The Fury X vs. the GTX 980 Ti Revisited with 36 Games including Watch Dogs 2

It’s been at least six months since BTR compared the Fury X versus the GTX 980 Ti and versus the GTX 1070.  It will be interesting to see if there have been any major changes since then.  Has Nvidia neglected Maxwell in favor of Pascal?  This evaluation will revisit 25 games from our last Fury X versus GTX 980 Ti evaluation and we will also include the GTX 1070.   We will use the same games that we benched then, and we will again compare them using the latest drivers, plus we will add 11 newer games including Watch Dogs 2.fxvtiv1070

Both the GTX 980 Ti and the Fury X launched at $650 and have been natural competitors.  However, just over six months ago, Nvidia released the GTX 1080 and the GTX 1070, and both new cards beat the GTX 980 Ti and also beat the Fury X.  Today the Fury X and the GTX 980 Ti are often discounted below $400 which is about where the GTX 1070 is priced, although the GTX 1070 and GTX 1080 are now bundled with Watch Dogs 2.wd2-lst

Our game benchmark suite has changed in the past six months as we always strive to update our tested games to include the latest and most popular titles at the time of writing.  Since then, we have also upgraded from Devil’s Canyon i7-4790K at 4.4GHz to Skylake i7-6700K at 4.4GHz, but we found almost no performance difference between the two platforms.

We mainly want to see how these formerly flagship GPUs stand now in relation to each other by playing the latest games with updated drivers at demanding settings that we usually bench at as well as by replicating the test conditions of our last Fury X vs. GTX 980 vs. GTX 1070 evaluation as well as we can at 3840×2160, 2560×1440, and at 1920×1080.

We will be interested to see how the Fury X stands up to the latest games with its 4GB of vRAM, and if the GTX 1070 is pulling further away from the GTX 980 Ti.  Watch Dogs 2 is vRAM intensive and its recommended specs are pretty steep.watchdogs2-2016-11-30-11-09

Watch Dogs 2 was released a couple of days ago and we are playing the game now.  However, we were able to get a consistent preliminary benchmark.  Nvidia’s GameWorks has allowed the Watch Dogs 2 devs to implement additional features into this game, several of which can be used in AMD cards:

  • Ansel is a new way to capture in-game photography beyond taking simple screen shots. Ansel allows a GeForce gamer to compose shots from any location allowed by the dev, use post-process filters, capture HDR images, and share screenshots in 360 degrees via a smartphone, PC, or VR headset.  Ansel is expected to be added to Watch Dogs 2 in a GeForce driver update.
  • Percentage Closer Soft Shadows (PCSS) are a good way for devs to add more realistic soft shadows to their games. Imitating real life, PCSS shadows progressively soften as the distance from the casting object increases. A further benefit of PCSS are the addition of high-quality shadow filtering techniques that reduce the prominence of shadow aliasing.  We use PCSS in benching our 3 cards since Nvidia’s Hybrid Frustum Traced Shadows (HTTS) – a hybrid of Frustum Traced hard shadows and PCSS filtering for the soft shadows – are only available to Nvidia Pascal video cards.
  • HBAO+ adds more realistic Ambient Occlusion shadowing around objects and surfaces with better visuals and less of a performance hit compared with older real-time AO methods.  We also use HBAO+ for benching our 3 cards.
  • TXAA is an anti-aliasing technique which reduces temporal aliasing (crawling and flickering with the camera in motion) at the expense of blurring the images slightly with a cinematic look overall. TXAA combines high-quality MSAA, post processes, and Nvidia-designed temporal filters.  However, in benching our 3 cards, we use SMAA.

Let’s check out the FuryX versus the GTX 980 Ti and versus the GTX 1070 performance after we look over our test configuration on the next page.

  • Matt321

    “We have no trouble giving our highest recommendation to the GTX 1070 especially now that it is bundled with Watch Dogs 2. ”
    Watch Dogs 2 is spamware though, compared to some Civ 6 offer by AMD.

    • apoppin

      I am having a blast playing Watch Dogs 2 right now. I tend to prefer shooters to strategy games.

      AMD has had good offers. I believe BF1 was bundled with select Radeons. I got a discount instead of the full game with my RX 460 purchase, however.

      • Alexander Yordanov

        Preferring shooters, especially low quality ones (not like STALKER) to strategy games is why gaming is going down these days.

        This thinking damages the art form.

        • efishta

          Dumbest comment in the thread^

          • Alexander Yordanov

            Cept it is true…

    • Convergence87

      Watchdogs 2 has reviewed really well….

      • Alexander Yordanov

        It is a lower quality genre though. Obviously Civ is superior.

        • Convergence87

          Sarcasm?

  • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

    Ok but the Saphire Fury is currently $239 on Newegg. Can you really compete against that!? Probably not.

    • SteelCrysis

      That’s after rebate. Without the rebate, it’s $260.

      • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

        And what are you complaining about?

        • SteelCrysis

          Just pointing out how misleading you are. You’re the one who is complaining about this article, not me. Psychological projection at its finest.

          • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

            How is that Misleading? Can you buy a Sapphire R9 Fury for $239 right now? Most people consider the price of rebate when discussing a product’s final price. Variety in stock? What’s that even have to do with anything? Have you even looked at the card? It’s fantastic and unbeatable for the price. Instead you come here and complain that it’s not $239 before the $20 rebate and that all the fury cards aren’t $239? You’re desperation at a counter argument is astounding.

          • SteelCrysis

            “How is that Misleading? Can you buy a Sapphire R9 Fury for $239 right now?”
            It is misleading, because you have to pay the before-rebate price before you can use the rebate.

            “Most people consider the price of rebate when discussing a product’s final price.”
            Do they think the earth’s flat too?

            “Variety in stock? What’s that even have to do with anything?”
            Everything. It’s a sign of popularity and alternatives.

            “Have you even looked at the card?”
            What’s that even have to do with anything?

            “It’s fantastic and unbeatable for the price.”
            Any GTX 1060 can approach its performance at less than half the power draw, undercut its price, and achieve far better overclocking:
            https://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Sapphire/R9_Fury_Tri-X_OC/33.html
            “Actual 3D performance gained from overclocking is 4.5%.”
            https://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/MSI/GTX_1060_Gaming_X_3_GB/29.html
            “Actual 3D performance gained from overclocking is 14.5%.”

            “Instead you come here and complain that it’s not $239 before the $20 rebate and that all the fury cards aren’t $239?”
            Well guess what? They aren’t.

            “You’re desperation at a counter argument is astounding.”
            Psychological projection at its finest. And it’s “Your” not “You’re”. Learn the difference.

            Poppin, ban this AMD shill.

          • Jill Valentine

            AMD shill? Lmao all he did was mention a good price of a video card & you get butthurt over it, fucking spastic

          • SteelCrysis

            You’re one of them too.

          • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

            Troll alert.

          • Allan Nichols

            I own a 1070, 970, and two 660ti’s and I agree %100 with Jill and disqus you are a butthurt POS!

          • SteelCrysis

            AMD shill who only owns AMD hardware detected.

          • Allan Nichols

            Get ready to eat thy word douce! I love priving fanatical foaming at the mouth tools like you wrong! Check the oictures dickhead and eat it the screen clearly shows this rig is running a GTX 970 andvthe other pic shiws an EVGA card a GTX 970 Through the window of my NZXT Phantom.

            https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/6cac4110d8bfab6156a0f869b6af33f526bf5f80d97b4d3e700e7720ca1e0b23.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/72d2ff3ffe55ef2e19899727513489b20f9e57b069f88ee86981afe267e49750.jpg

          • SteelCrysis

            Begone, troll, with your images that you took from someone else.

          • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

            Once i read that the GTX 1060 beats the AMD R9 Fury I decided this wasn’t worth my time. You’re obviously out of the loop. The Fury performs somewhere between a GTX 1060 and GTX 1070. It even matches the 1070 in some rounds (such as most games at 1440p like Battlefield 1). So frankly you have no idea what you’re saying. The bottom line is for $239 AFTER REBATE (happy?) the fury is a great deal and though to beat when considering price/performance.

          • SteelCrysis

            “Once i read that the GTX 1060 beats the AMD R9 Fury I decided this wasn’t worth my time.”
            I never said any such thing. Please read my comment again.

            “You’re obviously out of the loop.”
            Psychological projection at its finest.

            “The Fury performs somewhere between a GTX 1060 and GTX 1070.”
            And the 1060 undercuts it on price and price/performance: https://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Zotac/GeForce_GTX_1060_Mini_3_GB/31.html

            “It even matches the 1070 in some rounds (such as most games at 1440p like Battlefield 1).”
            BS:
            https://tpucdn.com/reviews/MSI/GTX_1070_Gaming_Z/images/perfrel_2560_1440.png

            “So frankly you have no idea what you’re saying.”
            Psychological projection at its finest.

            “The bottom line is for $239 AFTER REBATE (happy?)”
            Wrong. The bottom line is for $260 BEFORE REBATE (happy? Of course not, you’re never happy when confronted with the truth).

            “the fury is a great deal and though to beat when considering price/performance.”
            BS, 1060 3GB beats it across the board, 1060 6GB still beats it: https://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Zotac/GeForce_GTX_1060_Mini_3_GB/31.html

          • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

            lol are you looking at the same chart? the R9 Fury is between the GTX 1060 and GTX 1070 just like I said.

          • SteelCrysis

            Way to miss what I was responding to, dumbass. It says that the Fury and Fury X are undercut at 1440p by the 1070. You were the one saying “It [the Fury] even matches the 1070 in some rounds (such as most games at 1440p like Battlefield 1).”

          • Nick

            It’s within margin of error on bf4 against the 1070 if you know what that means.

          • SteelCrysis

            Why don’t you post some proof? Oh wait, you can’t. XD

          • Alexander Yordanov

            Are you seriously suggesting a GTX 1060 3GB?
            That is not PCMR, that is mediocrity… 1060 6 GB or 1050 Ti. Ignore the one in between those two.

          • Allan Nichols

            Man you are the misleading fanboi! You ignore the FACT the GTX 980ti is selling for OVER 500 if you can even find one. So again his premise %100 correct the GTX 980ti is in FACT an overpriced bogus pice of trash at this point! You are really amazing and mislead by failing to mention even in NVIDA’s own line the 980ti is an overpriced POS when compared to the $400 GTX 1070 which beats the Fury and the 980ti. If you were going to make a legitimate argument to not buy one of the MANY Fury and Fury X cards available on Amazon anf go with Nvidia the GTX 1070 is that argument!

            It’s exactly why I bought a GTX 1070 yet had seriously considered the Nitro Fury which is currently $259 on Amazon or the XFX Fury X which is currently $319 on Amazon both with $20 rebates!

          • SteelCrysis

            “Man you are the misleading fanboi! You ignore the FACT the GTX 980ti is selling for OVER 500 if you can even find one.”
            Psychological projection at its finest. And this article is for current owners of 980 Tis.

            “So again his premise %100 correct the GTX 980ti is in FACT an overpriced bogus pice of trash at this point! You are really amazing and mislead by failing to mention even in NVIDA’s own line the 980ti is an overpriced POS when compared to the $400 GTX
            1070 which beats the Fury and the 980ti. If you were going to make a legitimate argument to not buy one of the MANY Fury and Fury X cards available on Amazon anf go with Nvidia the GTX 1070 is that argument!”
            See above.

            “It’s exactly why I bought a GTX 1070 yet had seriously considered the Nitro Fury which is currently $259 on Amazon or the XFX Fury X which is currently $319 on Amazon both with $20 rebates!”
            Who are you kidding? The only GPUs you get are the ones you get from AMD.

          • Allan Nichols

            Steel you keep accusing everone of the same thing which is a mark of low IQ. To make it worse your usage of that term is flat our wrong. You failed to miss my whole point that I bought a GTX 1070 and if I had $600 to spend which is what the GTX 980ti costs I WOULD BUY A GTX 1080!!!!!

            You are making a vitual ass of youself by calling me an AMD fanboy when anyone who read my post ckearly undestads this is not true. You fail to comprehend I agree with you that NVIDA is generally the way to go and has been for a while. I have not owned AMD since my HD 6950 which I ended up regretting not buying a 560 ti which overclocked like hell. What do you want me to do shout AMD sucks NVIDA rules from my rooftop?

            I simply stated the FACT that for $600 new a 980ti is a piece of shit and a waste of money for many reasons.

            #1 A 980 ti is only marginallly better than aFury or Fury X and costs $340 to $280 MORE its clearly a stupid choice unless you find some mega deal at half off.

            #2 A GTX 1070 handily beats a 980ti and costs $200 less at $400 the GTX 1070 is currently the best overall card when considering value and you still want top tier performance.

            #3 If you are determined to spend $600 you can have TWO fury’s or fury x’s for the price of ONE 980ti.

            #4 If you are going to spend $600 dont be an arse buy a GTX 1080 which is currently the most powerful card next to thw $1000+ Titan.

            The GTX 1070 is clearly is the best value for 1440p and 4k gaming. The ony cards above offer diminishing returns per $ spent over the 1070 and only make sense if you have money to burn and need the absolute best.

            So stick that in your pupe and smoke it you fanboi trash douce bag!

          • SteelCrysis

            “Steel you keep accusing everone of the same thing which is a mark of low IQ. To make it worse your usage of that term is flat our wrong. You failed to miss my whole point that I bought a GTX 1070 and if I had $600 to spend which is what the GTX 980ti costs I WOULD BUY A GTX 1080!!!!!”
            Which is why you’ve never mentioned the 1080 until this comment.

            “You are making a vitual ass of youself by calling me an AMD fanboy when anyone who read my post ckearly undestads this is not true. You fail to comprehend I agree with you that NVIDA is generally the way to go and has been for a while. I have not owned AMD since my HD 6950 which I ended up regretting not buying a 560 ti which overclocked like hell. What do you want me to do shout AMD sucks NVIDA rules from my rooftop?”
            You are an AMD fanboy. “And yet it moves.”

            “I simply stated the FACT that for $600 new a 980ti is a piece of shit and a waste of money for many reasons.”
            Nope. You also shilled for AMD.

            “#1 A 980 ti is only marginallly better than aFury or Fury X and costs $340 to $280 MORE its clearly a stupid choice unless you find some mega deal at half off.”
            Read this sentence: This article is for current owners of the 980 Ti.

            “#2 A GTX 1070 handily beats a 980ti and costs $200 less at $400 the GTX 1070 is currently the best overall card when considering value and you still want top tier performance.”
            See above.

            “#3 If you are determined to spend $600 you can have TWO fury’s or fury x’s for the price of ONE 980ti.”
            And be limited by 4 GB VRAM.

            “#4 If you are going to spend $600 dont be an arse buy a GTX 1080 which is currently the most powerful card next to thw $1000+ Titan.”
            Irrelevant.

            “The GTX 1070 is clearly is the best value for 1440p and 4k gaming. The ony cards above offer diminishing returns per $ spent over the 1070 and only make sense if you have money to burn and need the absolute best.”
            You don’t believe that, or else you wouldn’t be shilling for the Fury line.

            “So stick that in your pupe and smoke it you fanboi trash douce bag!”
            I think the name calling calls for moderator action.

          • Diglo1

            I don’t want to brag here, but I just bought Sapphire r9 Fury Nitro Tri-X OC for 260$ and since GTX 1070 “any” cost around 400$ the Fury was better buy. Yes you can say it consumes much more power and yes it does, but in my household that is not gonna affect power bill one bit. Also looking at the newest benchmarks from TechPowerUP which is Titan X Pascal we can see that at 1440p r9 Fury is around 79% of gtx 1070 and that does not include the Crimson drivers update which brought 5-10% more performance to all GCN AMD cards which brings r9 Fury currently to near 85% range of gtx 1070.
            Now 15% performance difference vs 35% price difference or even 40% if rebated makes Fury better bang for a buck looking at those numbers.
            Now 4gb limit might become problem, but since Fury is designed to direct stream frames and is capable of it to some extent with 512gb/s buss I don’t see frame buffer and it’s economy being an issue.
            Now both cards are overclockable though GTX 1070 has the edge, but mind I tell you that Fury can sometimes unlock it’s not used cores though it’s lottery if you can do this at all, but it can close the gap quite a bit.
            Now if you want bare card and don’t want to try flashing new bioses or overclocking, then Fury is still better bang for a buck, but 15% performance difference doesn’t make 1440p from unplayable to playable. If we keep 40fps as playable min then 1070 should get 46 fps which is not that much considering you pay 140-160$ more for 1070.
            Now r9 Fury is a power hungry card, but as for the performance that’s the only bad thing you can find from that card.
            Also if Vulkan really catches future games like Doom did then Fury matches 1070 though this is not guaranteed.

            Now both gtx 1060 6gb and rx 480 8gb models can reach r9 fury “stock” level of performance with heavy overclocking which most cards are not capable of with air cooling which means that you would need to buy watercooled variant of those cards and it will cost much more then 240$. With large are cooler like Sapphire tri-x you can easily match water coolers like Accelero Hybrid III 140s which makes Fury again better buy.

            Anyways if you bought r9 Fury 240/260$ you had your self a deal.

          • swollenblueballs

            I personally found a EVGA 980 Ti SC+ FTW for $299 shipped and I’m comparing it to the $299 XFX Fury X (post rebate) on Amazon right now. I have a FreeSync monitor so I get that benefit from Fury X but with Vega coming out it seems like going with the 980 Ti is better until I can sell it and pick up a Vega card after prices drop. Would you say that 980 Ti has more resale value than an XFX Fury X?

          • Allan Nichols

            Thats a rare and great deal congrats to you I saw a few great deals like that over B Friday on B stock at Evga’s website. You make a valid point and If both cards are = meaning new, used, refurb and the same price I go NVIDA hands down.

            The only problem is few can find that deal like that. In FACT there are NO deals like that as we speak and I just checked Amazon

            Its even worse than I mentioned and currently EVERY new GTX 980ti is around $600 with some even more, one POS is even listing at over $700.

            So my comment to the fanboi above is %100 correct that at $500 or $600 the GTX 980ti is a horrible choice and a Fury X for 319 and 299 after rebate. or a Fury for 259 and 239 after rebate is much better choice.

            So its a fact that currently you can buy TWO Nitro Fury’s for the price of ONE GTX 908ti on Amazon.

    • Cooe

      Was really close to ordering one of those till I decided to check my local paper’s (KSL.com, from SLC, Utah) online classifieds for kicks and giggles beforehand only to find a barely used XFX AMD R9 Fury X with the box, all the manuals, driver CD, etc… for just $275!!!!…. I couldn’t believe it either. (Was just in a another local PC nerd’s wife’s WoW and Facebook PC, who somehow only just now realized a $650 MSRP GPU is probably a little overkill for that (lol just a little, but because of this, it’s never be OC’d and barely used heavily at all in its’ life so far, so there’s that)). Picked it up and installed it yesterday, and I couldn’t be happier!!! Especially at that price!!!!! Practically the same as a nice quality GTX 1060 6GB, expect the fact it’s FAR FAR closer to the GTX 1070 than to that powerwise. Runs so much cooler and quieter than the massive super custom PowerColor PCS+ AMD R9 290X 4GB it replaced it’s kinda mind-blowing. All in all, I’m one satisfied customer. The Fury X’s built in AIO closed loop cooler is just about by favorite feature of every GPU I’ve ever owned! (and there’s a lot of them, this is 1st one that’s liquid-cooled though).

      • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

        That’s a GREAT price Cooe, Those that own a Fury or Fury X only speak it’s praise!

  • Augusto Pinochet

    You ain’t fooling no one with this tricks, put project cars in there to influence the overall score, and ignore mantle in games that do support it.

    • apoppin

      And you aren’t fooling anyone either. ProjectCars is only one of 36 games. Mantle? Name the games that support Mantle please.

      • Augusto Pinochet

        ProjectCars is one of 36 games that influences the over all score, AMD has no game like that in their partnership that gimps Nvidia’s performance, at least not at these levels.

        “Name the games that support Mantle please.”
        Dragon Age Inquisition.

        • enmass90

          Seriously? Mantle is a dead gaming API… it’s basically Vulkan now. Vulkan is represented in this article via Doom so there’s your Mantle game right there.

          • Augusto Pinochet

            ” Mantle is a dead gaming API..”
            Just because is no longer supported for future games, does not mean that Dragon Age Inquisition does not have it.
            Beside Mantle is still relevant for me, and others who still play BF4 MP.

          • enmass90

            Mantle is buggy as shit on Dragon Age. I stopped using Mantle in that game because DX11 was an overall better experience. You’re literally grasping at straws here.

          • Augusto Pinochet

            If anyone is grasping at straws here that is you i made my view clear from the first comment, is you who is trying to find pathetic excuses on why Mantle should not be used, when the game even has an in game benchmark tool.

          • John Bain

            I think you’re missing the whole purpose of the article, or articles of this ilk.

            It’s not intended as a guide for people who play the specific titles, it’s a compilation of games across multiple current APIs, showing how performance has improved over time with each GPU/driver. It’s about trends, Mantle as an API can’t trend, it’s no longer being supported by AMD or game developers.

            AMD abandoned Mantle in favour of Vulkan, they regard the effort as a success, it no doubt helped push the whole optimisation debate forward. Feel free to wear your AMD affiliation on your sleeve, but maybe think a little before spewing this kind of vitriol, it embarrasses the rest of us.

          • nvooser

            Even Koduri mentioned that Mantle is being deprecated more than 18 months year ago:

            https://community.amd.com/community/gaming/blog/2015/05/12/on-apis-and-the-future-of-mantle

            Vulkan and DX12 are the substitutes. Mantle is dead. DX12 is over-hyped. Well, that last one is just my opinion 😛

  • John Bain

    Can we get a proper breakdown of how the benchmarks above were performed?

    Also, how many runs per game? What deviation between results is deemed acceptable?

    I noticed that you’re listing two CPU/motherboard setups, one has DDR3 at 2133MHz, the other DDR4 at 3333MHz, but omit explicitly stating which board is paired with which GPU. As the performance of the two processors can vary substantially between games and there’s obvious differences in memory bandwidth/speed it’s troubling to think that you’re changing more than the GPU between tests.

    • apoppin

      Three runs per resolution per game is usual if the results agree. I accept up to a 1-2% deviation between runs and will do more runs if they fall outside of that range.

      As explained in the article, the 25 games that were benchmarked 6 months ago were performed on Devil’s Canyon ([email protected]) then the platform was retired. The 36 games that were tested this week were all performed on Skylake ([email protected]) I also linked to the earlier comparisons that BTR made between the two platforms in the article.

      On each platform, only the video card was changed out – the rest of the HW is identical for testing. It’s all “apples to apples”.

  • Casecutter

    This is exactly why Amazon is dumping the Founders Edition at $340 -AR$40 as these Pascal aren’t that big of deal. Give this was done right before Relive driver release I think having to drop at minimum of 40% more for at most 20% performance in 1440p and not much leg for 4K seems like a odd point to judge a winner at this point