The Gaming X series from MSI is generally a hot seller on etailer websites and…
Best MSI GTX 1060 Black Friday Deals
Given that the GeForce GTX 1060 video card has officially launched, we’re bracing for the onslaught of custom boards created lovingly by Nvidia’s partners. The first inside our hands can be an MSI card using its overclocked and well-cooled GTX 1060 Gaming X 6G ($369.99). Nothing major has changed in the GTX 1060 version from the GeForce GTX 1080 Gaming X 8G board we also reviewed, aside from the tiny graphics-chip heart beating within the card’s metal exoskeleton. Which means this review will be somewhat shorter than if we were examining this specific species for the very first time.
Just looking at the card, you can tell the MSI GeForce GTX 1060 Gaming X 6G ($369.99 at Newegg) includes a lot in common using its big brother. Both cards look just about identical. Both video cards sport a sweet-looking red/black color scheme, together with the company’s Twin Frozr VI dual-fan design with LED highlights. The logo on the edge of the card is RGB-lit and will be customized, however the red LEDs on the fan blades are simply that-red, and only red.
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The card also includes a metal backplate, which includes been a sought-after feature on high-end GPUs for some time now. That sort of plate looks more polished when compared to a bare PCB when you can view your card after installation (you start to see the back of any card a lot more than the front, generally in most windowed PC cases), and it has turned into a feature that separates premium GPUs from the less costly ones. So we’re glad to see MSI kept it because of this midrange GPU. (This MSI GTX 1060 card costs barely half up to its equivalent GTX 1080 card, in the end.)
Overall, the aesthetics because of this generation of cards from MSI are simply just top-notch, inside our opinion. It’s the ideal balance between aggressive and flashy without crossing the border into potentially overdone. (See Zotac’s GeForce GTX 1080 Amp Extreme ( at Amazon Canada) for a card that, while wildly fast, may have gone somewhat too much on the eyeball aspects for a few buyers.)
Now, to what separates the MSI GeForce GTX 1060 Gaming X 6G from the Founders Edition (FE) version of the GTX 1060 made and sold by Nvidia proper. (The GTX 1060 FE, essentially a reference card, is available only via Nvidia.com, for $299 in a “limited edition” which will be sold for provided that there’s demand.) Apart from the totally different cooling apparatus and aesthetic, the MSI card’s biggest change is that it features an eight-pin PCI Express power connector, which can be an uptick from the single six-pin one on the FE card. Regardless of the extra juice, the Gaming X 6G continues to be listed as a 120-watt card, which is equivalent to the Founders Edition version. The Gaming X also includes a six-phase power design, a lot more than the 3+1 design employed by the Founders Edition. Which should enable smoother power delivery for overclocking.
The MSI is a major card, too, much bigger compared to the FE card at 11 inches long versus 9.75 inches…
The width of the cooler is 5 inches (MSI) versus 3.75 inches (Founders Edition). If your personal computer chassis is space-constrained, take heed.
Another big difference-and the one which is expected on a card of the nature-is that it is highly overclocked and overclockable when compared to Founders Edition. You can simply overclock the Founders Edition card, but out of your box it runs at Nvidia’s “base spec” settings, which are 1,506MHz for the bottom clock and 1,708MHz for the utmost boost clock. Retail versions of the Gaming X 6G, however, run at 1,569MHz base and 1,784MHz boost out of your box (equal to MSI’s Gaming mode in its Gaming App software), which is fairly a difference. It is possible to tick that up further to at least one 1,594MHz/1,809MHz, through MSI’s software, via an “OC mode” setting. (The program has Quiet, OC, and Gaming mode settings, with Quiet being the same as the Founders Edition at stock settings.) It’s literal one-click overclocking, as you merely click on the box you want (Gaming, OC, Quiet), and the card runs at those speeds. The main element screen in the program looks like this…
Clock speeds and cooling aside, that is still a GTX 1060 in mind, so many specs remain the same. It has 6GB of 8Gbps GDDR5 memory, though it’s overclocked by 100MHz out of your box. The memory runs on a 192-bit bus, and the card offers 1,280 CUDA cores, along with three DisplayPort connectors, an HDMI port, and a DVI port for all those with older monitors. Also, in the event it requires to be described, this GPU supports all the Pascal tech we’ve discussed before, such as for example Simultaneous Multi Projection (SMP), Ansel, and GPU Boost 3.0. Also, just like the Founders Edition of the GTX 1060, it generally does not support multi-card configurations, a.k.a. Nvidia SLI. (The GTX 1070 and 1080 do support twin-card SLI.)
The Gaming X 6G includes the same program we evaluated inside our overview of the GTX 1080 Gaming X 8G, so we won’t get into it in detail another time. Click to that review to check on it out if you wish a far more detailed discussion, but we’ll provide some screens of it here…
The program package includes MSI’s Dragon Eye function (in order to watch YouTube videos when you are in-game), an onscreen-overlay feature to monitor your GPU, these overclocking tools, and a computer program to change the colour temperature of the display, optimizing it for pursuits like movies and gaming. Overall, it’s excellent software and adds a whole lot of value to the package.