MSI GeForce RTX 3050 GAMING X Video Card Review

MSI GeForce RTX 3050 GAMING X Video Card Front View on Black Background


The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 GPU was launched this past January, on January 26th of 2022.  The GeForce RTX 3050 is an entry-level video card for the desktop PC gaming scene targeted at the 1080p gameplay experience for an MSRP of $249.  In 2022’s topsy-turvy wild wild west pricing, the actual price to purchase is nowhere close to the MSRP. 

As such, manufacturers have also raised retail MSRPs on video cards.  We’ve got one of these higher-priced retail RTX 3050s today that has a pretty high price tag if you can find it.  However, it is geared for enthusiasts and overclockers and is the premium, top-of-the-line product in its class. 

Today we have a retail boxed MSI GeForce RTX 3050 GAMING X 8G video card for review in the GeForce RTX 30 series.  This is MSI’s premium, top-end offering in the GeForce RTX 3050 GPU lineup.  This is as good as it gets from MSI in regards to GeForce RTX 3050 performance.  If we look at PCPartPicker we find it right now (March 2022) priced closer to $400.  So, let’s see if it has what it takes to make this premium price tag worth it in 2022.

GeForce RTX 3050 Specs

Before we dive into the MSI video card, let’s do a quick re-cap on what the GeForce RTX 3050 is.  The GeForce RTX 3050 is based on NVIDIA’s Ampere architecture manufactured on SAMSUNG 8nm FFN.  It has 2,560 CUDA Cores, 48 ROPs, 80 Texture Units, 20 2nd Gen RT Cores, and 80 3rd Gen Tensor Cores.  The boost clock is set at 1777MHz.  It has 8GB of GDDR6 memory at 14GHz on a 128-bit memory bus at 224GB/s of memory bandwidth.  The TGP is rated at 130W. 

A few good things the GeForce RTX 3050 has going for it for a better 1080p gameplay experience is a full 8GB of VRAM framebuffer, a PCIe 4.0 x8 interface, Ray Tracing support, and DLSS support to improve performance at 1080p.  It also has NVIDIA’s latest NVIDIA Encoder and supports all NVIDIA applications associated.


The MSI GeForce RTX 3050 GAMING X 8G video card represents MSI’s highest-end RTX 3050 model.  There is a GAMING non-X model, but it has a lower factory-overclocked boost clock than the “X” model.  The GAMING X model we have has MSI’s highest factory boost clock on the RTX 3050.  Below the GAMING models are the VENTUS and AERO models.  MSI does offer a VENTUS model that uses a simpler cooling solution and shroud but does have a factory overclock version and then a stock reference clocked version.  Finally, the AERO model is a unique ITX-sized RTX 3050 for very small form factor systems so you can have the power of RTX 3050 in a very small build.

The MSI GeForce RTX 3050 GAMING X 8G video card has a factory overclocked boost clock of 1845MHz.  This is up from the reference RTX 3050 clock speed of 1777MHz.  Power consumption is rated at 130W for this video card and a recommended PSU of 550W.  This video card requires a single 8-pin power connector.  It measures 10.9 inches in length, 5.1 inches in width, and 1.9 inches in height.  It supports 3x DisplayPort 1.4a and 1x HDMI 2.1.

The MSI GeForce RTX 3050 GAMING X 8G video card is based on MSI’s TWIN FROZR 8 cooling solution.  The heatpipes use MSI’s Core Pipe machined heat pipes with max contact and spread heat along the full length of the heatsink.  There are Airflow Control guides that guide the air exactly to where it needs for maximum cooling.  The Wave-curved 2.0 fin edges disrupt unwanted airflow harmonics resulting in reduced noise. 

There is a full aluminum backplate on the back of this video card for stability and that uses thermal pads to provide passive cooling.  All components have thermal pads, including memory and VRMs.  The video card uses a custom PCB design with additional fuses built-in for additional layers of protection against electrical damage.  The video card also uses a rigid metal anti-bending strap to keep it strengthened.

With TORX FAN 4.0 the fan blades work in pairs to create higher levels of focused air pressure.  The pairs of fan blades are bound together with an outer ring that focuses airflow.  With Zero Frozr the fans remain off in light load situations.  The fans use durable double-ball bearings with zero noise.

This video card also supports MSI Mystic Light RGB lighting and is compatible with RGB products.  You can utilize MSI Center and MSI Afterburner for overclocking and monitoring.

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Brent Justice
Former managing editor of GPUs at HardOCP for 18 years, Brent Justice has been reviewing computer components since the late 90s, educated in the art and method of the computer hardware review, he brings experience, knowledge, and hands-on testing with a gamer-oriented and hardware enthusiast perspective. You can follow him on Twitter - @Brent_Justice You can sub to his YouTube channel - Justice Gaming You can check out his computer builds on KIT - @BrentJustice

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