Does MSI Make Good Graphics Cards?

When purchasing a specific graphics card, you will quickly realize that there are many versions of that same graphics card coming from different vendors. This can often make choosing a graphics card difficult as when buyers are presented with many options, it can slow down their buying process. The most popular graphics card vendors are MSI, GIGABYTE, ASUS, ZOTAC, EVGA, and there are many more.

These companies are called board partners, and they work closely with NVIDIA and AMD in supplying graphics cards. Board partners will often make their own version of many graphics cards featuring different coolers and designs, but you can also pick up graphics cards straight from NVIDIA and AMD, and these graphics cards are called reference graphics cards.

Answer: MSI is a reliable company that you can rely on when purchasing a graphics card, many of their GPUs will feature superior cooling solutions compared to the reference GPU. Also, the graphics cards feature higher clock speeds and more durable designs, they often feature backplates that can protect the GPU. You will have many options to pick from with MSI, users will usually pick the GPU that looks aesthetically pleasing.

Are MSI Graphics Cards High Quality?

Are MSI Graphics Cards High Quality?

MSI graphics cards are great options when it comes to air cooling, the cooling solutions provided are often superior to those provided by AMD and NVIDIA, so you can expect lower temperatures. When browsing MSI graphics cards, you will find that they have a popular cooling solution called TRI FROZR 2, MSI has researched the best designs when it comes to fans, heatsinks for the best cooling solutions. Also, they’ve taken acoustics into consideration as they understand that loud fans can be quite annoying.

In terms of looks, it can be quite subjective as many will have different opinions on what will look good in their system, but MSI graphics cards tend to look pretty great. Many of their graphics cards come with three fans for optimal cooling, this can look great in certain configurations. Some of their graphics cards will come with backplates which can look great as well as provide passive cooling, the suprim x GPUs tend to come with backplates. Also, RGB is a common aspect with their GPUs, it is fairly customizable so you can make it match your overall aesthetic.

Quality-wise, their graphics cards can be seen as high quality, this is important as GPUs tend to have pretty short lifespans. MSI graphics cards are regarded as being reliable, they don’t use cheap materials, and they often come with impressive cooling solutions. The fans they use are often high quality and feature bearings that can last a very long time as well as operate at a quiet level.

MSI Graphics Card Specs

We’re going to compare MSI graphics cards to the reference graphics card so you can get a general idea on how they compare. In general, the cards by board partners will feature slightly higher boost clock speeds with the same TDP, this means you will often see MSI graphics cards outperform the reference card. But if the specifications were exactly the same, you will see no difference between an MSI 3080 and a reference 3080.

The cards that come pre-overclocked mean you do not have to overclock your graphics card and risk damaging it due to overvolting it. Also, the MSI graphics cards including their higher boost clock speeds should produce lower temperatures compared to reference cards, reference cards usually do not have the best coolers installed, and many gamers will often replace the cooler for a better one.

RTX 3080 Specs

Graphics CardCore CountClock Speed(Boost)TDPRecommended Price
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080(Reference)87041440 MHz(1710 MHz)320W699$USD
MSI RTX 3080 SUPRIM X87041440 MHz(1905 MHz)320W~699$USD
MSI RTX 3080 GAMING Z TRIO87041440 MHz(1830 MHz)320W~699$USD

RX6800XT Specs

Graphics CardCore CountClock Speed(Boost)TDPRecommended Price
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080(Reference)46081825 MHz(2250 MHz)300W649$USD
MSI RX 6800 XT GAMING TRIO46081825 MHz(2250 MHz)300W~649$USD
MSI RX 6800 XT GAMING X TRIO46081850 MHz(2285 MHz)300W~649$USD

Should You Buy Based On Clock Speed?

Aftermarket/Custom graphics cards will usually feature higher clock speeds, in this case it would generate higher frame rates compared to the standard reference card. When you’re purchasing aftermarket GPUs you’re mainly paying for the better cooling solutions, boost clock speeds, and aesthetics. You can easily overclock your reference graphics card to meet the specifications of an aftermarket GPU, just ensure you have great airflow.

Graphics cards with decent boost clock speeds can generate a huge difference in FPS in games, this is because FPS and GPU clock speed scale linearly together. Some graphics cards will have up to a 400MHz increase in boost clock speed, so if you can find an aftermarket card with a significantly higher boost speed, then the FPS differences will be decent.

To have the boost clock speed work effectively, you need effective airflow and temperature control as this is the biggest factor. The graphics card won’t boost unless it sees enough temperature headroom to do so, if your GPU is already hot due to insufficient airflow, then it won’t boost, and may even throttle. Luckily, reference graphics cards usually have lower thermals compared to reference GPUs, so you can expect it to boost more often.

Is MSI Customer Service Good?

Many users have reported that the customer service isn’t that great, this is common with many board partners, the rating for MSI customer service is average. Many users have reported that their problems have no resolution after complaining to customer support, but you may have a different experience. The good news is that the customer service has improved over the years, so you may have a better experience compared to the users in the past.

Conclusion

The verdict is that MSI produces decent graphics cards that can easily beat the reference graphics cards in many aspects such as clock speeds, cooling and aesthetics. Many of the aftermarket MSI graphics cards will feature higher boost clock speeds with the same TDP, so the GPUs are more efficient thanks to the superior cooling solutions. The downside to MSI is that their customer support isn’t very liked, so we recommend picking up your MSI GPU from Amazon or another supplier.