EVGA has finally brought its own take on Nvidia's flagship GTX 1080 to the market. The company's GTX 1080 FTW GAMING ACX 3.0 card boasts a healthy factory overclock, a water cooler, and plenty of monitoring points. All this for a price that's still well under the $500 mark.
The core specs of this GPU largely mirror those you'll find with the reference model. The card uses Nvidia's 16nm Pascal GPU with 8GB of cutting-edge GDDR5X memory running at a frosty 10Gbps. EVGA didn't touch the memory clock, though. The GTX 1080 FTW GAMING uses Nvidia's new NVLink 2.0 technology to support up to four displays. The card also has three DisplayPort 1.4, one HDMI 2.0b, and one DL-DVI-D ports for connectivity.
EVGA's ACX 3.0 cooling solution is something that really stands out on this card, even compared to the company's excellent GTX 1080 Ti FTW3 Hybrid. The hybrid cooler allows the nVidia GPU Boost technology to keep its overclocking headroom at a steady 2,088MHz on air, even during gaming. This is much better than the Founders Edition, which starts thermal-throttling the card at around 1,870MHz on air.
I put the card through its paces using Ubisoft's latest open-world shooter/RPG The Division, which features a beautiful recreation of post-apocalyptic New York. I disabled a few of the game's Nvidia GameWorks features, which are designed to improve performance on certain hardware and help optimize the graphics settings. These features also tend to add a slight overhead that you might not notice on lower-end GPUs.