AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition Review

Article Index

Our Summary and Conclusion

Performance Summary: The Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition put up some of the best numbers we've seen to date. Its combination of higher base GPU and memory frequencies, in addition to its new PowerTune technology with Boost which pushes clocks even further, result in performance that's roughly 10% - 15% better than the original Radeon HD 7970, depending on the application and workload. In comparison to the GeForce GTX 680, the new Radeon HD 7970 GHz also competes well. We ran two synthetic benchmarks, six actual game benchmarks, and two GPGPU tests. In the synthetic tests, the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition trailed the GeForce GTX 680, it traded victories in the games tests, however, and smoked the GeForce in the GPGPU tests. Needless to say, its tough to say one card is truly faster than the other.  If we changed up our mix of benchmarks, things could go either way, depending on the applications / games that are chosen. 

The AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition Reference Card

AMD set out to release the fastest single-GPU powered graphics card (again) with the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition. Did they succeed? Well, that all depends on your perspective. According to our mix of tests, The Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition and GeForce GTX 680 are fairly evenly matched. WIth certain workloads, an argument can certainly be made that the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition is the fastest single-GPU based graphics card available. But that's not universally true, so we're going to declare this round a dead heat. We wish we could declare a clear winner, but we've got to call it like we see it.

Pricing doesn't help settle the argument either. The MSRP of the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition is $499, which makes it about 10% more expensive than the average Radeon HD 7970, but somewhat more affordable than the average GeForce GTX 680. We would have liked to see AMD put some more aggressive price pressure on NVIDIA with this release, but looking back at the performance and current pricing at retail, $499 is a fair position for the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition.

  • Excellent Performance
  • Competitive Pricing
  • Eyefinity Support
  • PowerTune w/ Boost

  • Not Clearly Faster than GTX 680
  • Louder and Uses More Power Than GTX 680

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