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MSI R9 280 Gaming v PNY GTX760 XLR8 – £185 shootout

We all love to play games! It is likely your dream graphics card will be either a GTX 780 Ti or R9 290X. Not fast enough for you? – then how about AMD’s R9 295X2 or Nvidia’s Titan Z? Be prepared to dig deep into your bank account at £1,100 and £2,300 respectively … yes, it really is enough to make grown men cry. Back in the real world – and if recent correspondence with our readers is anything to go by then many of you wanted to see which hardware offers a better gaming experience under the £200 ‘sweetspot’ – an R9 280 or a GTX760. So with this in mind we went shopping online.
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We opted for two cards we have never reviewed before.

On the Nvidia side of the equation we picked the PNY GTX 760 XLR8,  currently priced at £177.31 inc vat on Scan.

To represent AMD – we selected the MSI R9 280 Gaming Edition, currently priced at £186.82 inc vat on Scan.

Both solutions are very closely priced and well below the £200 budget we set for ourselves in this article. Why only two cards? There is not much point including three or four more R9 280’s or GTX760’s because the performance results will be very close, related to minor changes to the core clock speed. For £180 you aren’t going to get much better than these cards.

We test today with the latest Forceware and Catalyst drivers at both 1080p and 1600p resolutions.

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  • Nick Dew

    Well the R9 280 may perform better over all, there are other reasons to get the Nvidia over the AMD, one of which is the built in streaming to twitch in the Nvidia software, for anyone looking to stream games it’s a big plus as it’s super easy to use. Just food for thought as it’s not always about max performance per dollar.

  • Rasmus

    R9 290 = GTX 780
    R9 280 = GTX 770
    R9 270 = GTX 760
    Sadly, the price does not reflect this (for Nvidia that is). No wonder the 280 won that round – it’s a good card for the price.

  • Karl

    Funny that in my country you can get gigabytes windforce GTX 770 for the same price as R9 280x (from the store not forums or sth).

  • BREC

    Sadly i see almost all pictures say that they use 290 not 280, so ofc it will win.

  • BREC there is No r9 290 in this review, its an R9 280 Gaming.

  • Radosław Greń

    Yep, it is better than my Radeon HD 5450…

  • Garry

    I have this card and it’s a beast you just can’t beat it for the price I run Titanfall everything maxed (maxed AA) on 24″ at 1080p never dropping below 60fps I bought mine for £167 from scan and that deal is on again right now! 3 free games included. Also you get free streaming software for 6 months with it xsplit game caster which is great. Brilliant card.

  • dzeljo sabiji

    i think im in love <3


  • Tushar

    Id like to review this because it looks like a beast, moreover id like to get this because gta V is on its way 🙂

  • Laron Lee

    Would love to review this card… keeping fingers crossed.

  • Bradley King

    I’d love to review one of these!

  • ryan martins

    I have an msi gtx 760 OC and i would love to review and compair these.

  • Ignacio Castillo

    Thank you so much for this amazing opportunity. I would love the chance to review and keep these cards. I would give you a great review. Thank you again

  • Ghalib

    ITS A good card for high gaming i thnk

  • don

    Ilove MSI

  • don

    i want to have this someday 😀

  • joven pareja

    The R9 280 is in-between the high end GPU and the budget friendly r9 270x.. If you are looking for a heavy duty,power kicking GPU the r9 280 would deliver it at your doorstep .
    With its dual fan,overclocking enthusiast would drool on the possibilities this baby can do.
    The r9 280 is a must get GPU for me..if you have the budget go for it.

  • I am currently studying Computer Hardware Servicing and although I am new I know that this video card is surely a one of class just by looking at it the design was really extremely fantastic or should I say a design with sole purpose, I think with this kind of memory type and clock speed you shouldn’t worry about having some game lags on any game and experience high quality gaming experience. I commend this GPU as one of the most leading card today that anyone should have.