As a member of MSI’s expansive Gaming series of cards, the Radeon RX 580 Gaming X+ 8G is a familiar sight.
Under the hood, there are minor refinements in the form of a refreshed Polaris architecture based on a third-generation 14nm FinFET process, higher clock speeds, and more efficient power consumption.
However, overall power consumption is still higher than the previous generation because of the more aggressive clock speeds. This is refiected in the TDP figures, where the Radeon RX 580 has a 185 watt TDP versus the 150 watts for the Radeon RX 480. As a result, you’ll actually need two 8-pin connectors to power the card.
MSI’s Twin Frozr VI cooler keeps the card cool, and it features a nickel-plated copper base plate that connects to 8mm-thick heatpipes to channel heat away from the GPU. The VRMs and GDDR5 memory modules also have additional heat sink shielding placed directly above them.
The dual Torx 2.0 semipassive fans will stop spinning when the card isn’t working that hard, which translates to a temperature threshold of around 60°C.
Above that, the fans will start up, but the good news is that they remain relatively quiet throughout.
In addition, these are double ball bearing fans that should last much longer than their sleeve bearing counterparts.
One point to be wary of is the card’s size. It is fairly large and wide for its performance class, and at 140mm across, is the same width as the MSI GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Gaming X. It also requires a 2.5-slot allowance and measures 50mm thick, so you’ll want to double check if you have enough room, especially if you have a particularly small chassis.
A metal back plate provides extra structural reinforcement, a welcome addition considering the size and weight of the card.
Overall, the Radeon RX 580 only nets you a small jump over the Radeon RX 480, but it is an exceedingly capable midrange card that will make a great upgrade if you own something more than two years old. Most of the time, it even edges out the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 with faster memory, and is capable of running any game today at 1080p.