AMD’s “fine wine” revisited – the Fury X vs. the GTX 980 Ti

It’s been nearly two years since BTR last compared the Fury X versus the GTX 980 Ti. AMD’s fans have touted their “fine wine” theory as an advantage; that as a Radeon graphics card ages, the drivers get better over time and its performance goes up.  Since the Fury lineup only has 4GB of HBM memory compared with the GTX 980 Ti’s 6GB of GDDR5, AMD dedicated extra engineers to the task of vRAM optimization.

Both the GTX 980 Ti and the Fury X launched at $650 and they have been natural competitors until NVIDIA released the GTX 1080 and the GTX 1070 where both of the newer cards beat the GTX 980 Ti and also beat the Fury X.  This evaluation will revisit some games from our last Fury X versus GTX 980 Ti evaluation together with many newer ones, and we will compare them using the very latest drivers from AMD and from NVIDIA.

Our game benchmark suite has evolved over the past two years as we always strive to update our games to include the latest and most popular titles including The Crew 2 and Far Cry 5.  Since then, we have also upgraded from an i7-6700K to i7-8700K at 4.7 GHz, but we found almost no performance difference between the two platforms.

We want to see how these formerly flagship GPUs stand now in relation to each other by playing the latest games with updated drivers with the most demanding settings at 3840×2160, 2560×1440, and at 1920×1080 resolutions.

Some of the latest games tend to be vRAM-intensive and it will be interesting to see how the Fury X performs playing the latest games with its 4 GB of vRAM compared with the GTX 980 Ti’s 6 GB.  So let’s check out the Fury X’ versus the GTX 980 Ti’s performance after we look over our test configuration on the next page.