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MSI GTX 760 HAWK

A Closer Look at the MSI GTX 760 HAWK

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Here the HAWK series employs the Stealth bomber as an insignia for the GTX 760 HAWK’s ability to knock out the competitions GTX 760 model cards. Overall the shelf appeal is nice here and the front is relatively non cluttered with the HAWK naming taking most of the space and very few icons or marketing actually taking the front space.

The rear is another story as it is packed with as much data as possible for supported features or specs.

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The MSI GTX 760 HAWK comes with a plethora of accessories from the quick start guide and install DVD up to the DVI>VGA Adapter and V-Checkpoint  cables. The the dual 6 pin to 8 pin PCIe adapters allow for hookup of this powerful card to even a PSU without the 8 pin PCIe connections. How ever be sure you are using a good supply with a solid rating and plenty of power so that you can rest assured you are getting the best possible performance from your graphics card.

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The card laid out is quite impressive as the cooler is kept at dual slot which means 3 way SLI configurations are easily possible without encroaching on adjacent slots but the cooler is a bit taller so in a slimmer case this could be an issue. However, for most users buying a card of this level there should be no case fitment issues.

The rear of the card is mostly veiled with the HAWK edition backplate which covers about 80% of the rear of the PCB and helps stiffen the card overall for a more stable running and cooler card.

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The display connectivity is about standard for what we have seen on the Kepler based lineup

  • 2x DVI
  • 1x HDMI
  • 1x Displayport

This all digital connector arrangement allows for maxing out the GPU with up to 4 displays and even a surround plus accessory display array should the need arise.

 

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Here you see that the custom PCB MSI GTX 760 HAWK offers dual 8 Pin PCIe connectors for some serious power capability, This is a bit on the extreme side but being that the card is designed with a LN2 BIOS I can only assume it is supremely overbuilt to make sure that under the more extreme loading scenarios this VRM is ready to pack a punch.

The Dual SLI fingers are in place ready to run up to a 3 Way SLI configuration should you find a usage, game or benchmark for such a level of graphics power.

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And here after popping the top we get a nice look at the stripped down cooler and the massive contact plate for the GPU. The massive heatpipes definitely are designed for some serious heat transfer and I don’t think this card will have any problem pushing some serious clocks. Looking back to the card you see the main cooler plate/frame which acts as a dual piece heatsink and backplate for the memory and VRM while also pulling double duty making the PCB much more solid for a overall stronger card.

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And here after popping the top you can see the memory employed is Hynix Model  which are 6GHz rated ICs which should be more than enough to feed the GTX 760 model GPU.

Also you can see here the custom VRM composed of the special Military Grade chokes and components which means this card should be ready for a serious beating from some long term gaming sessions or even LN2 benchmarking.

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Here you can see first up the Dip switch used to switch between the standard performance OC VBios and the high end LN2 no hold barred VBios. With a simple toggle before booting up you can enable much higher performance capability but be cautious to only use this with far superior cooling as key protections are disabled in the LN2 mode so the cards ability to protect itself can be altered or removed entirely causing damage to the card with insufficient cooling in place.

The V-checkpoints can be seen at the cards edge here and with the connection of the supplied leads you get full access to real time voltage monitoring for the card which enables much better control during benchmarking scenarios.

MSI GeForce GTX 760 HAWK MSI with the introduction of the Gaming series set a whole new category for the MSI brand in the marketplace and a very necessary one at that. However there is still a gap to fill when it comes to extreme performance and that is where the GTX 760 HAWK that we are looking at today comes in. Must like the bigger brother "Lightning" model cards the hawk series is the mainstream performance equivalent for top end OC board offerings. Now with the GTX 760 is uses a GK104…

Review Overview

Performance - 10
Value - 8.5
Quality - 9
Features - 9.5
Innovation - 9

9.2

Summary : The MSi GTX 760 HAWK offers Extreme Overclocking class features on a super strong design. For this it earns the Bjorn3D Golden Bear Award

9
  • Adam Gray

    Due to an incoming monetary benefit coming my way in the relative near future, I’ve been looking forward to upgrading from my MSI GeForce 460 GTX 1GB card. The card’s not dead nor close to it. I just want more performance that’s not a SLI solution seeing as not all games support SLI. My 750W PSU should be able to handle the MSI GeForce 760 GTX Hawk well. Sure the $290 price tag is a tad steep, but for the reliability I’ve long seen in my current MSI card, I’m willing to pay the little extra for legitimate additional reliablity. I’m not really into OCing so that part of the author’s article doesn’t really interest me. It’s the rest of the article that interests me greatly. Thanks, Shannon Robb for a well written article on this card. Since my incoming money isn’t a vast amount, but will allow me to upgrade my main computer’s graphics card and additional RAM only, I’m glad there are people who’ll actually pay attention to those of us who are in the “middle of the road” gaming crowd.

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