 8.1 at all and thus would not change the performance of the NVIDIA video cards in this review.
For the XFX R9 380 Double Dissipation 4G we are using Catalyst 15.7 dated 7/8/2015. The Catalyst 15.7.1 driver was released on 7/29/2015 which includes support for Windows 10 but does not increase performance in Windows 8.1. It will provide the same results as the Catalyst 15.7 driver.
The video cards we are using are as such:
Max OC MSI GeForce GTX 960 GAMING 4G – 1366 MHz core / 1429 MHz boost / 7.8 GHz memory
MSI GeForce GTX 960 GAMING 4G – 1216 MHz core / 1279 MHz boost / 7 GHz memory
XFX R9 380 Double Dissipation 4G – 990 MHz core / 5.7 GHz memory
Below is a screenshot of GPU-z after installing the MSI GeForce GTX 960 GAMING 4G with the GeForce 353.30 driver.