Originally Posted by Noviets
Hey guys, just wondering about the R9 290X Powercolour card, its $120 cheaper than the others, does it not overclock well?
I want to put a block on it so aftermarket cooling isn't something I need (as I know that the stock blowers are horrible)
I'll likely get it from PCCaseGear
or Computer Alliance
I'm running 1080P, I was going to get a second 7970 for CFX, but if I get a 290X, the performance is better right? I could get a second in the future, will the 8350 hold me back from the second or would I still benefit from it?
To start with that is a cheap 290X! As it's reference there is basically no difference apart from the stickers on it/branding on the box. The only thing that changes is the warranty however.
If you want to waterblock it, i think it's the way to go!
As the majority of non-ref cards have non-ref PCB's which means you won't (or at least will struggle) to get a block for it, assuming you're talking about a fullcover one that is.
I'd say to not get a second 7970/280x for Crossfire, as a 290x works out cheaper (once you sell the 7970) and you can add another one later easier (Adding three 7970's is hard as the power, heat and space). You will lose a reasonable amount of performance in going to a 290x instead of two 7970's but the crossfire issues aren't present, you'll have less power and heat to deal with (Once you waterblock it). It's also a cheaper solution to watercool as you only need one block.
I came from Crossfire 7950's myself, I'd had them modded to run 280W and overclocked to 1150/1250 or so and a 290 is a bit of a downgrade but I don't really notice it all that much as everything I play still runs fine and lacks crossfire/stuttering issues now.
That being said I've had more problems with 290 drivers so far, BUT they will get better, whereas 7970 Crossfire won't.