• SPECIFICATIONS
  • Core clock: 1,050MHz
  • Boost clock: 1,317MHz
  • Memory size: 4GB GDDR5
  • Ports: 1x DVI-I, 1x DVI-D, 1x HDMI, 1x DisplayPort 1.2
  • Pros:
  • Great performance
  • Looks cool
  • Cons:
  • Heavy
  • Benchmark Results
  • 3DMark (Fire Strike): 9,891 points
  • 3DMark (Fire Strike Extreme): 6,321 points
  • Unigine Heaven 4.0: 1,640 points

The Gold Standard

We’re not sure what brought about this particular update, but it seems that MSI is trying a number of new things as they recently announced the availability of three different GTX 970 graphics cards. We’ve already reviewed the MSI GTX 970 Gaming 4G not too long ago, but this time around, we’re taking a look at the MSI GTX 970 Gaming 4G Gold Edition.

Chances are, if you’ve already read our MSI GTX 970 Gaming 4G review, you would have already know what this card is already capable of. The addition of the Gold Edition moniker at the back may sound like a marketing gimmick, but MSI has added a few extras on board to make this a pretty worthwhile upgrade if you haven’t yet bought that GTX 970 card.

Besides the cooler, one other major change in MSI's version of the GTX 970 is the ports. MSI swapped in another DVI ports and removed two DisplayPorts

Besides the cooler, one other major change in MSI’s version of the GTX 970 is the ports. MSI swapped in another DVI ports and removed two DisplayPorts

Whilst the ports and such are retained on the Gold Edition, the newer card’s look and feel has seen a bit of a change. The Gold Edition still uses MSI’s Twin Frozr V cooling system with the Zero Frozr feature in which the fan does not kick in until the GPU hits a certain temperature. What has changed however is that MSI uses 100 percent copper heatpipes and heatsink with anti-oxidation treatment to help cool down the GPU better.

The MSI GTX 970 Gold Edition uses copper pipes instead of aluminium to cool down the GPU. Whilst it provides better cooling, the downside is that it makes the GPU quite heavy

The MSI GTX 970 Gold Edition uses copper pipes instead of aluminium to cool down the GPU. Whilst it provides better cooling, the downside is that it makes the GPU quite heavy

This is important due to the fact that the GTX 970 Gold Edition’s gaming overclocking mode numbers are higher than that of the original Gaming 4G’s model. As an example, the original GTX 970 Gaming 4G’s clock speed is set at 1,140MHz, while the Gold Edition’s is at 1,279MHz, and in overclocking terms, it’s a relatively big jump.

Even more impressive is the fact that this card an overclock further to 1,300MHz without too many issues. At this point the 10mm Torx fans will start to whirr quite furiously, but no discernible drop in performance was noticed, and in fact the card pretty much blows the synthetic benchmark scores out of the water.

CHIP CONCLUDE: These MSI GTX 970 Gold Edition cards are limited edition, with only 2,000 units made. Rather than gamers, this is a card that is meant to push the limits of the GTX 970, and to see how far it can be clocked to. Certainly a great GPU to have, but good luck finding one before they’re instantly snapped up.

(previously published in issue December 2014)

MSI GTX 970 Gaming 4G Gold Edition