Question Considering an MSI RX 5700 Evoke OC - but then I found about cooling issues in the XT version


So, the long and short of it is that, with rebates, there's a great deal on the MSI RX 5700 (non-XT) Evoke OC, though it of course requires the monkeying around with a mail in rebate, etc.

And I almost immediately found issues, and the Gamers Nexus video about the cooling issues with the 5700 XT Evoke OC. And how, if you have one of the ones before the improvements MSI made for the cooling, that MSI has an RMA program where they change out the thermal pads, etc.

So, my questions, which, I know I don't have the greatest Google-Fu, but I haven't been able to find the answers to:
  1. Is the non XT version of the 5700 Evoke OC known to have the same thermal issues?
  2. If so, does MSI have the same RMA program to fix the issue?
  3. If the non-XT has the same trouble, and I purchase one, is there a way I can tell without taking things apart (which I do NOT want to do, and void the warranty, etc) if the card I have has the revised thermal pads or not?
Thanks in advance...


The driver thing, not even with regard to Navi, has always baffled me - as used: Rage 3D, Rage 128, 7250, 9550 and similar ancients, up through HD 4850. As new cards: HD 6670, R7 250E, R9 285, and RX 580 as new , I've never once had a driver issue or even hiccup with AMD/ATI.

Weirdly, the only instability I have ever had was an Nvidia 660Ti in a Dell computer that had an Nvidia NForce motherboard (and Q9550 CPU) in it. Weirder still, it would crash NOT gaming. While gaming it seemed more stable than desktop, web browsing, etc. Strangely enough, the "disable hardware acceleration in the browser" as well as the TdrDelay edit were suggested as fixes for the 660Ti issues.

Nothing worked. I had to put the HD 4850 in, and I was bemused by the irony that I had to use an AMD card in an Nvidia motherboard because the Nvidia card wouldn't work with it.

That 660Ti though, worked just fine in my son's then Sandy Brigde era Dell PC.

That long, rambling bit said, the reports of driver issues specific to Navi have had me concerned, and hesitant. I figure that, worst case, if the card was that much of a headache, I'd send it back (my son's PC would be getting it - he's got an RX 580 currently). Plus, snagging a 5700 for about $10 more than a 5600XT is not without it's appeal.

BUT - if I'm gonna give Navi a try, I'd rather be certain that whatever model I pick doesn't have any hardware/cooling issues (Pre-fix Evoke OC, or the original THICC II's counter-productive shroud, etc)

EDIT: as a side note, the R9 285 had zero problems in my Haswell Dell system, and my son's Skylake Dell system, and the RX 580 had zero issues in that same Skylake Dell, and in his new ChromaTron (see sig) system. That Skylake Dell is now at his mom's house running trouble free with that old 660Ti mentioned earlier.

EDIT2 : 2 weeks ago, my GTX 1080 blanked a few times, 2-3 seconds per blank, when playing the very NON-demanding game Don't Starve. Never happened before, except that one day - I've since updated the drivers, but haven't had a chance to game yet. Thus far, I'm saying the ONLY problem I've ever had was the 660Ti/Nforce board combo, and it was such a strange issue that I call it a bizarre outlier more than anything.

EDIT3: Holy crap, my train of thought wanders, doesn't it?
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I had problems with both my R9 280 and R9 290x until the newer Crimson driver packages came out and CCC was left behind. Then both those cards worked fine, but then I sold the R9 290x planning to move to something newer right away, which didn't happen until I recently pulled the trigger on an RTX 2060 Super which has been flawless so far. The R9 280 still works perfectly though going on five years of use. Drivers were the only issue and I personally have seen a TON of driver issues in the past with ATI/AMD cards especially in the CCC era.

Last year we were seeing a bunch of RX 580 cards dying in clusters, most likely due to driver issues but honestly I still don't know what was causing that and I wasn't the only one seeing it. SR71/DLOT had three RX 580's die on him in a row. I saw at least 25 other cards on this forum within about two weeks time that died after working perfectly fine for several months. Asking around, quite a few other people were seeing it as well, and then it just.....went away. So it pretty much HAD to have been driver issues because it wasn't just one brand of card. It was various cards from different brands. All RX 580.

I'm somewhat of a "get off my lawn" type when it comes to graphics cards, because having installed literally hundreds of them for people over the years including myself, friends, family, customers and such, I am very firmly of the belief that aside from a few nods given to some particularly good sales prices, if you want an AMD card you stick to Sapphire or XFX, but mainly Sapphire, although the track record for XFX on Navi is not particularly promising if you look at the reviews on Gamers Nexus for the THIIC and THIIC II, and EVGA if you're looking at an Nvidia based card, with an occasional ASUS or Zotac in there, but mainly EVGA. There has to be a pretty steep discount, and I mean REALLY good, for me to deviate from Sapphire or EVGA, because they just make a better product that is a lot less apt to have problems than just about anybody else, plus their after the sale customer service is very good.

Well, EVGA is exemplary, and Sapphire is pretty decent, for the most part.

I have bought and used a few MSI cards over the years, for clients and for secondary systems of my own when the price was right, and have never really had problems with them but they have also not lasted nearly as long as these others either. I think MSI makes a good product and has good customer service, but I think they tend to have more quality control issues with both graphics cards and motherboards than most other hardware manufacturers although the track record for the B450 boards has been pretty good, especially the Tomahawk after some initial scattered failures we saw here in clusters. Overall, much better than they used to be, but they've gotten better before and then started backsliding again so who knows. I know their X570 boards weren't nearly as good as their B450 boards, overall.

That was probably not entirely their own fault though. I think X570 was simply a rushed product that should probably have not been pushed to consumers as quickly as it was anyhow. Notice how they've been REALLY taking their time with the B550 chipset boards.
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