MSI GeForce GTX 780 Ti GAMING 3G Video Card Review @ [H]

rinaldo00

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True, as I said before [H] came to defend AMD and you guys were very fair.

I just have two points

1. I thought the 290X did say "Up to 1GHz", if not then my memory was wrong.

2. I am not talking about false advertising, I am talking about how in both circumstances, by coincidence, the cards that reviewers recieved were faster than what consumers got. In the AMD situation it was due to fan speeds, in the MSI situation it was a base clock setting. In both situations an overly angry consumer could claim that faster cards were sent to reviewers on purpose to get glowing reviews. That claim against AMD did spread on the net. That is the 'fraud' claim I am talking about. At the risk of the ban hammer, If you cannot see a similarity then I don't know what to say.
 
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psyside

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True, as I said before [H] came to defend AMD and you guys were very fair.

I just have two points

1. I thought the 290X did say "Up to 1GHz", if not then my memory was wrong.

2. I am not talking about false advertising, I am talking about how in both circumstances, by coincidence, the cards that reviewers recieved were faster than what consumers got. In the AMD situation it was due to fan speeds, in the MSI situation it was a base clock setting. In both situations an overly angry consumer could claim that faster cards were sent to reviewers on purpose to get glowing reviews. That claim against AMD did spread on the net. That is the 'fraud' claim I am talking about. At the risk of the ban hammer, If you cannot see a similarity then I don't know what to say.

Its ok, its Nvidia so any issue will be forgotten in the matter of hours. Lets see if now there are tech sites who spread panic and blow this issue out of the proportion, like Toms, Tech Report, and so on, but it wont happen, trust me NO ONE will ever make an article about it. And while we are at it, can you imagine if you where working as a tech press, and Nvidia marketing agents approach to you and basically force you to investigate AMD frame latency issues? just think about it, Nvidia is forcing tech sites/writers to spread information about the issue AMD has about frame latency, they even created software for it, FCAT.

What a dirty tactics based company, that's why i don't, and i will never like them.
 

Quartz-1

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I was asking upthread about SLI. I've just taken a gander at the thread on TechPowerUp and it seems that while two card SLI is okay, the cooler prevents three card SLI.
 

TechBlaster

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2. I am not talking about false advertising, I am talking about how in both circumstances, by coincidence, the cards that reviewers recieved were faster than what consumers got. In the AMD situation it was due to fan speeds, in the MSI situation it was a base clock setting. In both situations an overly angry consumer could claim that faster cards were sent to reviewers on purpose to get glowing reviews. That claim against AMD did spread on the net. That is the 'fraud' claim I am talking about. At the risk of the ban hammer, If you cannot see a similarity then I don't know what to say.

This really isn't the case though, is it? The 780 ti's that reviewers received were not faster than what consumers got. They only defaulted to a faster base clock on installation for some reason. The clock speeds on the boards available to consumers & reviewers thru the gaming app selection buttons were the same (OC Mode, Gaming Mode & Silent Mode)? Isn't this true or am I missing something?
 

rinaldo00

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This really isn't the case though, is it? The 780 ti's that reviewers received were not faster than what consumers got. They only defaulted to a faster base clock on installation for some reason. The clock speeds on the boards available to consumers & reviewers thru the gaming app selection buttons were the same (OC Mode, Gaming Mode & Silent Mode)? Isn't this true or am I missing something?

You are correct, but it takes a savy owner to make the change. It looks like reviewers got a different BIOS, one that defaults to OC mode while consumers got a BIOS set to a lower mode. Without making any changes the review cards would be slightly faster.

The 290 series cards that reviewers got were not actually faster either. Tom's Hardware saw a difference in the throttling performance between their review card and a consumer card they bought later, and the net went a little nuts. It turned out to be a difference in fan speed profiles which was fixed in a quickly released driver update, but savy owners could have set the fan profiles themselves anyway.

If you want to read what started the furor here it is
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-r9-290-review-benchmark,3659-2.html
The resolution is explained here
http://www.bit-tech.net/news/hardware/2013/11/06/amd-denies-cherry-picking/1

This was the quote that had the big impact, and it was in bold letters on their site.

And in light of the almost-30% difference in frequency between ceiling and floor, it’s a lot harder to put confidence in the representativeness of press-sampled cards

In the MSI situation it is being correctly assumed to be a mistake, in the AMD situation they were accused of cherry picking review cards. This was an actual headline

AMD denies cherry-picking R9 290, 290X review cards
 
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TechBlaster

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You are correct, but it takes a savy owner to make the change.

You start the app from it's desktop icon. All that comes up is a box with 3 buttons, one for each mode. You just click the one you want. Couldn't be much easier. I guess your definition of 'savy owner' is different than mine:).
 

wadec22

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picked one of these up last night and its outstanding. plugs in at 980, is boosting to 1110 in games and is silent.

downloaded most current msi gaming app and switching to oc mode is 1150 core boost. still super quiet. love this card.
 
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rinaldo00

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You start the app from it's desktop icon. All that comes up is a box with 3 buttons, one for each mode. You just click the one you want. Couldn't be much easier. I guess your definition of 'savy owner' is different than mine:).

Well, I just meant you have to know enough to install it and that there are 3 modes. Believe me, I have seen users even on here clueless about GPU monitoring software like Afterburner or Precision X. They just put the card in and leave it at that ;)
 

jeremyshaw

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Well, I just meant you have to know enough to install it and that there are 3 modes. Believe me, I have seen users even on here clueless about GPU monitoring software like Afterburner or Precision X. They just put the card in and leave it at that ;)

Or just want less crap running on their systems (i.e, Precision's default screencap software - optional, of course).

I'm just waiting for the day nVidia puts most of the functionality right into their drivers, much as AMD has done.
 

FrgMstr

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We have a response back from MSI on the clock issue pertaining to review cards and retail GAMING cards. Looks to be nothing more to the situation than pushing a software button so that the cards run at the speeds shown in the review. From the review side of the fence, it would have been great to know this, but there really is not much of a story to tell.

My name is Mark Tran and I am a Marketing Specialist at MSI. We recently were made aware that some of you who purchased a MSI graphic card with the clock speed being lower than what the media reviewed. We can assure you that this is not some sort of shenanigans or a marketing ploy. We did send the media review samples with the OC Mode speed selected which is included in the program called the “Gaming App.” This setting is different than what the retail video cards are being shipped with. All consumers who purchase our “GAMING” VGA cards should have the default Gaming Mode clock speed selected, but by installing the “Gaming App” you can increase the clock speed of what was represented in most reviews by pressing the OC Mode button. This does NOT void the warranty. We simply wanted to promote our software called the “Gaming App” which is only included in our GAMING branded video card products. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience for not explaining it clearly to some of the media that published reviews and to the gamers and enthusiasts that purchased one of our GAMING products.
 

Quartz-1

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That would be guilty as charged, then. I may cancel my order - I'll sleep on it.
 

257Tony

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I don't see this as any kind of a big deal. Anyone that is using some sort of monitoring software to see what their clock speeds are is smart enough to know how to oc a card.
 

xoleras

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You have to install a "Gaming App" to get the reviewed speed? Lame.

Eh, probably not. Most Kepler GPUs boost substantially higher than NV's advertised boost anyway, one of my ACX cards boosted to around 1100 with no intervention. I suspect the same would be true of most MSI gamer cards - most of them would probably boost at that speed or higher, although there could be exceptions. The nvidia GTX 780 boost is around 900mhz if memory serves, but any GTX 780 you buy will boost a good bit higher - especially custom cards.

Aside from that, if your card is like 10mhz lower on the boost you can simply use whatever application you want to overclock. Afterburner, precision, MSI's app, it doesn't seem like a big deal really. Seems like a non story really because every Kepler GPU boosts far higher than NVs advertised boost, with the NV specified boost just being there as something of a guaranteed speed. But in the real world, in my experience, every GTX 6xx and 7xx boosts way higher than NV's specified boost. I think the same would be true of the MSI gamer card.
 

rinaldo00

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A lower base clock does result in a lower max boost clock as I posted earlier

OK, from the TPU comments the cards do BOOST less

On stock (980/1046) actual in game speed is 1097MHz. On OC Mode (using the Gaming App), actual in game is speed 40MHz higher than than that, which is 1137Mhz
 

JCNiest5

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Didn't read through the whole thread so I'm not sure if it has been mentioned. The one thing annoying to me for MSI's Gaming video card (at least the GTX 770 Gaming 4GB I've owned for a month or so) is that the heatpipes get in the way of 6-pin PCI-E power connectors. I had to pull the heatpipes away from the PCB a little to release the locking latch for the PCI-E power connector. Granted, you won't be doing that on a daily basis, but it still annoyed the heck out of me. Hope MSI has changed it a little so none of the heatpipes get in the way.
 

Term-X

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Their statement is a bit contradictory, isn't it?

First they say:

We can assure you that this is not some sort of shenanigans or a marketing ploy.

Then:

We simply wanted to promote our software called the "Gaming App" which is only included in our GAMING branded video card products.


Sounds like a marketing ploy to me.
 

thekipper

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When I saw this response came from a marketing specialist, I knew this would not end well.
 

psyside

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Ahahahah :D

And yet, Nvidia loyalists try to defend MSI, but its an Nvidia card so its all good.
 
D

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I have this card and I love it. But why doesn't MSI just release the BIOS on their website that enables "OC Mode" by default (1020MHz Core Clock) and call it a day?
 

TechBlaster

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At first I thought this was no big deal. Just use the gaming app & select the profile you want. I assumed your selection was stored in non-volatile memory, but NO !!! When you re-boot the card reverts to it's default 980 Mhz default clock. If seems if you want to run at 1020 Mhz default you've got to start up the gaming app & select it every time you boot up.

Didn't the marketing guy that gave the explanation say they wanted to promote the gaming app? Pretty lame MSI. You created a PITA app that I've got to click every time to get the profile that the reviewers cards came stock with.
 

Quartz-1

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I've just received mine - I was too late to cancel. Running the Heaven benchmark at defaulrt settings the fan quickly became noticeable, but was easily covered by the ambient music.

This card is not for those who wish to use multiple of these in SLI. The rear SLI connector is blocked entirely by the cooler and the front one is partially blocked. It will be okay as the bottom-most card.
 

Unknown-One

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Did anyone go nuts about how review cards were clocked higher than consumer cards like everyone did over the 290X cards? The 'fraud' panic was epic.

http://hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1800281
http://lucca.hardforum.com/rewrite/...les&id=1&match=1&source=none&destination=none
You're missing a pretty key difference. The issues with the Radeon review samples were on reference-design cards from AMD themselves.

This is a non-reference-design GeForce card, from MSI, who's clocks are controlled by MSI (not Nvidia), launched well-after the reference cards (and the reference cards from Nvidia didn't misrepresent clockspeeds in reviews).
 

rinaldo00

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You're missing a pretty key difference. The issues with the Radeon review samples were on reference-design cards from AMD themselves.

This is a non-reference-design GeForce card, from MSI, who's clocks are controlled by MSI (not Nvidia), launched well-after the reference cards (and the reference cards from Nvidia didn't misrepresent clockspeeds in reviews).

I never said Nvidia should get any blame. This WAS a Nvidia based product however. Now as I said the criticism AMD received was way over the top, but MSI got none.
 

rinaldo00

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At first I thought this was no big deal. Just use the gaming app & select the profile you want. I assumed your selection was stored in non-volatile memory, but NO !!! When you re-boot the card reverts to it's default 980 Mhz default clock. If seems if you want to run at 1020 Mhz default you've got to start up the gaming app & select it every time you boot up.

Didn't the marketing guy that gave the explanation say they wanted to promote the gaming app? Pretty lame MSI. You created a PITA app that I've got to click every time to get the profile that the reviewers cards came stock with.

I'm sure you can set the app to autorun on boot up, switch to OC mode, then minimize
 

Quartz-1

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Another small datum: I've not yet changed the fan to have a minimum of 0% rather than 30%, and the fan noise is very noticeable even at idle.
 

TechBlaster

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I'm sure you can set the app to autorun on boot up, switch to OC mode, then minimize

Probably, but the point is I don't want to have to do that. I'd rather it just booted straight to the OC speed. I originally wanted the Gigabyte Ghz edition but it wasn't in stock anywhere. The MSI card is very good, quiet, seems to work at all speeds fine. I just think having to fool with that gaming app is a PITA that I shouldn't have to deal with. I'm a little sorry I didn't just wait & buy the Gigabyte.
 

xoleras

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Probably, but the point is I don't want to have to do that. I'd rather it just booted straight to the OC speed. I originally wanted the Gigabyte Ghz edition but it wasn't in stock anywhere. The MSI card is very good, quiet, seems to work at all speeds fine. I just think having to fool with that gaming app is a PITA that I shouldn't have to deal with. I'm a little sorry I didn't just wait & buy the Gigabyte.

So MSI's gaming app requires you to load it up and hit a button every time on every bootup? Am I understand this correctly? Honestly. That's pretty stupid - MSI should develop better software than this. Anyway, have you tried Afterburner or Precision? You can actually get those to run at startup and have them set your overclocks - and they auto apply on boot. Both afterburner and precision X are developed by unwinder at guru3d, and they're both pretty great apps for OC'ing. Generally speaking once you set your overclock (and you select the option within either app) - you're done, it is applied at every startup without having to go in and screw around with the software.

I haven't used MSI's gaming app, but if you can figure out the offset required for the overclock it might be less hassle to use Precision or Afterburner. You won't have to touch it ever again after setting up the offset overclocks.
 

TechBlaster

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So MSI's gaming app requires you to load it up and hit a button every time on every bootup? Am I understand this correctly? Honestly. That's pretty stupid - MSI should develop better software than this. Anyway, have you tried Afterburner or Precision? You can actually get those to run at startup and have them set your overclocks - and they auto apply on boot. Both afterburner and precision X are developed by unwinder at guru3d, and they're both pretty great apps for OC'ing. Generally speaking once you set your overclock (and you select the option within either app) - you're done, it is applied at every startup without having to go in and screw around with the software.

I haven't used MSI's gaming app, but if you can figure out the offset required for the overclock it might be less hassle to use Precision or Afterburner. You won't have to touch it ever again after setting up the offset overclocks.


You guys are missing the point. I don't want to fool with loading & clicking MSI software. I don't want to have something else 'run at startup'. What I'd like is for the card to boot to the speeds the reviewers were seeing without screwing around with anything else. Yea, the marketing guy 'apologized'. Who cares !!! This card cost ~ $700. An apology shouldn't be necessary because the cards should perform like the review versions or better, not at a slower default speed that requires you fooling with extra software to make them work at the speeds the review sites saw. BTW, my feelings on marketing guys is they're right up there with used car salesmen & Congressmen as far as integrity goes :)

And yes, the gaming app requires you to run it & click a button every time. If MSI's Engineers were worth anything they could have assigned a non-volatile memory location on the card that their gaming app could have written to. At boot, the cards bios could have checked that location & started at the appropriate speed that the end-user desired. Instead, I've got a lame app that requires me to load & click every time. And I don't want to have other extra junk running at boot to boost the speed up either.
 
D

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Another small datum: I've not yet changed the fan to have a minimum of 0% rather than 30%, and the fan noise is very noticeable even at idle.

Really? This card is whisper quiet for me. By far the most quiet video card I've ever owned. MSI's Twin Frozr fans are the best.
 

Quartz-1

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Really? This card is whisper quiet for me. By far the most quiet video card I've ever owned. MSI's Twin Frozr fans are the best.

Well maybe, but the rest of my PC is utterly silent - no fans or moving parts at all. So the noise it does make is very noticeable.
 

TechBlaster

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Oh I get the point, I was just trying to help. I am just surprised more people did not react like you.

In reality, the base clock speed difference between gaming mode & OC mode really isn't that significant so this problem with the MSI Gaming 780 ti shouldn't be a big problem. I guess it just bothers me the more I think about it that I made my purchasing decision based on the review here & @ TechPowerUp then find out you've got to play games with MSI's app to get the speeds that were shown in the tests with a clean boot.

It also constantly suprises me how much people dismiss board issues. As an example, I was thinking about a 290X before I got this board. I had one of the Asus boards on order thru Amazon, but canceled it when I read horror stories on various forums about the current state of Asus customer support & RMA issues. During this period I was watching various boards to see what issues people were having with 290's & 290X's. What suprised me was there were a lot of posts about 'black screen' lockups & other stability issues with cards that were suposidly running @ stock speeds. There were a lot of people who found 'fixes' by changing ram voltages & tweaking other board parameters thru 3rd party apps. A lot of these people seemed to take this in stride & didn't have an issue after their tweaks. These were $500 cards (much more, now that the mining craze has impacted the prices so much). I don't know why these people aren't screaming bloody murder about the cards. If I pay this much money I expect the card to be pretty damn perfect. You shouldn't have to accept a half-baked product. Seems a lot of people don't share my view. Guess they must like bending over when the manufacturer tells them to :).
 
D

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Again, all this could be fixed if MSI would just release the BIOS reviewers had. Asus releases updated BIOS's for their video cards so I don't know why MSI does not. With that said, I do use the MSI Gaming App because, as opposed to Afterburner, putting it in OC mode also changes the fan profile and allows the temps to be a little bit lower. This helps because my case doesn't have the greatest airflow being a quiet case. (Fractal R4) (and yes I'm aware you can change fan profiles from within afterburner, but with the Gaming App it is easier just to press one button and be done with it.)
 

xoleras

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In reality, the base clock speed difference between gaming mode & OC mode really isn't that significant so this problem with the MSI Gaming 780 ti shouldn't be a big problem. I guess it just bothers me the more I think about it that I made my purchasing decision based on the review here & @ TechPowerUp then find out you've got to play games with MSI's app to get the speeds that were shown in the tests with a clean boot.

It also constantly suprises me how much people dismiss board issues. As an example, I was thinking about a 290X before I got this board. I had one of the Asus boards on order thru Amazon, but canceled it when I read horror stories on various forums about the current state of Asus customer support & RMA issues. During this period I was watching various boards to see what issues people were having with 290's & 290X's. What suprised me was there were a lot of posts about 'black screen' lockups & other stability issues with cards that were suposidly running @ stock speeds. There were a lot of people who found 'fixes' by changing ram voltages & tweaking other board parameters thru 3rd party apps. A lot of these people seemed to take this in stride & didn't have an issue after their tweaks. These were $500 cards (much more, now that the mining craze has impacted the prices so much). I don't know why these people aren't screaming bloody murder about the cards. If I pay this much money I expect the card to be pretty damn perfect. You shouldn't have to accept a half-baked product. Seems a lot of people don't share my view. Guess they must like bending over when the manufacturer tells them to :).

Two points. I can see both sides of the argument. MSI carries some of the weight as well.

First, I can respect your opinion here but I don't get it. I really, really REALLY don't get it. Afterburner and precision take up nothing in terms of resources and they're both staple tools for overclocking, which as far as I can tell most everyone here does - maybe you're not into it? I don't quite understand the hesitation in using them because they're not bloatware. They're so widespread in terms of use from overclockers that I just find your approach here surprising; these two tools are very common. And, they're literally a joke in terms of resource use and take nothing in terms of memory use and all of that stuff, and doesn't create bloat. Unless you're not into overclocking which some guys aren't. And that's all good.

However, caveats apply, MSI isn't blameless either:

With that said, I don't get why MSI didn't set the chips for the applicable boost without requiring software intervention. That's the approach that EVERY other AIB uses. Every other factory overclocked card has a BIOS that basically sets the minimum boost, with the actual boost generally being far higher. For instance, my EVGA SC ACX has a guaranteed boost of 1014 (IIRC) but actually boosts past 1100 out of the box. So I don't excuse MSI on that front, they should just implement this in their BIOS instead of relying on software to set the overclock mode. It should always have the factory overclock.

Let me also clarify something. MSI advertises a boost of 1046MHZ on the MSI gamer 780ti. Is this what the OC mode sets? Or does it set the overclock above and beyond that? If the overclock mode is above 1046, then it seems MSI is meeting the advertised spec without the software. It's a grey area for sure, I dunno. All of their advertised specs indicate 1046MHz and not 1080. 1080 being the added bonus for their OC mode. Which, I dunno. Why not just set it to 1080MHz from the factory setting and be done with it. ::SHRUG:: Strange and weird grey area...they're meeting the advertised spec but with the OC mode requiring software intervention. Doesn't quite make sense. In any case I wouldn't call it a half baked product, although the OC mode is certainly strange indeed.
 
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On stock shipping BIOS here is what I get:

Core Clock (Base): 980MHz
Boost Clock (Advertised): 1046Mhz
Boost Clock (Actual in game): 1097MHz

With OC Mode using the Gaming App I get the following speeds (as monitored by AB):

Core Clock (Base): 1020MHz
Boost Clock (Actual in game): 1137MHz

So yes there is an advertised Boost clock but it typically goes faster in game and is governed by temperature and power.
 
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xoleras

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Honestly, it seems to me like the OC mode is an "icing on the cake" type of setting. The advertised boost is 1046 and doesn't seem to require software intervention, so if that's the case - I don't see the controversy. Although I *can* respect the argument that OC mode should be the factory default even if it isn't advertised as the boost clock. Am I getting this right? I haven't used an MSI card since the GTX 600 series, so i'm not quire sure how the MSI gamer stuff works. If 1046 is the boost and doesn't require software, I don't get what the controversy is about. It's meeting that boost without the software isn't it? Or am I really missing something?

So on the one hand, the advertised boost is being met without software? But I can totally see how one would want the OC mode, the icing on the cake mode, to be the default. I dunno. I see both sides of the argument I guess. Essentially, if every MSI gamer card can do 1085MHz as the OC mode, despite the boost being advertised as 1046MHz, why not just make every card 1085? Very strange.
 

rinaldo00

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These are the advertised clock speeds from the MSI website
Core/Memory

1020MHz Core (Boost Clock:1085MHz) (OC Mode)
980MHz Core (Boost Clock:1046MHz) (Gaming Mode)
876MHz Core (Boost Clock:928MHz) (Silent Mode)
3072 GDDR5 7000MHz Memory
 

rinaldo00

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Essentially, if every MSI gamer card can do 1085MHz as the OC mode, despite the boost being advertised as 1046MHz, why not just make every card 1085? Very strange.

The MSI marketting guy explains it, it was done to get people to use the MSI gaming app

From page 5 of this thread

We simply wanted to promote our software called the “Gaming App” which is only included in our GAMING branded video card products.

I interupt this to mean it was gimped on purpose to force users to try their gaming app if the user wanted max performance.
 
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