Company Advanced Micro Devices today is playing catch-up from two directions – the CPU and GPU, although, as they say, “for two hares chase”… However, it is not only not surrender, but continues in difficult conditions to increase production and to announce new products.
In the summer of 2016, long-awaited release of AMD graphics Polaris 10/11, the first step of the company in the transition to 14 nm process technology and new opportunities. Model Radeon RX 460, 470 and RX RX 480 built around them were a major driving force for manufacturer’s in the lower and middle price segment, but top-class initiative was again intercepted by the Californian company Nvidia.
It remains only to wait for the first quarter of next year and the long-awaited announcement of the senior graphics solutions AMD. Meanwhile, the market was filled with video cards based on GPU Polaris 10.
Gigabyte needs no introduction – it is known worldwide as one of the developers of computer equipment within the top three manufacturers of motherboards and graphics cards. Two years ago, was presented the company line G1 Gaming, bringing together models of different categories, which allowed users to collect configuration on the basis of one series harmonized in design and functionality.
Developers gave Gigabyte Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G VRAM, what the current reality looks good and saves you a few thousand at purchase. And for gamers, do not accept compromise, released the top version, carrying on Board 8 GB memory.
Judging by the performance, Gigabyte has a good balance between noise and heat, as well as opportunities for further fine-tuning, RGB backlight, factory overclocking and an extended three-year warranty. Looks interesting, should we consider it in more detail.
Full name: Gigabyte Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G manufacturer code: GV-RX480G1 Gaming-4GD.
The hero comes in a small package with a glossy finish and black printing. On the box, given the modest image of a proprietary cybernetic eye, a manufacturer name, line and series, as well as a scattering of logos.
Thanks to the latter we can know that the product is equipped with a video memory of 4 GB and got the original cooling system WindForce with factory overclocking and RGB backlight Spectrum.
Unlike the popular TV and pop stars, engineers do not hide the detailed characteristics and design features of the Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G.
The novelty has received two fans with a diameter of 90 mm with a modified impeller, heatsink with three heat pipes and direct contact, “backplate” on the back side of the PCB. The company says about the use of technology GPU Gauntlet of selection, involving the application of the best graphics processors in their graphics cards, and specialty lighting.
In the lower section of the package to find a schematic image of the panel outputs, and minimum system requirements. The power supply should have a capacity at least 500 W and supplied with one eight-pin connector.
Under the fragile and colorful packaging hides a box of cardboard with the name of the G1 Gaming line.
And without that not the small box is half occupied with a soft material that protects the card from damage during transportation. Additionally, it is placed in anti-static bag, and all the connectors and the black connectors are closed with plugs.
It is not surprising that the delivery has nowhere to stay: it is small and has just a couple of points. CD with drivers and user manual – everything that can find a user after purchase of this card.
In the design of the Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G is dominated by a rich black that accentuates the appearance of several orange stripes. The product is made in a compact form-factor and stands out from a whole family of models, equipped with three fans that we are so used to seeing on Gigabyte.
In this case we used an original cooling system WindForce dual fan size 90 mm, for rotors which caused the brand manufacturer. Plastic cover received multiple geometric kinks to make a model of aspiration into the distance as a reminder of her class.
On the reverse side we see the monolithic support plate. “Backplate” deprived of the cuts that will impede the exit of hot air from the printed circuit Board and increase it to heat up. The photo below allows you to estimate the size of the cooling system extending beyond the PCB edge.
Side panel-side power connector got a customizable RGB backlight, which in the default mode shimmers in different colors.
We should also mention the area that says “Fan Stop”, the name of which implies that with no load the fans stop and the signal will serve as the indication.
Rear panel repeats the reference version of AMD Radeon RX 480 – b single HDMI 2.0 and three DisplayPort 1.4. In addition, the developers have added so lacking in many users the video output DVI-D, but to connect an analog monitor, even via an adapter will fail: all the interfaces are translated to the digital part.
Despite the longitudinal position of the fins and the hot air outlet via the back panel, there is only a small number of slots.
The following resolutions are supported:
Supplementary feeding is implemented with a single eight-pin connector, which along with a PCI-Express slot provides Gigabyte Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G up to 225 watts of power. This not only removes the restriction on further acceleration, but leads to the disappearance of fears over possible damage to the motherboard. However, the latter is true for owners of the reference version, where consumption grew with acceleration, and no ability to cover it was not.
For convenience, the developers have deployed the connector latch up, and in the base plate and the PCB made the appropriate cutouts.
It is worth saying a few words about the size of new. They are quite democratic: it has a total length of 233 mm, which is a modest value among “preferences”, and the width is 116 mm. In the system unit video card will block two expansion slots.
Apparently, due to the small dimensions of the model Gigabyte want to convince us low consumption.
Cooling system WindForce video card Gigabyte Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G is built on the classic principle, any surprises here.
For removing the cooler you must remove the four screws in the field of graphic processor and two in the VRM area. From the casing are drawn three wiring from fans and zones of lighting.
At the base of the technology of direct contact when the GPU is in direct contact with heat pipes. However, due to the plates to test flatness using a metal ruler impossible. The very Foundation treated well, the heat pipes protrude slightly and almost completely cover the graphics processor.
For heat dissipation from the video memory chips meets the bolted metal plate. She interacts with them through the delicate pads grey color with a thickness of 0.5 mm.
Cooling of the power subsystem vGPU organized in a similar way, except that the thermal interface plate and markedly increased in thickness. Uniform pressing, during tests overheating of the power unit were noted: more accurate measurement results are given in the section “Research capacity of the cooling system”.
The cooler is a radiator-section of a simple form, scored 37 aluminum Nickel-plated plates. They are laced with three heat pipes 6 mm in diameter each. Connections carefully soldered.
The thickness of the ribs in the Central part is on average 15-16 mm.
Together with the plastic cover removed, a couple of fans. Under the hull is a cable management without any special tricks. Here illustrates the zone highlights: each of them has an independent control and power supply.
The active cooling answer two fans with blade diameter of 87 mm the production of Power Logic. We have a model PLD09210S12HH characteristics 0.4 A and 12 V. the Speed of rotation is 0-3400 rpm.
Devices remain very quiet up to 1400 rpm and quiet up to 1800 rpm is a Good indicator of the ratio of the momentum and of noise.
The last element in the cooling system is “baklad”. It not only protects the card from bending, but also removes heat from the CPU VRM area using a thick pad. However, due to the lack of slots in the plate hot air is more difficult to leave the void and the convection process is slowed down.
Gigabyte Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G is built on the original black PCB with a glossy sheen. Use one of the types of key elements location at which the power subsystem is shifted to the interface panel. The graphics card supports CrossFireX technology and allows you to install up to four graphics accelerators in a single tandem.
On the reverse side applied dense SMD elements.
The power subsystem is built according to the scheme “6+2”, where six phases allocated to the GPU and two for memory.
As the PWM controller is a chip IR 3567B that support the I2C Protocol and a large number of energy saving features.
The heart of a hero review is the GPU Ellesmere (Polaris 10) produced on the 14 nm process at the 34th week of 2016. It includes 2304 Shader, 32 ROPS and 144 texture units.
Video card is equipped with four gigabytes of graphics memory, which recruited eight SKhynix chip production marked H5GC4H24AJR.
Clock frequency of the memory chips is 1500 MHz, but they are overclocked by the manufacturer to 1750 MHz (effective frequency – 7000 MHz).
Test video card Gigabyte Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G took place in the following configurations:
For overclocking graphics cards, as well as monitoring temperatures and fan speed were used proprietary utility MSI Afterburner v4.3.0.
Check the stability of the accelerators in the process of dispersal was carried out by the utility 18.104.22.168 MSI Kombustor (GPU Burn-in, 1920 x 1080). The received frequency was further tested by the runs test Heaven Benchmark 4.0 c v extreme levels of tessellation and GPU tests from 3DMark 2013 packages.
To check the temperature of GPU in conditions close to daily, I used Heaven BenchMark v4.0 (quality: ultra, tessellation: extreme, AA8x, 1920 x 1080) and 3DMark 2013 Fire Strike.
The noise level was measured using a digital sound level meter TM-102 with a measurement error no more than 0.5 dBA. The measurements were carried out with a distance of 0.3 m. the Level of background noise in the room – no more than 28 dBA. All system fans including installed in the power supply was turned off. On the charts of the conventional low noise for the system is defined at the level of 30.5 dBA, the conventional comfort – 37 dBA. The temperature of the air in the room was 25 degrees Celsius.
Additionally starred readings of power consumption using the power meter Robiton PM-2 and the temperature of the PCB infrared thermometer Fluke 59 MAX.
As already mentioned, Gigabyte Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G has received not only an alternative cooling system and the original PCB, but factory overclocking. The graphics core frequency has been increased from 1120 MHz to 1144 MHz, in Boost mode – s 1266 MHz to 1290 MHz at a voltage of 1.175 V. the Value of ASIC – 75.9%.
When idle the fans are stopped, the key value for the start is at 48°C. In this mode, we obtained the following results:
It should be noted that the start of the turntables is smooth and without sharp howls.
At the time of writing and the start of tests on the graphics card Gigabyte Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G was flashed with BIOS version F3. All settings displayed by default, the indicator of the Power Limit was set to the position 0%, in order to demonstrate model capabilities out of the box.
The novelty has shown interesting results. By the end of the test, Heaven Benchmark 4.0, the fans barely spin up to 1340 rpm, making the card very quiet. The GPU temperature reached 80°C, the frequency is dynamically hopped in the range 1252-1290 MHz. The limiting factor turned out to be low sewn TDP, to which we will return. The temperature of the power subsystem has reached an acceptable 85°C.
On turn fifteen runs of 3DMark Fire Strike “test of stability” which, as shown, has proved to be an excellent load for graphics cards.
Their results were obtained at 81°C at 1720 Rev/min and frequency 1204-1256 MHz.
Will show the results of popular benchmarks and games.
Here is a graph of the temperature of the graphics core/system power and noise from the fan speed of the cooling system. This card is supplied by the sensor in the field of power supply circuits of the GPU VRM1, whose testimony was filmed by the program HWiNFO64. Sensor VRM2 is responsible for the temperature of the memory power subsystem, however, the many models of Radeon RX 470/ 480 RX it is deactivated. Additional measurements were carried out using a pyrometer.
The results of the research capacity of the cooling system.
Cooling system WindForce in this case turned out to be quite optimized. It is possible to make it quieter and colder. It is a pity that a certain balance exists in the firmware: hot if you are using an old version of the BIOS, a little noisy. Despite the fact that discomfort does not occur all within acceptable limits, still want the perfect Radeon RX 480 .
Graph the power consumption of the whole stand depending on the frequencies of video cards and operating voltage of the GPU.
Power consumption in 2D was measured at idle (on the desktop). Testing in Heaven BenchMark 4.0 was conducted under the following settings – quality: ultra, tessellation: extreme, AA8x, 1920 x 1080 resolution; MSI Kombustor – 2xMSAA, 1920 x 1080.
Gigabyte left a good impression due to the use monitored by PWM PCB and productive cooling system. New has established itself as a successful modification Radeon RX 480, which received enhanced power subsystem, factory overclocking, additional power in the form of an eight-pin connector, expanded set of interfaces and a three-year warranty.
Note the original cooler WindForce, adequately cope with the cooling of the graphics card. Minor simplifications touched the firmware in which the heat pack were reduced to 127 W to make new energy-efficient, and the curve of the rpm of the fans were left not fully developed. However, it’s the little things and minor quibbles compared to other models from the line of Radeon RX 480, which we will consider in future.
The final conclusion is simple – Gigabyte Radeon RX 480 G1 Gaming 4G will be a good choice to build a gaming system focused on the resolution of Full HD, with 4 GB of video memory today are the best solution.