• SPECIFICATIONS
  • GPU: NVIDIA GTX 970
  • Memory: 4GB GDDR5
  • Ports: DVI x2, HDMI x1, DisplayPort x1
  • Slot Size: Double
  • Pros:
  • Performance still holds up to the new cards
  • Cons:
  • None
  • Benchmark Results
  • 3DMark FireStrike: 11,582 points
  • 3DMark FireStrike (Extreme): 5,121 points
  • 3DMark FireStrike (Ultra): 2,316 points

A Tiger In Your PC

Whilst all the graphics card hype now surrounds the likes of NVIDIA’s GTX 10XX series and the new AMD’s Radeon RX 480, the GTX 970 series of cards is now likely the go-to card for an inexpensive high-end 1080p gaming option, as it still holds its own against the new kids on the block. The MSI GTX 970 Tiger may just be what you’re looking for.

The GTX 970 Tiger sports MSI’s cool Armor 2X cooling system, which sports aluminium fins, copper heatpipes and two black-and-white 10mm fans which help dissipate heat from the HSF. At the back, the 970 Tiger features two DVI ports, one HDMI port and one DisplayPort for video output. To power the card, two six-pin PCIe power plugs are required.

The 970 Tiger comes out of the box with similar clock speeds as that of the reference design, but thanks to the MSI Afterburner software, you can still overclock the core clock a fair bit to get the most out of your GPU.

As far as overclocking is concerned, we were able to push the base clock to about 1,100MHz without a problem. Throughout our tests, the GTX 970 Tiger was still able to play all the latest games, like Doom, Rise of The Tomb Raider and Grand Theft Auto V at the highest settings at 1080p. In some cases, like Shadow of Mordor, we’re even able to push the card to play at 1440p, with adjustments in some settings.

The great thing of course is that throughout most of these tests, the fans were keeping the card’s temperature under control, but it’s only when the action gets a bit heated do the fans start becoming somewhat audible. That said, the noise wasn’t all too loud, and we were still able to game in relative silence as the sounds that can be heard were mostly ones that are being output by the speakers.

One of our favourite things about the card, besides its performance and features, is how easily it blends in with the multitude of black and white motherboards that are coming out lately. Modders and system builders would definitely want to consider.

CHIP CONCLUDE: No doubt the GTX 10XX and RX 480 cards are the talk of town right now, but the GTX 970 is still a great choice if the aforementioned cards are still difficult to find in stores right now.

(previously published in issue August 2016)

MSI GeForce GTX 970 Tiger