Most first-tier graphics card manufacturers these days have liquid-cooled versions of their top-end cards. MSI, Gigabyte, and Asus all offer GTX 1080 cards with an AIO liquid cooler strapped around them. Gigabyte is now trying a different tack: a GTX 1080 that comes from the factory with a waterblock installed, ready to be slipped into existing liquid-cooling loops. Say hi to the "GeForce GTX 1080 Xtreme Gaming Waterforce WB 8G," not to be confused with its "WB"-less cousin.
The card comes out of the box neatly sandwiched between a metal back plate and a full-coverage copper waterblock with an acrylic window. That's not all, though—the card's RGB-LED lighting shines through the waterblock's window and sides. One has to wonder if it flashes bright red repeatedly in case of a coolant leak. The card's GPU can hit 1898MHz in the regular "Gaming" mode and 1936MHz in "OC" mode.
Gigabyte says this card packs "Titan X-grade" chokes and capacitors, and strapped two white LEDs along the PCIe power connectors that will blink if the voltage going through them appears unstable. Along with the usual selection of GTX 1080 output ports around the back, the Waterforce WB has a couple internally-accessible HDMI ports for facilitating connection to a VR headset.
There's no price information yet, but given that Gigabyte's Xtreme Gaming version of the GTX 1080 goes for around $700 and the WaterForce model with an AIO liquid cooler sells for around $770, we guesstimate by Mark I Eyeball that the price for the model in display will land somewhere between those two numbers. Gigabyte covers the card with a 4-year warranty after online registration.