AMD Radeon HD 7950 Tahiti Pro DirectX 11 GPU Review - HotHardware

AMD Radeon HD 7950 Tahiti Pro DirectX 11 GPU Review

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How We Configured Our Test Systems: We tested the graphics cards in this article on an Asus P9X79 Deluxe motherboard powered by a Core i7-3960X six-core processor and 16GB of G.SKILL DDR3-1600 RAM. The first thing we did when configuring the test system was enter the system UEFI and set all values to their "optimized" or "high performance" default settings and disabled any integrated peripherals that wouldn't be put to use. The hard drive was then formatted and Windows 7 Ultimate x64 was installed. When the installation was complete we fully updated the OS and installed the latest DirectX redist, along with the necessary drivers, games, and benchmark applications.

HotHardware's Test System
Intel Core i7 Powered

Hardware Used:
Intel Core i7-3960X
(3.3GHz, Six-Core)
Asus P9X79 Deluxe
(Intel X79 Express)

Radeon HD 7950
Radeon HD 7970
Radeon HD 6990
Radeon HD 6970
GeForce GTX 590
GeForce GTX 580 3GB OC
GeForce GTX 580

16GB OCZ DDR3-1600
Western Digital Raptor 150GB
Integrated Audio
Integrated Network

Relevant Software:
Windows 7 Ultimate x64
DirectX April 2011 Redist
ATI Catalyst v12.1b/12.2
NVIDIA GeForce Drivers 290.53

Benchmarks Used:

Unigine Heaven v2.5
3DMark 11
Batman: Arkham City
Just Cause 2
Alien vs. Predator
Metro 2033
Lost Planet 2
Dirt 3

Unigine Heaven v2.5 Benchmark
Pseudo-DirectX 11 Gaming


Unigine Heaven

Unigine's Heaven Benchmark v2.5 is built around the Unigine game engine. Unigine is a cross-platform, real-time 3D engine, with support for DirectX 9, DirectX 10, DirectX 11 and OpenGL. The Heaven benchmark--when run in DX11 mode--also makes comprehensive use of tessellation technology and advanced SSAO (screen-space ambient occlusion) It also features volumetric cumulonimbus clouds generated by a physically accurate algorithm and a dynamic sky with light scattering.


The new Radeon HD 7950 performed well in the tessellation-heavy Unigine Heaven benchmark. The 7950 trailed the Radeon HD 7970 by a fair margin, but significantly outpaced the previous-gen Radeon HD 6970 and beat the GeForce GTX 580 as well.

Also note the marked improvement in the 7970's performance when using the latest RC11 drivers, versus our original scores from last month.
 

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It's a nice card for the money when compared to other solutions.

I agree that it (and the 7970) is priced too high out of the gate, but that's most likely gonna change when NVIDIA drops the hammer soon. I wonder where the price will eventually settle?

I think that it has enough power to use all alone and do well with most games. Crossfire isn't really necessary unless you have caviar tastes and the checkbook to back it up.Smile

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I expect the higher binned OC models with custom cooling to do even better.

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Very nice review. Im sure once more hit the market the price will come down. For now im going to stick with my 6950. It gets the job done nicely.

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Wow not as impressive as I thought. I think AMD is going to be in trouble when Kepler is released.

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Ummm Trouble? with Kepler? please. They are making changes after seeing the 7970 performance, they have time to improve kepler but when kepler is released Amd will have a secret weapon waiting for it, Nvidia will  stay in 2nd place again .

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I don't know why you guys called it pricey when the EVGA GeForce GTX 580 3072 MB GDDR5 actual price is $549.99 -- http://www.amazon.com/EVGA-Mini-HDMI-Lifetime-Warranty-03G-P3-1584-AR/dp/B004YJVUBG/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1327990559&sr=8-2

O_o nice review though i don't see it pricey you get what you pay for.

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That's the crux of my dilemna when writing these conclusions. Technically, pricing is in line with competing offerings, so it's not like we can ding AMD too badly. But when the equivalent counterpart from a previous generation was almost $200 cheaper, something just doesn’t sit right. It seems the trend of technology getting cheaper over time stalled significantly between the previous generation and now.

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Marco C:
It seems the trend of technology getting cheaper over time stalled significantly between the previous generation and now.

Amen, Brother!

It's going on with almost everything. Motherboards, CPU's, Video Cards, Hard Drives,........

System RAM and SSD's seem to be the only things that are bucking this trend.

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Battlefield 3 please.

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Both the 7970 and 7950 looks like excellent cards from AMD to me. It really is too bad that the pricing is not in line with the more typical wallet friendly AMD offerings. One thing that AMD obviously got right is the power consumption I find the fact that their cards are competitive with Nvidia offerings with considerably less power useage to be awesome. Less power usage in turn means less heat :P

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