In their heyday in mid-2015, the GeForce GTX 980 Ti and the Radeon R9 Fury X were extremely popular graphics cards. Though quite similar in terms of performance, the GTX 980 Ti was the most recommended card because it had a slight performance advantage and still used less power. The Fury X was still a engineering marvel and will be considered one of the most exciting and interesting graphics cards in history, even if sales don't reflect that.
However, as we've learned, pricing in the technology industry can change quickly, and it's always the price that makes or damages a graphics card. What was initially considered a bad purchase can quickly become a new must. In the case of AMD's Fury X, the starting MSRP of $ 650 in 2015 was a tough sell as Nvidia's Maxwell architecture was in full swing while a competing card offered accurate pricing.
Today, the Fury X is available from major online sellers like Amazon for $ 300 to $ 400, while the GTX 980 Ti is no longer for sale because it was replaced by the GTX 1070 in June 2016.
Sellers like Newegg have refurbished inventory, but they cost more than the GTX 1070 – obviously not worth buying. Still, there are second-hand deals for around $ 300, and at that price, the 980 Ti could be a worthwhile investment.
I only have a reference model GTX 980 Ti available for testing, but that's fine, since the Fury X only uses the AMD design and was not delivered overclocked at the factory. I manually overclocked both graphics cards to find out what potential they have for games today.
As standard, the 980 Ti runs with a base clock of 1 GHz with a maximum boost clock of 1.2 GHz and a memory speed of 1.75 GHz. I overclocked the core to a base clock rate of 1.25 GHz, which resulted in a boost clock of 1.48 GHz. The memory also reached 2 GHz for a transfer rate of 8 Gbit / s. All in all, this means an overclocking of 25% for the core and an increase of 14% for the memory.
I tried a few different tricks on the Fury X, but it only went up to 1150 MHz for the core and 525 MHz for the memory, 10% core overclocking and 5% for the memory.
Now let's move on to the benchmarks to see where these previous-generation titans fit into today's landscape and whether it's worth buying them at lower prices.
Benchmarks: Far Cry Primal, Call of Duty, Gears of War 4
First, we have Far Cry Primal and here we previously found that the Fury X with the ultra quality settings is good for an average of 58 fps at 1440p. When overclocking, the Fury X increased the average frame rate to 60 fps, which is only a 3% increase in performance, although the average has improved twice.
The reference 980 Ti immediately suited the overclocked Fury X with an average of 60 fps and a minimum of 51 fps. So this is pretty competitive. This also meant that the GTX 980 Ti was only 8% slower than the graphics card of the GTX 1070 Founders Edition.
However, the 980 Ti still has a lot in the tank and we can access it by overclocking. Our overclocking increased the average frame rate by 17% and enabled 70 fps with a minimum of 58 fps. This made the Reference 980 Ti 6% faster than the factory-overclocked Gigabyte GTX 1070 G1 gaming graphics card.
The Fury X was not much slower than the GTX 1070 Founders Edition graphics card in Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, although overclocking only increased performance by 3% to be within a frame of the Founders Edition graphics card. Compared to the GTX 980 Ti in this title, the Fury X is 6% faster at the standard clock rates.
While it may not be as fast as our custom overclocking, we have found that it is possible to get an additional 17% out of the GTX 980 Ti, bringing the average frame rate to 83 fps or 8% faster than the overclocked Fury X configuration and GTX 1070 G1 gaming model rises 4% faster than gigabytes.
The results of Gears of War 4 are shocking – I was so surprised that I ran the standard and overclocked GTX 980 Ti configurations several times. At standard clock speeds, the GTX 980 Ti matched the Fury X with similar performance, making both of them slightly slower than the GTX 1070 G1 Gaming.
After overclocking, however, the GTX 980 Ti finds 26% more performance in this title and increases the average frame rate to 91 fps. This tremendous increase in performance meant that not only was the GTX 980 Ti much faster than the Fury X and factory-overclocked GTX 1070, it wasn't much slower than the GTX 1080 either.