Sapphire Vapor-X and Tri-X are the manufacturer’s most emblematic cooling solutions. Each of them benefit from some technologies to enhance the cooling and keep the GPU under low temperature. But Sapphire thought it would be a good idea to combine those two solutions into a brand new one, more capable, and more interesting. The result is a Vapor-X cooler with 3 fans (Tri-X) and some extra features to ensure stability and silence during the gaming sessions.
Vapor-X R9 290 4G D5
The SAPPHIRE R9 290 Vapor-X Edition features several of the company’s industry-leading technologies. Based on the award-winning Graphics Core Next (GCN) architecture from AMD with 2560 Stream Processors, the SAPPHIRE R9 290 Vapor-X Edition boasts 4GB of the latest GDDR5 memory running at 1400MHz (5.6GB/s effective) and high speed engine clocks of 1030MHz.
Dual ball bearings on the fan spindles ensure smooth running and long life and are designed to keep out dust. A quiet cooling solution, Two ball-bearing fan features a high-efficiency blade design.
10mm heat pipe
10mm diameter copper heat pipe has 53% better efficiency at dissipating heat than 8mm heat-pipe. Single 10Ø heat pipe is capable to handle 90W thermal dissipating. (8Ø is designed for TDP 65W). With 1x 10mm, 2 x 8mm and 2x 6mm heat pipe, the module is designed to handle over 300W GPU Power.
Component Heat Spreader
A long the edge of the card, the PCB is extended out with copper foil exposed to air. An additional heat-sink mounted directly to this copper layer allows heat absorbing into the PCB from the GPU and other components, and transferred to the heat-sink and cooled by the airflow. Basically, Heat Spreader is able to reduce core temperature by 2 degree C.
Black Diamond Choke
To ensure best stability SAPPHIRE special products utilize Black Diamond Chokes. The choke is an important component of the power regulation on a graphics card, and the SAPPHIRE Black Diamond Choke with integral heatsink runs 10% cooler and with 25% more power efficiency than a normal choke.
This product supports both Legacy and UEFI BIOS. By factory default, the card itself is under Legacy mode. By pressing the button with SAPPHIRE logo, UEFI mode will be easily enabled.
Secure bootSapphire product with “Dual Firmware Support” function equips the UEFI firmware that is digitally signed and approved by Microsoft for Secure Boot. With Windows8’s secured boot architecture and its establishment of a root of trust, the customer is protected from malicious code executing in the boot path by ensuring that only signed, certified “known good” code and boot loaders can execute before the opening system itself loads.
Faster boot and resume timesWhen compare to the legacy BIOS, system with UEFI has a much faster boot and resume time to the OS.
16K Hours Capacitor
High quality aluminum-made long life capacitor lengthens the life time of the product. Improved reliability and better overclocking are possible by using only high-polymer, aluminum capacitors which possess far superior characteristics than regular aluminum capacitor for a longer product life. When operational temperatures drop by 20°C, the product life span is extended by a factor of ten, when the operational temperature increases by 20°C, the product life span only decreases by 10%.
Intelligent Fan Control II
Intelligent fan control allows one or more fans to be stopped for lower noise when the card is under light load and automaticaly restarted when the card temperature rises
DirectX® 12 is a new, “console-like” graphics API from Microsoft® that empowers game developers with more direct and obvious control of PC hardware. This direct or “explicit” control better exposes the hardware resources of AMD Radeon™ GPUs to yield higher hardware throughput and, ultimately, more performance for users. To put it simply: much more efficient hardware through smarter software! At the discretion of a game developer, this superior efficiency can be spent on higher framerates, lower latency (VR), lower power consumption, better image quality, or some calculated balance of all four. In any scenario, gamers stand to benefit greatly from choosing AMD hardware to run their favorite DirectX® 12 game.
AMD Freesync technology
No stuttering. No tearing. Just gaming.
AMD FreeSync™ technology allows a compatible graphics card and monitor to dynamically change frame rates for the optimum display quality without tearing or stuay.
Freesync uses industry-standard displayport Adaptive-Sync Eliminates screen tearing without all the usual lag and latency
- Synchronizes the refresh rate of a compatible monitor to the frame rate of your content, however much it varies
- Monitor partners are validating with drivers from AMD now
AMD Eyefinity Technology
Multidisplay technology for gaming, productivity and entertainment
We are taking you beyond the boundaries of traditional PC displays. AMD Eyefinity technology expands the traditional limits of desktop computing by multiplying your screen area. With multiple monitors, games become more immersive, workstations become more useful and you become more productive (an average of 42% more productive according to one study).
Take your PC games to the next level of reality and immersion. Most modern games look great on three screens, and only AMD Radeon™ graphics offer you the ability to play across five screens for an eye-popping gaming experience. Other combinations and configurations with up to six screens work too.1 Create your dream display.
Harness the power of multiple GPUs
AMD CrossFire™ technology is the ultimate multi-GPU performance gaming platform. Unlocking game-dominating power, AMD CrossFire™ harnesses the power of two or more discrete graphics cards working in parallel to dramatically improve gaming performance.1 AMD CrossFire™ technology ready graphics cards fit practically every budget. With the flexibility to combine two, three or four GPUs, AMD CrossFire™ technology is the perfect solution for those who demand extreme performance.
Introducing AMD LiquidVR
LiquidVR™ is an AMD initiative dedicated to making VR as comfortable and realistic as possible by creating and maintaining what’s known as “presence” — a state of immersive awareness where situations, objects, or characters within the virtual world seem “real.” Guided by close collaboration with key technology partners in the ecosystem, LiquidVR™ uses AMD’s GPU software and hardware sub-systems to tackle the common issues and pitfalls of achieving presence, such as reducing motion-to-photon latency to less than 10 milliseconds. This is a crucial step in addressing the common discomforts, such as motion sickness, that may occur when you turn your head in a virtual world and it takes even a few milliseconds too long for a new perspective to be shown.
Your games now sound as good as they look
The expectations of gamers have never been higher. Graphics quality and processing speed have advanced rapidly, and the games of today are light years ahead of those from just a few years ago. But advancements in game audio have been more sporadic and less widely adopted.
Sound is a critically important part of the immersive experience for gamers and sound engineers are eager to advance their art, but they haven’t enjoyed the same kind of attention that continually drives graphics improvements. Until now.
What it means for gamers
By leveraging AMD TrueAudio technology, game developers now have the ability to recreate acoustic environments with incredible fidelity, and to bring them to every gamer. With AMD technology inside all the most popular “next-generation” gaming platforms, including the PC, gamers across the entire industry will finally enjoy the best audio today’s technology can offer.
Enhanced Unified Video Decoder 3 (UVD 3)
Watch the hottest Blu-ray movies or other HD content at full 1080p (and beyond !) display resolution. Enjoy a feature rich video experience with enhanced Unified Video Decoder 3 (UVD 3), offloading the bulk of the video decoding tasks from the CPU to the GPU allowing for a cooler, quieter and more balanced system.
Our benchmarks show that the Sapphire R9 290 Vapor-X OC is a very quick edition of the R9 290, as it's able to take on both the R9 290X and GTX 780, meaning that the price premium it carries isn't so bad after all. Its ability to exceed the performance of even the GTX Titan Black when overclocked is also very impressive
All of the Sapphire Tri-X cards have performed great and Sapphire only packed in more features with the Vapor-X. The addition of the vapor chamber improved cooling even more than the standard Tri-X cooler and that allowed them to bump up the performance slightly. In testing the Vapor-X R9 290 topped most of our charts and proved that it could push all of the games tested at 1440p
SAPPHIRE’s innovative Vapor-X cooling technology truly does wonders. As demonstrated, the overclocking capacity is great PCWizKid's Editor's Choice Awardthanks to the design and its capability to keep temperatures low. While the SAPPHIRE R9 290 Vapor-X on its own by default is already a high perfomaning graphics card with no need of overclocking, you can appreciate how quality and performance do pay off in return.
Backstopping those frequencies is Sapphire’s legendary vapor chamber technology and its purpose-built Vapor-X heatsink. With it, the R9 290’s temperatures remain well in check, clock speeds are balanced and acoustics are among the quietest we’ve seen. The Intelligent Fan Control also brings something unique to the table by either sacrificing idle temperatures for the ultimate low noise solution or keeping RPMs up on all fans for a more balanced approach. We preferred IFC enabled since all fans engage the second the card detects a continual GPU load so the maximum temperatures between the two modes ended up being identical.
The Sapphire Vapor-X R9 290 is factory overclocked from the reference configuration of 947MHz to 1030MHz which will help it perform better than reference R9 290′s. However, the overclocking doesn’t stop there, we were able to get an additional 10% performance by doing a very simple overclock using Sapphire TriXX software. With an overclock of 1135MHz it appears to perform closer to a stock 290X but for less money.
The Sapphire R9 290 Vapor-X OC is the star of the show today. We feel the R9 290 makes more sense than the more expensive R9 290X. With the amount of overclocking headroom available on this Sapphire card, it is straightforward enough to outperform the fastest overclocked GTX780 Ti solutions, nevermind a reference R9 290X.
The SAPPHIRE R9 290 Vapor-X OC features several of the company’s industry-leading technologies and a factory overclock to deliver best in class performance with very low noise.