MSI GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Gaming X 11G Review

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Power Consumption

By default, this card's power target is limited to ~290W. That ceiling is almost reached during gaming workloads, and it's hit squarely when we apply a stress test.

Increasing the power target to ~330W using MSI's Afterburner software doesn't improve performance, surprisingly enough. After all, more aggressive GPU Boost frequencies are held back by voltages and temperatures, not power.

Watching the voltage as this card heats up helps explain its behavior. The 1.0625V we measured at the beginning quickly falls to a peak of 1.05V during our gaming loop, but it can also drop even lower when there's a spike in utilization. The same phenomenon occurs during our stress test, though the values dip even further.

Gaming Power Consumption

Let's break the power consumption measurement into separate, higher-resolution lines for each supply rail over a two-minute interval. In spite of our intelligent low-pass filter, occasional spikes remain visible. In places, they reach up to 360W.

The graph corresponding to our current measurement looks just as hectic.

Stress Test Power Consumption

Faced with a more consistent load, power consumption does rise a little. However, the peaks are almost completely eliminated. Instead, we see where GPU Boost kicks in to start limiting power use.

The isolated current readings behave similarly.

Exploring Limits: Maximum Overclock  And The Stress Test

Increasing the power target to its ~330W maximum setting makes the readings more frenetic again. And in addition to the spikes, many dips become visible as well. These are attributable to the limiting control of GPU Boost.

Our current measurements don't reveal any abnormalities in the distribution of load on the supply rails.

Load on the Motherboard Slot

Ever since the launch of AMD's Radeon RX 480, we've been asked to include this metric in our reviews. But MSI's GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Gaming X 11G gives us no reason to be concerned about load on the motherboard's 16-lane PCIe 3.0 slot. In fact, the slot is hardly used at all. Given the power target's adjustable ceiling, we're glad to see MSI leaning hardest on the auxiliary power connectors. This also simplifies the board layout a bit.

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  • Dark Lord of Tech
    Nice Review , thanks again.
  • Scorpionking20
    Thanks. I would love a database of clocks/temps/noise comparing differing cards. I'm looking to sidegrade my 1070's to a 1080ti, and am not in a rush. Noise bugs me a lot more than others, so I try to go for the most quiet solution...but I may be getting a Ryzen with a proper loop too, so if I did that I may get a FE card to throw into the loop...too many options.
  • FormatC
    I've already tested four cards in Germany (four more in pipeline), all other stuff is already in translation. After publishing a few more cards on US site, we will put also a kind of landing/summary page with comparable data ;)

    But I can't spoiler the other reviews results before publishing it ;)
  • zthomas
    Sound and temp is it increased with this card? .. with its own cooler how much cooler? Lots of fans pushing air.. yeah I updated my case.. has three large fans.. one thing i don't get.. I have seen nothing of temperature controls, no meters nothing to indicate temperatures inside the case.. or nothing showing use a peak times during gaming..
  • FormatC
    I can't understand your question, sorry.

    But you can monitor the GPU temperature by yourself with tools like GPU-Z or MSI Afterburner (also with an OSD). Then compare the results with my IR pictures and you have a good point to calculate the other temps by yourself. ;)
  • derekullo
    Wish it had some Titan Xp benchmarks since that's the competition.
  • FormatC
    The problem is:
    Nvidia has never sampled this card.

    I have here a Quadro P6000 and this card is similar. Due the thermal limits of Nvidias stock cooler it is not significant faster. Ok, a little bit, but not a whole universe. And Nvidia will not be amused, if I use a 5000 USD workstation card in gaming benchmarks ;)
  • LwNickV
    I have a question about Overclocking, you mention you need to "max out the voltage slider". But i saw it mentioned in another review that Voltage Slider is locked for this card. So what do you mean with that statement? Is just upping the Power Target to 330 enough to reach 2000 mhz+-?
  • lorfa
    What exactly is at the hotspot?
  • Sam Hain
    19669306 said:
    I have a question about Overclocking, you mention you need to "max out the voltage slider". But i saw it mentioned in another review that Voltage Slider is locked for this card. So what do you mean with that statement? Is just upping the Power Target to 330 enough to reach 2000 mhz+-?

    Tom's was given an unlocked version of MSI AB back in March to test an FE Ti with it and was done using H20 cooling;,4975-2.html They also give instructions on how to manipulate AB to access the voltage settings, until a new(er), unlocked version of AB rolls...

    "We're fortunate enough to have a version of MSI’s Afterburner utility unlocked especially for us. If you want access to similar settings before a new version of Afterburner is released, you can manually add your 1080 Ti to the third-party database using the VDDC_Generic_Detection entry under the VEN_10DE&DEV_1B06&SUBSYS_120F10DE&REV_?? key. A quick search online should turn up plenty of in-depth instructions on how to do this."
    However, you can just move the POWER-LIMIT slider to the max, along with bumping your clock settings. These aftermarket cards will crack past 2K MHz, no problem w/out touching voltage, this card included... It's a CHAMP!