Top positive review
2 people found this helpful
Excellent all around card
on June 22, 2012
I bought one of these cards when Tom's Hardware was recommending it as their top choice for a mid-range card (they now recommend the newer Radeon 7850 at the similar price level). I choose the MSI model because of the excellent reputation of their cooling solution. I was replacing a Radeon card in a small, not well ventilated case and wanted something cool...and it worked. While the older card was running in the 85C range, the MSI card runs around 65C under load and it considerably quieter to boot. As I started looking more closely at the card, I was pleasantly surprised to find out how fast it is. MSI slightly overclocks the card, bringing it to rough parity with a stock 570 and using Afterburner I can generally get another 10% with no loss in stability.
I run two 30" 2560x1600 monitors and get 30+ fps on max settings in most games.
Based on this experience I bought another card for my wife's machine and then when Amazon was selling the card at another $20 discount I bought a third one.
I am now running two of these cards in an SLI configuration in my main machine. In SLI, the combination is stable and benchmarks better than either a new GTX 680 or AMD 7970. I haven't found a game yet where I don't average over 60 fps, again at 2560x1600 resolution. The card that is on the inside (where the air flow is blocked by the other card) runs about 5C warmer, but this means they both still run under 70C when gaming.
Given the short availability and inflated prices on the GTX 600 series, a find an SLI combination of these 560 cards to be an excellent choice. The drivers and PCB designs are stable...I do not seem to see any of the problems folks are reporting with non-stock 600 series cards at this point. I have always found and continue to find nVidia's drivers to be more stable and provide a better UI than ATI's.
Finally, MSI has built a really lovely card. It is solid as a rock and feels and looks good. It is not a match for ASUS's 3-slot beasts physically, but then it takes 1 less slot and reviews tend to find the Frozr cooler matches or beats ASUS's solution.
In summary: As a single card mid-range solution, I think this card is hard to beat: you get nVidia's better drivers; MSI's great cooling; and a good gaming experience even at 2560x1600 resolution. Buying a second of these cards and SLI'ing them provides me with better performance at less cost than it would have to upgrade to a 670 or 680. Of course, if you want don't already have one of these cards, buying two of them will be more expensive, but could be an option while 600s remain in short supply.