When comparing Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1080 Xtreme Waterforce vs EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 FTW GAMING ACX 3.0, the Slant community recommends Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1080 Xtreme Waterforce for most people. In the question“What are the best GTX 1080 cards?” Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1080 Xtreme Waterforce is ranked 7th while EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 FTW GAMING ACX 3.0 is ranked 12th. The most important reason people chose Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1080 Xtreme Waterforce is:
The card's base GPU clock runs at 1784 Mhz and memory clock at 1302 MHz producing 9.134 TFlops of computing power. That's an increase of almost 10% over a reference GTX 1080 card. In the real world it means that at 1440p on max settings DOOM, Far Cry Primal and Battlefield 4 on Gigabyte Xtreme Waterforce averages 140, 84, and 118 fps respectively while a reference card averages, 125, 78, and 110 fps respectively.
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Pro Excellent performance over other custom GTX 1080 cards
The card's base GPU clock runs at 1784 Mhz and memory clock at 1302 MHz producing 9.134 TFlops of computing power. That's an increase of almost 10% over a reference GTX 1080 card.
In the real world it means that at 1440p on max settings DOOM, Far Cry Primal and Battlefield 4 on Gigabyte Xtreme Waterforce averages 140, 84, and 118 fps respectively while a reference card averages, 125, 78, and 110 fps respectively.
Pro Offers extended four years of warranty
Gigabyte is offering an extended Xtreme Care warranty period of four years, which is significantly longer than any other manufacturers offer - typically just one year. In the event of a failure within this period, Gigabyte will repair the card or send you a replacement model. Online registration is required.
Pro The best cooling system ensures no throttling
The Waterforce closed loop cooler on the this Xtreme Gaming card handles heat the best out of any current GTX 1080 graphics cards, and temperatures remain quite low as a result. The idle temperature of the card is about 24° Celsius, which is just barely above room temperature. Even more impressive is the maximum temperature under load: the GPU tops at 50 degrees Celsius, even with these increased clock speeds. For comparison, a reference GTX 1080 Founders Edition has a load temperature of 82° C.
Low temperatures not only benefit longevity of the card, but it also prevents throttling which will improve performance. Throttling occurs when a temperature of at least 80° C has been reached. At that point, the graphics card will slow itself down in order to stay below 80 degrees - effectively sacrificing performance. This never occurs to the Xtreme Gaming card because of the efficiency of the cooling system.
Pro Adjustable RGB lightning looks sweet
The exterior of the Gigabyte GTX 1080 Xtreme Gaming features a lot of RGB lights and you can adjust the color of these lights via Gigabyte's included software package. This allows you to customize the look of the graphics card, which can be useful if your setup is built with a specific color scheme in mind.
Pro Comes with a frontpanel for easier use of virtual reality headsets
The GTX 1080 Xtreme Gaming cards are especially suitable for virtual reality headsets. Some headsets such as the Oculus Rift or the HTC Vive require two HDMI-ports, which aren't always easily accessible on all graphics cards. Included in the packaging is a 5.25" extension bay, with two USB 3.0 ports and a set of HDMI inputs. With this frontpanel, users are no longer required to route their VR headset through the back of the system. The graphics card itself features two HDMI-ports on the opposite site of the usual ports, which allows a quick pass-through to this frontpanel. When using these two specific HDMI ports, two of the three DisplayPort inputs are disabled.
Pro Good value for money
At $649, it's on the cheaper side as far as 1080 graphics cards go. While not really excelling at anything, it has no serious drawbacks either. Making it a good card for people who want a compromise between price and performance.
With a length of 267mm and height of 128mm, the GTX 1080 FTW is one of the most compact 1080 cards available.
Pro Lots of headroom to overclock and tweak
The FTW ACX 3.0 leaves a lot of room for tweaking. You can overclock for up to +147MHz Core and +176MHz Memory before starting to lose on either core or memory speed.
Con Fan can get loud
When at 100% output, the cooling fan on the GTX 1080 Xtreme Waterforce can produce up to 56.4 dB of noise - more than most other graphics cards. This produces a noticeable noise, even if it isn't considered loud (it's just a touch quieter than the average conversation when measured).
Con Liquid cooler uses PET tubing
Because the tubing is made of PET (polyethylene terephthalate - common in plastic water bottles and food containers), the tubing of the enclosed liquid cooler is easier to crack than other materials if the tube is accidentally bent, which could then leak coolant. This isn't likely to occur, but it is one of the risks of liquid cooling.
Con Requires additional 8-pin power connector
In order to provide extra power for the watercooling solution and the higher clock and memory speeds, an additional 8-pin power connector is required, for a total of two. A reference GTX 1080 only requires a single 8-pin connector. This can be an issue with power supplies with limited wattage or if you don't have enough spare 8-pin connectors available.
Con Issues with cooling
Some people have problems with cooling, where the GPU needs a thermal kit from EVGA.