Corsair’s Hydro GFX GTX 1080 Is Available Now, But Only From Corsair

Corsair’s second graphics card offering, the Hydro GFX GTX 1080, built in collaboration with MSI, is available now, but you won’t find it in retail locations.

In early 2016 we took a long, hard look at Corsair’s first ever graphics card release, the Hydro GFX GTX 980 Ti. The card was built as a collaboration between Corsair and MSI. The two companies combined their respective product lines to build a closed loop-cooled, top-tier graphics card. At the time of our evaluation, we were under the impression that the Hydro GFX line would be a one-off product, so we were hesitant to give the Hydro GFX GTX 980 Ti an award, but its performance was certainly worthy of one.

Corsair and MSI must have been satisfied with the sales numbers of the first Hydro GFX card, because the GPU line has made a return. Corsair was showing off the Hydro GFX GTX 1080 at Computex in June, but the company wasn’t talking specifics at that time. We had no idea what the clock speeds would end up being, and Corsair didn’t reveal a planned release date nor the suggested price. Corsair decided not to slowly trickle out information about the card. Instead, the company stayed quiet about the specifications until today, the same day the card has been released into the wild.

The Corsair Hydro GFX GTX 1080 comes equipped with a Corsair Hydro Series H55 closed loop cooler, which features a 120mm radiator and a pre-installed LED fan. Corsair said that its Hydro Series cooler keeps the GPU up to 50% cooler than the Founder’s Edition vapor chamber cooler does.

With all this extra cooling capacity, it wouldn’t make a lot of sense to release the card with reference clock speeds. Nvidia’s Founder’s Edition GTX 1080 comes from the factory with a base core clock speed of 1,607 MHz and boost clock rated for 1,733M Hz. The Hydro GFX GTX 1080 matches the clock speeds of MSI’s Seahawk X (which is the same as this card) and the Seahawk EK X, which feature the same hardware with an EK Water Blocks full-cover water block.

The card features three different modes: Silent Mode, which sets the clock speed to Nvidia’s baseline; Gaming Mode, which raises the boost clock by nearly 100 MHz, up to 1,822 MHz; and OC Mode, which cranks another 25 MHz out of the boost clock. Given the way Pascal handles its boost clock, we expect the real world numbers will be significantly higher, though.

Corsair’s Hydro GFX GTX 1080 is available now for $749, but it won’t be sold through the usual distribution channels. Corsair will be selling the card through its own webstore only.

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CUDA Cores:2,560
Interface:PCI Express 3.0 x16
Boost / Base Core Clock:1,847 MHz / 1,708 MHz (OC Mode)
Boost / Base Core Clock:1,822 MHz / 1,683 MHz (Gaming Mode)
Boost / Base Core Clock:1,733 MHz / 1,607 MHz (Silent Mode)
Memory Clock:10,108 MHz (OC Mode)
Memory Clock:10,010 MHZ (Gaming Mode)
Memory Clock:10,010 MHz (Silent Mode)
Memory Size:8,192MB
Memory Type:8GB GDDR5X
Memory Bus:256-bit
Outputs:1x HDMI (Version 2.0), 1x HDMI (Version 2.0), 1x DL-DVI-D
Power Connector:8-pin x 1
Power Consumption:180W
Power Supply Requirements:500W or greater
Card Dimension / Weight:270 x 111 x 40 mm / 1,249 g
Cooler Dimension / Weight:151 x 118 x 52 mm/ 1,286 g

 Kevin Carbotte is a contributing writer for Tom's Hardware who primarily covers VR and AR hardware. He has been writing for us for more than four years. 

  • JonDol
    I still wonder why the 120 mm fan instead of usually quieter 140 mm ones ?
  • thundervore
    18426942 said:
    I still wonder why the 120 mm fan instead of usually quieter 140 mm ones ?

    They do it for maximum compatibility. All cases will have a 120mm fan mount somewhere, but some wont have a 140mm mount.

    So to maximize profits they go with what they know will cover all cases across the board.
  • WildCard999
    I would like to see how it stacks up against EVGA's GTX 1080 Hybrid.
  • kawininjazx
    I had to order a water cooler from EVGA none of the cards that came with coolers were in stock, would have saved some effort.
  • damric
    Those are very impressive clock speeds.
  • JackNaylorPE
    Performance purpose of water cooling is to take GPU temps down below the throttling point. The cards don't throttle on air. It also isn't any quieter. In a word .... "Pointless".
  • thundervore
    18428105 said:
    Performance purpose of water cooling is to take GPU temps down below the throttling point. The cards don't throttle on air. It also isn't any quieter. In a word .... "Pointless".

    The only what I can see this coming into play is if the customer have a poorly ventilated case such as one of the cases with noise dampening and the air flow is terrible so the inside temps get too hot.
  • uglyduckling81
    18428105 said:
    Performance purpose of water cooling is to take GPU temps down below the throttling point. The cards don't throttle on air. It also isn't any quieter. In a word .... "Pointless".

    The Nvidia reference cards do throttle though with those blower style coolers.

    The aftermarket ones don't but then they do drop their hot air into the case rather than taking it away like the water cooled ones do.

    I agree there isn't much point to it but it does give the advantages of both reference blower designs and the superior cooling of aftermarket solutions. It's a 2 in 1 deal.
  • Tradesman1
    It's something a little different (GB also has a WC 1080 out), apparently they do OC well, saw a review on this at Guru3D last month. They seem happy with it as they have the same out in the 1070 cards. A positive can be with the pre-OC they set in it, you will be getting a good GPU chip. It's also a small price premium to pay for watercooling a GPU rather than what one might sink into a custom loop on an unknown card. All to often people plan watercooling and lay out all the money before they even have all the hardware only to find they have a so-so CPU or GPU, and hundreds sunk into water cooling, ending up with a rig that gets outperformed by others with same CPU/GPU etc on air.
  • hardarse7
    Finally ordered a GTX 1080... found one actually LESS than full retail price, which was amazing. My plan is to SLI two of them but actually just need to replace an old, failing video card in my HTPC. So that will get the GTX 960 out of my (i7-920)desktop which will get the new GTX 1080, which it needs since I have a 50" samsung 4k TV as my monitor on that machine, and I want to play ROTTR (which came free with the 960) at full 4k glory. Eventually next year I will be upgrading the whole thing to a Kaby lake system, and adding the second GTX 1080. I think it is so stupid to get a TITAN-X for $1200 when you can get two 1080s for $1300 and get way better performance. I'll be locking it down to 60hz to match the TV (ju7100) so I don't need the fastest hotrod 1080 since I will have a pair of them. I got the EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 FTW DT GAMING. Seems like it's a reference card but with a second 8-pin power connector and 215watt TDP (up from 180) I assume to make it more overclockable. I may do that at first but once I get the second card I should be able to rock 60hz with any (SLI-capable) game. Ironically ROTTR wasn't scaling for SLI until recently, now with NINETY FIVE percent scaling! Again, why would anybody buy a TITANX when for similar-ish money you could have 195% better performance?