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HWM+HardwareZone.com Tech Awards 2016: Editor's Choice - Part 2

By Team HardwareZone - 27 Feb 2016

Best Graphics Chip

Best Graphics Chip

For the purpose of our Best Graphics Card title, we pitted the AMD Radeon R9 Fury X against the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti, the finest single GPU graphics cards in the industry. While the GeForce GTX 980 Ti is not NVIDIA's most powerful single-GPU card (that honor goes to the GeForce GTX Titan X), we've selected it because it goes head-to-head against the Radeon R9 Fury X in terms of their US$649 launch price as well as the fact that it is their top consumer graphics card. Furthermore, considering the former card's June 2015 launch, it's likely that NVIDIA timed it to pre-empt the impending release of the Radeon Fury X and tighten its hold on the upper echelons of the graphics card market.

Nevertheless, the Radeon R9 Fury X has a lot going for it. It is the first card to feature High Bandwidth Memory (HBM), and its compact size and stellar liquid-cooling loop makes it an extremely compelling choice. However, the GeForce GTX 980 Ti is a force to be reckoned with as well. Although it uses more conventional GDDR5 memory, it packs 6GB of that and boasts a cutdown GM200 GPU (the same as that used on the top-end GeForce GTX Titan X), effectively setting it up to deliver performance close to NVIDIA's flagship.



  • AMD Radeon R9 Fury X
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti


And the winner is...

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti.

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti outperformed the AMD Radeon R9 Fury X in all the 3DMark benchmarks. It edged ahead in Tomb Raider and Crysis 3 as well, showing that it's able to maintain its lead even in real-world gaming benchmarks. Its lead is especially commanding at 1080p resolutions, which is still the resolution that the majority of gamers play at. As a result, despite the Radeon R9 Fury X's use of HBM and liquid-cooling, the GeForce GTX 980 Ti still comes out on top because it performs better, and still costs about the same as AMD's flagship. From a performance and value standpoint, there's no beating a GeForce GTX 980 Ti, which offers close to the Titan X's performance at a far more attractive price. Here's a small snapshot of the full performance results:-

Scoring Breakdown
Criteria/Model AMD Radeon R9 Fury X NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti
Performance 8.0 9.0
Features 8.5 8.5
Value 8.5 8.5
Overall 8.0
Price (at launch) US$649 US$649

For more details on how we selected our winners, check out the full reviews and articles listed at the References section at the end.

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