MSI N760 Hawk Reviewccokeman -
Category: Video Cards
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MSI N760 Hawk Introduction:
Of late MSI has made a real push to put out graphics cards that are capable of pushing overclocking boundaries with a whole slew of capable cards, including the likes of the N780 and N770 Gaming series cards. Pushing down in the product stack we have the N760 Hawk that brings these high end features to the mainstream so that we get high end performance for our mid level dollar. Packed full of features from MSI's own Military Class IV component selection with Super Ferrite Chokes, Dark Solid Capacitors, Hi-C Tantulum filled caps, Dual BIOS, dust removal technology as part of the Twin Frozr IV cooling solution, 6+2 phase power circuit, and a custom eight layer PCB. Add in the higher factory GPU Boost 2.0 clock speeds on the core and you can see that MSI started with a clean sheet approach.
MSI's N760 Hawk is built using NVIDIA's GK104 Kepler core clocked at up to 1176MHz in game and is equipped with 2GB of high speed GDDR5 memory to keep pace with the core. When we first looked at the GTX 760 we know that NVIDIA and its partners had something special when you looked at the performance metrics. Will the N760 Hawk be able to take all the technology and apply it for some truly awe inspiring performance? Let's start with a look at the packaging and see where it leads.
MSI N760 Hawk Closer Look:
The packaging for the N760 Hawk follows previous versions of the Hawk series with a representation of the F-117 Nighthawk on the front panel. Other notables on the front panel are some of the basic specifications of the card as well as an emblem at the top right that shows this is a factory overclocked card. From that you can infer it is going to be faster than the reference cards. The front panel flips open to illustrate many of the MSI-specific feature set including the use of Twin Frozer IV Cooling, Military Class IV component selection, and dust removal technologies. Internally the packaging is black and comes in two components: the accessory box and the N760 Hawk.
MSI's accessory bundle includes the standard items you get with just about every card on the market as well as a unique accessory seen on very few. The standard parts include the users guide, DVI to VGA adapter, driver and utility disk, and 6-pin to 8-pin PCIe power adapters, while the unique parts are three pigtails that plug into the V-Check point ports on the back end of the card. These are used to measure with a multimeter the applied voltages to the core, memory, and PCIe bus. Something seen on very few discrete cards.
MSI's GTX 760 Hawk sports a unique package and is feature packed when compared to some cards on the market in the mainstream segment. Let's dig further into what makes the Hawk something special.