Overall and Final Verdict

So with this review I set out to see how the MSI GTX 950 Gaming 2G performs and to find out how it compares to the Asus GTX 950 Strix that I tested last week. Well now that I have run through our entire benchmark suite I finally have a better idea of how the cards fall. First though I do want to talk about the card itself. For starters I was surprised that Asus edged out a lead on the GPU clock speeds with their overclock, that said the MSI still had a decent clock speed over the suggested clock speeds from Nvidia. MSI stuck with the same black and bright red theme that they have had on all of their gaming series cards recently. The color combination always looks good and things were helped even more with nice styling on the fan shroud and the sharp MSI logo up on the top edge. I love that MSI isn’t trying to theme out their card to look like an owl like the Asus cards, not that MSI hasn’t done that in the past with dragons though. MSI’s Zero Frozr cooler has two huge fans that end up forcing the card to be considerably larger than it needed to be. To fit them the card goes about an inch above the top of the PCI slot and they added a few inches to the length of the card by extending the PCB as well.

When it came to actual performance the Asus 950 did pull ahead in a good portion of the benchmarks due to its higher clock speed but I was surprised that a lot of the in-game results didn’t really show much of an improvement. In fact the end result in our breakdown between the two cards was spot on. The MSI GTX 950 Gaming 2G performed really well at 1080p, having each game playable or higher. This is different than the R7 370’s where at 1080p a few of the games fall into the unplayable category. The 1440p results were a little on the weak side though due to the limitations of the GTX 950’s 128 bit memory interface and the 2GB frame buffer. Cooling performance on the MSI was great, besting the Asus by a good margin as well as the R7 370’s.

So is the MSI GTX 950 Gaming 2G the card to get when shopping for a budget card? Well I think currently at these prices the GTX 950 is overall a much better value than the R7 370. So I would be shopping for a GTX 950 currently. But the differences between the Asus and MSI make things a little more complicated. For starters the Asus does have a higher clock speed and performance in most cases. The MSI runs quieter as long as the fans aren’t cranked up to 100% though and its cooling performance was great. I also think the MSI is a much better looking card. But if you are limited on space its larger size might be an issue. So would I pick one up? Well yes, I would actually take the better cooling and looks of the MSI and overclock it myself it I needed that extra bit of performance, as long as it fits in your case.

 

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Author Bio
garfi3ld
Author: garfi3ldWebsite: https://lanoc.org
Editor-in-chief
You might call him obsessed or just a hardcore geek. Wes's obsession with gaming hardware and gadgets isn't anything new, he could be found taking things apart even as a child. When not poking around in PC's he can be found playing League of Legends, Awesomenauts, or Civilization 5 or watching a wide variety of TV shows and Movies. A car guy at heart, the same things that draw him into tweaking cars apply when building good looking fast computers. If you are interested in writing for Wes here at LanOC you can reach out to him directly using our contact form.

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garfi3ld replied the topic: #37042 27 Aug 2015 16:00
Today I take a look at a second GTX 950, this time from MSI. So I dig in and see what sets the cards apart and find out how the MSI performs compared to the Asus as well as the R7 370's that I have tested over the last two weeks.

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