As a PC hardware enthusiast I get super excited when new technologies launch and let’s face it Turing was pretty damn cool. At launch NVIDIA announced the entire upper lineup with a very surprising pricetag making the RTX 2080 Ti a “pay to play” GPU. Because of this the downmarket RTX 2080 has some huge shoes to fill and is why the ZOTAC AMP Extreme is such an attractive card.
In this review we looked at the Zotac RTX 2080 AMP Extreme graphics card. This is the highest end card Zotac offers using the RTX 2080 and is built to perform. Out of the box the card comes factory overclocked (hot clocked) at 1905Mhz making it one of the fastest cards on the market and with the Firestorm utility you can push the card even further. The Turing architecture features a new Boost technology and with it this card was easily able to run 2025Mhz without any manual intervention. In fact manual overclocking wasn’t all that beneficial proving that the card will run 2100Mhz on air which in the grand scheme of things isn’t all that much.
The card features and overabundance of cool features including an oversized triple fan cooler that takes up two and a half PCI Express slots. In terms of height the card is taller than most to accommodate the oversized 20-Phase VRM and dedicated VRM cooler. A Power Boost capacitor can be found on the back side of the AMP Extreme and is designed to store and deliver higher current loads so to reduce power ripples. These ripples can impact stability, especially when overclocked.
Speaking of performance I was rather amazed at how well the card performed. Out of the box I was greeted with a very silent running video card that never really spun up beyond a whisper despite repeated 3DMark benchmark runs. This is due to the oversized IceStorm 2.0 cooler that effectively splits the GPU load across the entire radiator and prevents the fans from spinning up too soon. The card does get warm and much to my surprise the fan profiles were defaulting to silent mode when an overclocking profile is engaged. During the overclocking test I did configure a manual fan profile.
RGB LEDs are a HUGE part of the AMP Extreme and you will find a total of four zones on the card. The first is the logo zone allowing you to change the logo color. The remaining zones act as RGB LED strips and will synchronize with each other or you can configure them independent. As an additional feature the modes are split between the activity of the card meaning that you can program an idle RGB profile and a separate one for when the card is active.
Overall I’m really impressed with the Zotac RTX 2080 AMP Extreme. It is built well, has a massive cooler and overclocks effortlessly. Those three things really define an enthusiast video card and I really hope Zotac continues these design styles. My only gripe would be that I feel the two and a half slot cooler is a bit excessive. Of course saying that as a guy who overclocks with LN2 might be a little hypocritical but the non standard size does require some forethought when planning your build. Larger cards put stress on the motherboard and you quickly run out of room when running the GPU vertical.
I was a little upset that the cooler appears restrictive and having to modify the fan profile when overclocking should not have been a required step.
Sweet Spot Performance Enhanced.
Triple Fan Cooler
Solid Cooling Solution
Super Strong Backplate
Power Boost Supercap
Four Zones of Onboard RGB LEDs
Big card! (As if that is a bad thing)
Cooler could flow better
Fans error on being silent over performance.